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The thought of 1,000 dolls conjures up images of a whimsical childhood adventure or a collector’s expansive horde of action figures, but a good imagination can think up a wilder dream.  Two professors, Kremena Todorova and Kurt Gohde, inspired by local artist and doll maker, Ed Franklin, have set out to invade the North Limestone corridor with 1,000 dolls made for Lexingtonians by Lexingtonians.  Their colleagues, a group of students from Transylvania University, are reaching out to north Lexington residents and hosting a series of doll-crafting workshops to inspire the necessary multitude of doll makers.  Each doll will be displayed and, then, given away as part of this collaborative art endeavor.

Their project is as much social as it is creative.  Yesterday, as I watched students sit by community members young and old while working on the first 100 paper dolls destined to become wooden figurines, I could see both artistic and social outcomes emerging from the shared work of doll-making.  As stated on the Community Engagement Through the Arts blog, “The goal of this class is to form a relationship with the community by engaging in artistic projects with the community.  The outcome of this will manifest itself in many ways, some recognizable and others not so much.”  The truth is, there is no way to predict how the 1000 Dolls project will shape our neighborhood, the students participating in the class, or the residents who live here day in and day out, but I am eager to support and encourage this creative journey to 1,000.  Let the story begin!