2014 has been a year of realizing dreams, and letting go of many precious things. My journeys through intentional communities from Hawaii to New England have brought me to a new home at Sirius Community. Check out siriuscommunity.org. Sirius is an open spiritual community dedicated to permaculture
(http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Permaculture) and community living in the support of spiritual practice. I have a beautiful room in a shared apartment with solar ( passive and active) wood stove, full kitchen, and even composting toilets! :o)
As you may have heard I was awarded a $2000 grant supporting the creation of a fabrication studio in the Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts . My goal was to invest half of the grant in a vehicle since running a business in the "Hill Towns of Happy Valley", as the collective of villages are called here, without a vehicle is nearly impossible. I was fortunate to find a '97 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme in excellent shape for under a grand. In one miraculous day I made the purchase, transfer, insurance, and a new Massachusetts drivers license happen, and was stylin roomie ride that could manage hauling my tools and materials. I started working immediately as a Personal Care Attendant and Carpenter for a quadriplegic dancer, and 3 weeks later I had managed to book a promising job in Asheville North Carolina. My plans were to be on the road by October 1st.
On the morning of Sept 31st, I had all my tools, materials, clothes, musical instruments (many hand made), my passport, birth certificate, and $500 in cash all packed in the Olds. I hadn't driven the car since the previous afternoon. Her windows were rolled up, and she'd passed a rigorous inspection a week prior to that morn. At dawn, I woke to my car horn in a steady droning honk. I curiously walked out onto the fire escape behind my house and was shocked to see my future investments were on fire. Flames were shooting out from under the hood of the Olds. I ran back in and yelled to my roommate, "My car's on fire!" I grabbed the fire extinguisher and jumped down the steps. The windows were mysteriously down. Tongues of fire were flicking out the dash. I emptied the fire extinguisher directly into the window (that was now mysteriously down). For a second I thought I'd stopped it, but then it shot back with an angry burst crawling into the front seats and hungrily began to eat the interior. The Olds exploded 3 times and was reduced to a melted shell of her former glory. I loved that car.
The police, fire dept, and insurance all determined it was a mystery how it caught on fire. Unfortunately, my insurance did not cover any of the losses. Since that fateful morn I am grateful to have found a new home, vehicle, and some work. My car is a '98 Ford Contour that is not ideal for life in the mountains and insufficient for use as a carpenter or fabricator. I am hoping to save to replace my lost tools and find a more suitable vehicle. I lost my screw guns, saws, 2 tool boxes filled with hand tools, my sculpture tools I'd been collecting since 1994, the last of the materials saved from "Brentlyland" my St. Paul art studio, several hand made instruments, my clothes, my identity, my funds, and my means of travel. A more detailed list will follow.*
You may know how independent and self sufficient I am. For 3 years I have lived a series of most fortunate events that have lead to a stream of successful projects and collaborations. I have lived and worked a dozen communities and am currently honored to be in the Residency Program at Sirius. I would love to host a friend or three who would have interest in hand built community of the highest nature. Sirius has acres of wonderous forest, "Hobbit" cob houses, an octagonal celebration space, a labyrinth, and stone circle of giant stones built by actual Druids. It is a miraculous place, and the opportunities here are abundant.
My challenges are truly driving me to be my best. I am focused on living the healthiest life I can, and am consistently working for the betterment of my neighbors, family, and communities near and far. Currently obstacles include physical and cognitive limitations that can make some day to day activities an extreme challenge. I would love to discuss what this is all about, but it's complicated. I have a condition that affects my digestion and ability to move. I am working on solutions and working at being my best.
Solutions to my limitations are in the works. I am writing a business plan to support my opening a fabrication studio offering custom innovative green carpentry, permaculture construction, sculpture, masks, puppets, and design. My goals include replacing my tools, attaining a van with 4 wheel drive, publishing my portfolio of past work, realizing a marketing & promotions plan, and scheduling predictable work for the upcoming year. As I gain support for my work and ideas, I will be more able to design projects within my means. I have offers of work in Maine, Vermont, Massachusettes (my current home), North Carolina, Florida, New Oleans, Minnesota, California, Oregon, Canada, Alaska, Hawii, Europe, Central & South America, and Asia. As I succeed I forsee spreading my success by employing skilled craftfolk in exciting, nourishing, creative projects.
I have a long list of past accomplishments. My ballet teacher was Prince's ballet teacher. My mime teacher was Michael Jackson's mime teacher. I'm the 4th non-Chinese to have studied Sichuan Opera in its 2000 year history. I've built for the Shed Aquarium, The Smithsonian, The Presidential Library Council of USA, Acadia Repertory Theatre, Theatre de la Jeune Lune, Woody Harrelson, Best Buy Co, Wookiefoot, Earthdance Creative Living Project, Double Edge Theatre, Belly Acres Circus Community, and now Sirius Community. Please take a moment and Google my name for images of my work. There's more images than I have yet been able to post. Please let me know if you find anything you like.
If you wish to help, I am seeking support in:
-Funding: Money is easy. GoFundMe campaign http://www.gofundme.com/brentlymd, Please let me know if you can help, especially helping navigate, manage, and promote my work. Word of mouth has lead to 90% of my funding so far.
i. Tools, Materials and Resources: If I could find a way to replace my cordless tool kit, it was essential to all my building projects. I am seeking a wide assortment of carpentry, sculpture, sewing & leather tools, and painting gear. I lost twenty years of collected tools. Materials such as fabric, molding/casting, clays, paints, and crafting are very useful in what I do. Resources to find cheap or free materials are also helpful.
ii. Computer Tech: I have a laptop that needs some help. If I could improve the memory, hard drive, and battery as well as update the OS, that would make a huge difference in my ability to design, promote, and manage projects.
iii. Transportation: I am very limited with my current car. It is too small to haul what I need for building projects and is not really able to manage the mountain roads here. I am also seeking means to travel to jobs across the country and internationally. iv. Materials: I use a lot of salvaged, surplus, and refuge material. Wood, clay, paint, hardware, glues, fabric, clothing, bamboo, and refuse medical equipment are a few of my standard building supplies.
v. Clothing: I lost most of my best clothes in the fire. Most missed are my Smartwool clothing. The mountain winters here are fierce, and it is quite an investment buying good Merino wool underwear, socks, gloves and hats. Also my winter pants & boots, dress shoes, crocs, carpenter pants, and custom costumes burned.
vi. Furniture and bedding: Most of my bedding burned, and I have a new bedroom with very little in it.
vii. Tent & Camping equipment: Losing my Hennessy Hammock Tent was a huge set back. I need a tent to work some of the more remote events during camp-able weather. Good quality tents and camping gear are very empowering things.
Any support you feel you could offer will be welcome. One must ask to receive. I have intentions to produce a showing of my work. This is a huge task that will take collective effort. I hope to create opportunities where many artists and craftfolk will prosper. I have managed an eclectic myriad of projects, but never alone. All success is the result of many folk coming together to make it happen. By supporting my work, you will be benefiting the communities I work in. From individual families I renovate homes for to large audiences who come to the shows and events I am fortunate to help create, my work is never really about me. I am dedicated to working for a better world in every turn of screw, twist of clay, and scribe of thought. I endeavor to share all prosperity I am gifted with.
In Loving Gratitude,
Brently Michael Davis
Innovative Artistries Fabrications
*A partial list of specific things I lost in the fire:
i. My passport, birth certificate, $500 in cash.
ii. Carpentry tools including my precious cordless Bosch driver and impactor I LOVED and my kind brother gifted to me, fine finish hand saws, professional glue guns, plier staplers, multiple hammers, Tool belts, chisels, knives, screwdrivers, wrenches, a collection of bits and hardware, electric cords, power strips, an inverter, and two filled tool chests.
iv. Musical Instruments: a Banjo-ulele (Cumbus) and Sitar-ulele I had re
furbished to my custom specs. Multiple horns and calls I hand crafted.
v. Hennessy Hammock Tent & REI 3 person tent.
vi. Merino Smartwool underwear and socks and silk long underwear and liner socks. Vitaly useful in cold weather times.
I work 10 hour days, everyday, to make my work possible. I have been traveling and performing most of my life, and am always on to a new challenge. In the last year I have been the Technical Director of Acadia Repertory Theatre http://www.acadiarep.com/, an Artist in Residence at Earthdance Creative Living Project http://earthdance.net/, Holistic Maternity MidWife Group's principal artist making Giant Flying Yoni Puppets and forensic lifecasts of pregnant mothers, and am currently on my way to Mardi Gras in New Orleans to join Caravan Stage Co's new production on board the Amara Zee Sailboat Theatre. It is a genuinely rewarding challenge to keep the work up, travel to new locations when invited (which is my rule, I only go where I am invited) and keep gas in my tank, organic whole foods in my belly, and keep my body fit and healthy. Everything I do I pray will make the world healthier in some way. Any little bit helps. A dollar is a symbol of energy, and a powerful gesture when sent in the right direction. Bit Coin is welcome too! I'm new to gofundme, but thought I'd give it a shot. Thank you for reading and keep up with me on Facebook! Love, light, and laughter, Brently M(ichael) D(avis).
DonationsSee top donations
- Andrea Sullivan
- Noah Tea
- Andrea Sullivan
#1 fundraising platform
More people start fundraisers on GoFundMe than on any other platform. Learn more
Expert advice, 24/7
Contact us with your questions and we’ll answer, day or night. Learn more