The R.A.W. is . . .

. . . a fortuitous acronym for the Rural Alchemy Workshop. Among other things, the R.A.W. is a site-based, artistic spotted Equus asinus husbandry practice, established in Carnesville, Georgia in 2008 and moved west in 2011. The R.A.W. encompasses a number of projects involving Karin Bolender (aka K-Haw Hart) and companions and collaborators of various species.

new khaw bio pic

Karin Bolender (aka K-Haw Hart) is an artist-researcher who seeks “untold” stories within muddy meshes of mammals, plants, microbes, and many others. As principal investigator of the Rural Alchemy Workshop (R.A.W.), she explores dirty words and entangled wisdoms of earthly bodies through performance, writing, video, and sound. In the company of she-asses Aliass and Passenger and a diverse herd of collaborators, the R.A.W. cultivates experimental forays like R.A.W. Assmilk Soap, the She-Haw Transhumance series, Gut Sounds Lullaby, and The Unnaming of Aliass. Early journeys through the rural American South with Aliass and Passenger and many other collaborators include Little Pilgrim of Carcassonne (2002), Dead-Car Crossing (2004), and the “Can We Sleep in your Barn Tonight?” MYSTERY TOUR (2006). The site-specific Rodeo Lab series playfully subverts the breakneck speeds and dominance paradigms of traditional rodeo events like Bulldogging and Team-Roping, in search of slower and more contemplative ways of being and knowing embodied others. K-Haw has an MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts at Goddard College and a PhD in Environmental Humanities from the University of New South Wales in Sydney, Australia.

In 2008, K-Haw founded the Rural Alchemy Workshop (R.A.W.) in the pine and poplar woods of Carnesville, Georgia. The R.A.W. relocated in 2011 to the golden light and shadowy buttes of the northern Sacramento Valley in California, and then again in 2012 to the mossy forests and sweeping grass valleys of western Oregon. The R.A.W. encompasses an interdisciplinary art practice that roots in rural landscapes (all the faunal, floral, and mineral forms that inhabit them) and human  acts of metaphor, memory, and imagination. Through writing, video, performance, sound, and collaborative workshops, the R.A.W. explores the porous seams between human selves and other kinds of beastly being, especially other domestic species, and seeks the deepest roots of our common histories, passions, and needs.

Email ~ karin.bolender{at}gmail.com

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