Does your family have a gnarled old apple tree in the back yard? Do you look forward to fresh cider and donuts each fall at the local cider mill? Do you remember picking apples at local farms when you were a child? Come share your pomological experiences and apple recipes with the Apple Heritage Museum at the Ann Arbor Re-Skilling Festival.
In the Fall of 2007, I moved to Ann Arbor after having lived in West Michigan for many years. One of the first things I noticed about the city wasn’t the bike paths or the spread of coffee shops and theaters, but rather the apple trees. They seemed to be everywhere I looked; they were in roadway medians, in the landscaping of apartment complexes, in the parking lot of grocery stores and insurance offices. And I became enchanted by them, not just by the trees themselves, but also by their presence within these unlikely locations. For the next three years, I incorporated these apple trees and their fruit into a range of artistic projects, which ultimately culminated in the creation of the Apple Heritage Museum of Huron Valley. The Apple Heritage Museum is a traveling museum with a permanent collection and changing exhibits, utilizing apple related objects and ephemera, as well as the apple trees throughout Ann Arbor to story-tell the regions complicated past and present. The Museum has exhibited at a range of locations, including the Ann Arbor Farmer's Market, the Pittsfiled Grange, and the Ann Arbor Re-skilling Festival. Outside of running the Apple Heritage Museum, I teach art courses part-time at Washtenaw Community College, and work full time at the University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology. I am also on the Board of Directors for the American Museum of Magic (in Marshall, MI) working primarily on exhibits.