What is What’s Good, you ask.

Culturally, it seems that we are addicted to negativity. What happens when we deliberately acknowledge and discuss the assets in our communities? What happens when we make a choice to look for what is working where we live? Can this build community momentum and lead to a “spiraling up effect” within the community?

The What’s Good Project stems from asset-based community development and highlights community strengths. According to research, shifting focus from community challenges to strengthening community assets can result in more effective community improvement. Using that as a framework and art as the output, The What’s Good Project explores what we value where we live.

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Jennifer Drinkwater

A Mississippi native, Jennifer Drinkwater has lived in various communities across the country – including the Mississippi Delta, a state park in Western Massachusetts, New Orleans, multiple Appalachian Trail crew base camps, a Blackfoot reservation in Montana, along the shoreline of Lake Turkana in Kenya, Eastern North Carolina, Mississippi suburbia, college-town Iowa, Atlanta, and artist residencies in Truth and Consequences, NM; Peoria, IL; Marquette, NE; Johnson, VT; and New York Mills, MN. She has spent one year of her life in tents, and currently lives with her beloved husband and dog in a house in Ames, Iowa.

 Jennifer explores how we bring artwork from the studio into the world, and accordingly, how this work can both build and shape community. During the past few years, she has partnered with communities in Iowa and Mississippi in various community art projects, programming and theatre productions. She helped to organize a community-wide steamroll printmaking event in Perry, Iowa; created installations in restored prairies in Nebraska; collaborated on public art projects in vacant sites on Iowa main streets; spearheaded a community knit-bombing project; and painted two murals with middle school children on a juke joint in the Mississippi Delta.





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