Workshop participant and architecture student Marina Sapunova from Russia received a grant from UC Berkeley to come to Arcosanti. This is part of her report on workshop activities.


Our workshop started three weeks ago. And I can’t remember if since that time we had just one day without any adventures.

The first week was full of lectures and trips. One of the most interesting things was the natural walk with Roger. We went round Arcosanti; and he told us many interesting and funny stories about plants and animals here, about the Indians and cowboys, about the nature and about weather. He told us how people lived here long-long time ago. We hiked to the one of the mesas near Arcosanti and saw the ruins of Indian dwellings.

Besides that each department here in Arcosanti made a presentation about their work; that was a chance for us to see what kind of work people do here and maybe to decide what is more interesting for us.   
We saw the Archives, the Ceramics Apse, and the Foundry, Maintenance, the Metal shop, the recycling site and many other departments.

Also we had a nice tour of some of residence’s houses here. And by the end of the week we met Paolo Soleri in the Archives to discuss some questions about Archology and Arcosanti.  That was a very important introduction of Arcosanti, because the first time you come here, it’s hard to understand how this whole system works together.

On the first weekend we (some of the workshoppers) decided to go to the Grand Canyon and Montezuma Castle. It was a very nice trip taking into consideration the fact that during our first week at Arcosanti we got to know a lot about the history of the South and the South-West part of the United States. We drove to the Grand Canyon and took a walk there from Hermit’s rest point to the Desert View Point, so-called South Rim of the Grand Canyon. It was still the time of Monsoon season here and the weather was cool with drizzle and fog in the morning; but in a while fog started to disappear and we saw the spectacular views of the Grand Canyon.

That was like an amazing theatrical performance when the wings started to open and you could see the scenery.

Well, the day after we went to Sedona to see the Red Rock Valley and then to the Montezuma Castle. Undoubtedly they all are the very impressive monuments of the South-West so we had a very good time there.
Our second week was like an introduction to work. We spent three days on the construction site and then had a two-day Field Trip to Phoenix.
And what about evenings, normally it is our free time. We usually like to watch sunsets and sunrises on the roof of the Vaults or from the nearest mesa, go to the swimming pool, draw, chat to each other, and organize any activities.  Here we have very nice library, gym and music room.

During the first week we had a music concert at the Octagon in the camp. Basically it depends upon your preferences how to spend your free time, from playing the piano to watching the stars.

And one evening our Italian participants decided to organize a dinner with pizza. So they cooked five or six original flavor pizzas and that was really one of the liveliest dinners! Thank you!

Marina’s report continues on 8/20/10.


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