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What's in a Landscape?

What’s in a Landscape? is a project undertaken by Art in Residence, in partnership with the Museum of Art and History, to uncover the diverse and multivalent relationships Antelope Valley residents have to the landscape they call home. The goals of the project focused on documenting the people of the Antelope Valley and their relation to its landscape and history. Using the work of Rackstraw Downes as a jumping off point, Art In Residence organized four workshops at Quartz Hill High School, each building on the next, giving students the opportunity to explore plant-centered narratives, documentary filmmaking, landscape painting and mural design, and oral histories. 


What’s in a Landscape? is generously supported by the California Arts Council’s Artists in Communities grant program and the Lancaster Museum and Public Art Foundation.

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A Workshop on Plant-centered Narratives

In this workshop, Jenny Yurshansky took Richard Rosenblatt’s 11th grade English class through a guided writing exercise. Students collected a clipping from a plant, and then wrote a narrative embodying that plant’s point of view. Some students went personal, some went speculative. Writing took various forms, from prose, to poetry, to diary entries. In writing this way, students gained empathy for the landscape as a living companion to its human inhabitants.

Adriana Orozco

Diary of Letitia

Brandon Kim

October 18th, 2020

Edward Lee


Patrick Park

My Name is Winky

Kendall Segale

Ripped from the Ground

Alex Kim


Camille Murray

From an Oleanders View

Emily Schneider

The White Rose and I

Samantha Martinez


Sophia Rocha

The Periwinkle

Ashna Pradhan

Green Is a Color as Well

Destiny Solis


Gabriela Valiente

Reborn, Here

Valeria Munoz

The Alien

Renee Odoi

The Fern Plant

Joanna Vazquez

A Plant’s Life

As an extension of this workshop and as a warm up exercise to the Documentary Filmmaking workshop, Richard Rosenblatt shared the writings with the students in Chris Hall’s class. Each of the four groups took one of the written works, recorded a voice over, and gathered footage to accompany the text.