Written by Bryna R. Campbell and William Campbell
Un/Settled came into existence on a warm fall day during a reunion between siblings near our parent’s home in rural Iowa. We were visiting what remained of our late grandparents’ farmstead after our uncle had torn down the house to replace it with a cornfield. As we walked around the mostly barren tract of land we began to reflect on the business-like transformation of the plot we were standing on. We talked about the pain of visiting a place that will soon have no visible traces of the past. This project began as a way for us to formalize our reactions. It has since grown to encompass a whole range of emotions and ideas related to the rural as a descriptor, as concept, as identity, as a place.
Un/Settled is the collaboration of two siblings reflecting on our childhood experiences in the rural midwest and the feelings of longing, frustration, and loss that have emerged since leaving. It is a dialogue with – and confrontation of – popular notions of the rural and rural identity. It is a creative space for us to probe more deeply what the rural means to us.
Un/Settled is all of these things and more.
Un/Settled is a sense of place, a state of mind.
Un/Settled is us.