The large-scale project will center around five “river hubs” along the Mississippi River, bringing people together around questions of power, relationships to place, and the ethics of stewardship all along the river. Washington University in St. Louis will serve as the host institution for the Middle Mississippi River Hub. The five hubs and their host institutions are:
- Headwaters Hub/Water Protectors Welcome Center (Honor the Earth)
- Upper Mississippi River Hub (Macalester College and Augsburg University)
- Middle Mississippi River Hub (Washington University in St. Louis)
- Lower Mississippi River Hub (Southern Illinois University and Rhodes College)
- Gulf South River Hub (Tulane University and Dillard University)
At each hub, students, faculty, and community members will collaborate in developing new research, workshops, courses, and digital projects to engage the public.
Colten, a senior lecturer in photography, and Peemoeller, a lecturer in landscape architecture, will collaborate with artist and architect Jesse Vogler of the University of Tbilisi and Matthew Fluharty, founder and director of Art of the Rural, to lead the St. Louis Hub for this three-year project, building a field school for learning and knowledge exchange.
The first phase of the project will focus on partnership development and community engagement across the five hubs and their local communities. An advisory committee has been tasked with helping ensure the project is meaningfully anchored in the local community and connected to other important, ongoing efforts, such as those supported through The Divided City and by the Sam Fox School’s Office of Socially Engaged Practice and Office of Research & Innovation.
Colten and Peemoeller’s work builds upon a process of engaging with communities around the Metro St. Louis region and building connections across the Mississippi River through cultural, physical, and metaphorical exchange.