The last I Am More exhibit before the pandemic was The Northshore Mall in Peabody, Massachusetts. It came about because I needed a location for the North Shore Regional Exhibit of I Am More: Massachusetts. It needed to be BIG with lots of PEOPLE in order to have the greatest impact, so I did what any professional event planner does and opened up Google Maps for the north shore, looked for the biggest dot on the map, and declared it the host.
I took a chance on the mall and they took a chance on me. Instead of receiving disastrous messages about vandalism, offended shoppers, or display panels toppling on top of baby carriages, I received messages of gratitude from shoppers, mall staff, teachers, and health care workers for bringing these subjects into such a busy public space.
As a result, when it was time to plan the Western Massachusetts Regional Exhibit of I Am More: Massachusetts, originally planned for UMass Amherst, I approached the Holyoke Mall of the Pyramid Management Group, armed with photos, press and testimonials. They graciously agreed, we celebrated, and I thought that was that: TWO MALLS, mission accomplished.
Not long after, I was talking to a member of the Simon Property Group staff, who manage the Northshore and other eastern Massachusetts shopping centers about my new love of mall exhibits and the idea of maybe doing ANOTHER one, and she said, let me look into it.
A week later she dropped me an email saying…
South Shore Plaza is in.
The Burlington Mall is in.
The Shops at Chestnut Hill are in, and, oh yeah…
The Northshore Mall wants you back.
So after some unexpected holiday season elation and panic, on top of new I Am More portraits, holiday portraits, family visitors and a rejuvenated pandemic, Iain and I donned our masks and loaded up for the first of five mall exhibits around Massachusetts:
In addition, we were able to unveil Jonathan and Jerri, newly framed thanks to your donations:
Mental health resources were provided by the office of Rep. Seth Moulton, NAMI Cape Ann, and the NAN Project. A special thank you to the donors who provided for the new frames and transport costs.
Stay tuned for more from the tour!
If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to provide for frames for upcoming new portraits, and exhibit transport go to the donation page of fiscal sponsor Ocean Alliance and choose “I Am More” from the list of programs. Thank you for your generous support!!