An Artist Embedded


When we look back, we cannot know ALL that happened. The historical record is rarely, if ever, complete. When we present history, we fill in the gaps, create the voices that spoke, the characters that lived.  Are we creating fiction?  Have we made history un-true?  Or have we created a truth greater than mere fact? 

Obie award-winning playwright Ain Gordon and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania will explore the intersections of history and fiction, fact and truth, as part of a new two-year project, An Artist Embedded.

Using HSP’s collections as source material and inspiration, Ain Gordon has “embedded” himself in the historic library and archive while developing the script of a new play to be performed at Philadelphia’s Painted Bride Art Center.

Leading up to the performance, Ain Gordon and HSP are hosting a series of public programs with visiting artists and scholars to engage the audience in an expansive discussion of individual rights and their relation to historical events. What is “historical fact”? Where is the truth in these stories, and can it be separated from “the created”?


        "Fryer's shining moment involves a mask that hides his face. His monument obscures him." 

-Playwright Ain Gordon, HSP's Embedded Artist.