A dancer who grew up Catholic in Chicago and was once in the US Air Force, a self-proclaimed Wild Woman with a love for mandala art, her spinning wheel, James Weldon Johnson, bell hooks, and giant hemlock trees, Genevieve Wimp-McCann came to Pendle Hill in 2006-07 as the Minnie Jane Quaker Artist in Residence.
"I first heard about Pendle Hill through my meeting, Lake Forest Friends, in Illinois. Each season I would read the Pendle Hill course catalog there and see so many interesting classes I wanted to take. From 2002-06, I went back to school to study humanities, and as my college career came to a close, I applied and was accepted for the Pendle Hill Minnie Jane Quaker Artist in Residence Scholarship.
"One of my interests in coming to Pendle Hill was to focus on my art as an activist, to see how I was called to produce and use my art in this world. As a convinced Friend who was raised Catholic, I also hungered for more information about my Quakerism.
"I have found the classes at Pendle Hill compelling. The intergenerational, spiritual community here has supported and encouraged artistic and academic collaboration with deep self-reflection. I have built deep spiritual friendships with students, faculty, and staff. Through the Pendle Hill chorus and gospel choir, the art show, and Festival Week presentations, I have been able to express my creative self and show my artwork unapologetically and with joy for the first time in my life.
"At Pendle Hill, I have developed my spiritual and contemplative practice through hermitage retreats at the Springhouse, walking the labyrinth, practicing devotional reading, and attending daily meeting for worship. Yoga classes and the daily work routine have been a part of contemplative living for me as well. Through study and reflection on Quakerism, yoga sutras, the Koran, and the Bible, I have found that while I am not a Christocentric Quaker, I am a free-thinking Quaker, accepting all possibilities of reaching toward living within the Divine Spirit.
"For me, this has been a time of artistic and spiritual adventure. Finding balance and developing the art of self-care have been significant in my experience. I am learning to honor both passion and discipline. I have appreciated the opportunities to interact with others who are curious, like I am, and to significantly examine my life among a diverse group of bold scholars, activists, artists, and seekers.
"Fall term, I took a class with Marcelle Martin called "Quakerism: Living into a Radical Faith." Being at Pendle Hill, opportunities abound to practice "living into a radical faith" and explore what that means for me. I have continued this practice and exploration while I have worked as a hospitality intern here this summer and prepared to pursue my Master of Fine Arts next year.
"The Resident Program is not for the faint of heart, but if you’ve got the opportunity for a bit of boldness for once in your life, come to Pendle Hill. You will find out more things about yourself than you ever thought possible."