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Diodema's story

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Heidi Mullins installed her sculpture, “Voices of Our Ancestors,” last week at the Bernice Garden at 14th and Main Streets. Mullins, art education professor at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, created the work with assistance of a grant from the Southside Main Street Organization (SOMA), which awarded a total of $15,000 to five artists for the garden, developed by Anita Davis. “Voices” tells the story of Mullins' great-great-grandmother, a Lenni Lenape Delaware named Diodema, who was born on the Trail of Tears and left beside a cabin in a hollow log by her parents. Sandstone pavers circle the sculpture to help tell the story; the “log,” constructed of boards and engraved with the trails followed by the Southeastern Indians during removal, contains chimes that sound when cut-out areas on the sculpture are pushed. Other artists with work installed or about to be installed include Maribeth Anders, David Harris, Elena Petroukhina and Robert Best. Nathan Larson, UALR assistant gallery director, assisted Mullins with the project.

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