"Once certain stories get embedded into the culture, they become master narratives - blueprints for people to follow when structuring their own stories, for better or worse."
InhaleExhale is a multimedia, multidisciplinary conversation series about death and dying curated by Window Seat Media in collaboration with local artists, organizations, and groups.
The project is guided by a few questions: What are our “blueprints” for dying? Where do these stories come from and how do they inform the care we seek and receive? What stories challenge our understanding – or are challenging to hear – and what can we learn from them? We curate a variety of monthly events – from visual and performing arts events, to community conversations and nuts and bolts workshops – to explore these questions together.
We're so grateful for the community that has grown around this conversation over the last year. We were humbled by the response and we feel blessed to have so many creative collaborators who contributed their creative energy to the project. We also recognize that we have more learning to do before we can curate additional offerings. So we're on pause until the foreseeable future with this project. In the meantime, we'll share knowledge, voices and ideas that we've found helpful in understanding death care within an anti-racist framework on blog.
Funding to re-assess this project has been provided by Humanities Washington and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act economic stabilization plan of 2020.
InhaleExhale: Death Over Dinner
Wednesday, March 4, 2020 | 6PM | Waterstreet Cafe, Olympia
Join us for dinner and conversation about death and preparing for end of life—for ourselves and our loved ones. We’ve created space for twenty people to gather for a guided conversation.
Have you thought about your own death? What are you most afraid of? Have you talked with loved ones about your values, wishes and fears? After you die, what do you want done with your body? We believe being prepared for decline in health and end of life is super important.
Event is free. Participants purchase their own dinner and drinks. We’re limited to 20 seats, so seize the day! Questions? Contact Meg O’Leary at firstname.lastname@example.org
InhaleExhale: An Experiment in Creative Expression
Saturday, February 29, 2020 | 7PM | Capitol Theater, Olympia
InhaleExhale continues with an experiment in creative collaboration. We invited (mostly local) visual and performing artists to share their questions, ideas, and stories about death and dying through the creation of original works. What resulted was a mosaic of voices and expression. The malleability of memory, the possibility of queer kinship, the interdependence of human and nonhuman, sound and body as conduit and connector, life as celebration...are some threads that weave these works together.
We’re excited to share our experiment and their stories with you! Join us for food, interactive activities, and opportunities to share your story throughout.
Collaboration with StoryOly
Tuesday, January 21, 2020 | 7-9PM | Rhythm and Rye, Olympia
Olympia’s premiere Story Slam event. Community members come together every month to share, compete and tell true stories based on a monthly theme. StoryOly aims to encourage and develop community engagement and connection through the medium of storytelling. January's theme is death. Learn more here.
Admission: $5-10 suggested donation
InhaleExhale: A Community Confluence of Stories + Ideas
Saturday, November 16, 2019 | 9AM to 5PM | Lord Mansion, Olympia
Workshops, speakers, playback theater, exhibits, demonstrations, conversations and more! Together, we will consider our own stories around death and access new ideas and resources about alternative, progressive death care.
Collaboration with Heartsparkle Players
Friday, October 11, 2019 | 7:30PM | Traditions Cafe, Olympia
The Heartsparkle Players are an Olympia based Playback Theatre ensemble. Playback is a form of improvisational theatre where audience members tell moments from their lives and the actors and musician create artistic renderings using dialogue, movement and sound. Each performance invites the audience and the players to listen deeply to highlight our shared and unique human experiences. The October performance will center on the theme "Sacred Acts." Proceeds will benefit Window Seat Media. Learn more here.
Admission: $7-12 (no one turned away)
Project Advisors and Collaborators
InhaleExhale is designed and produced by a collaborative of practitioners and artists. Our network includes:
- Jessica Babcock, Window Seat Media
- Jessica Caldwell, Northwest Home Funerals & Green Burial Education
- Debe Edden, Heartparkle Players
- Elizabeth Lord, Story Oly
- Sophia McLain, Writer
- Meg O'Leary, Winnow
- Lucien Spect, Dancer + Writer
- Eliana Stockwell-Ferber, No One Dies Alone
- Elaine Vradenburgh, Window Seat Media
- Angie Ward, National Home Funeral Alliance
- Lashanna Williams, A Sacred Passing
Huge gratitude to all of our collaborators!
Like us on Facebook or sign-up for our newsletter to stay in the loop. To share your story or assist with the project, contact Project Curator, Elaine Vradenburgh, at email@example.com.