Refuge Journal 16

Feb 16 2018

Co-founder Adriel Denae, featuring special guests Robert Ellis and Lilly Winwood, will be performing in our chapel on Sunday, February 25th. Join us for a great evening celebrating the release of Adriel’s first single from her forthcoming album “Build a World.” Limited tickets are available for $50 for this all ages performance. Refreshments will be available, and seating will be first come, first served. Doors open at 6:00pm and the show will start at 7:00pm. Purchase your tickets by clicking the button below!

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Kirk Jackson

Artist in residence

Kirk Jackson started his journey as an artist in his childhood drawing in sketchbooks, painting, and writing. As he became older, he began making sculptures, learning metalwork, working on stained glass, and creating custom jewelry while trying to find his perfect medium. In his mid-twenties, Kirk added to his skill set by learning every blue collar trade he could including house painting, restoration work, plumbing, electrical, wood working, and cooking, all while focusing on writing. “It gave me a way to make sense of the reality of the world and experiences we have that form who we become.”

Shortly after, he was working for the largest telecommunications company in the continental US, but found himself miserable. In an effort to change this, he started making jewelry again and dove back
into writing. After working for the company for a decade, Kirk quit his job and started his own handyman business while he continued creating, writing more, building up his jewelry studio, and woodworking.

Following the death of his father’s dog, Jackson shared a short story about the events which followed on Facebook. Shortly after, Kirk received a message from co-founder Cory Chisel whom Kirk knew only by name, offering him a residency here at the Refuge. He accepted the opportunity, and “found not only a part of myself that had been repressed for a long time, but a family that loved and understood me as well.”

During his residency, Kirk focused on writing and describes it as a life-changing experience. While he still creates other things, writing is what he truly loves. “This place…no, these people are the Refuge. All of whom believe that the concept that art, in fact, matters.”

Kirk comes to visit us from time to time, and is currently here to help renovate some of the rooms in our building. “It saved me in some ways, this place. These people. I said at the beginning of this, ‘I’m a writer.’ I can say that, with authority, because someone took a chance on me. Gave me a once in a lifetime opportunity to be a part of something that matters. I owe this place, these people, a debt I can never explain, let alone repay. But, I’ll keep trying every chance I get. The same man that reached out to me in the beginning of all of this once said, ‘If you love it, it will love you back.’ I’ve since come to believe that with my whole heart.”