Connected \\ May 11, 2020
PEMcast 017 – Life at sea
While confined to our homes and spring in bloom all around, many of us are trying to find solace in creativity. How many times has this perfectly apt Toni Morrison quote been shared lately?
This is precisely the time when artists go to work. There is no time for despair, no place for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we do language. That is how civilizations heal.
Quarantine flag at Salem Maritime National Historic Site. Photo by Paige Besse/PEM
We also talk with the rigger of the Friendship of Salem, about his decision to hoist the ominous quarantine flag in the harbor. And begin to understand our own feelings of being adrift with those of sailors when they had only the stars to guide them.
John Newman from Salem Maritime National Historic Site, takes down the quarantine flag before a storm.
Salem and PEM’s history are steeped in maritime tradition. Something Finamore discusses on the PEMcast is the idea of a gam: when two ships join up in the middle of the vast and lonely ocean to connect and celebrate. This strikes us as such an appealing concept right now as we are all isolated by the pandemic, so we are making plans to host a virtual gam with our curator and all of you. Stay tuned on our social channels for more information. In the meantime, check out a virtual tour of PEM’s new maritime gallery and follow Dan Finamore on Instagram @mattersmaritime.
Photo by Paige Besse/PEM.
PEM was founded on the idea that life at sea was hard. It was hard on sailors and their families, since the sea promised neither wealth, nor safe passage. And so the museum’s founders offered aid to those who lost their fortunes or who never returned from sea. Today, during these uncertain times, PEM is once again offering its support. For every contribution made to the #WeArePEM campaign, the museum will donate a membership to caregivers at North Shore Medical Center. As of this post, we’ve already donated more than 200 memberships!