In case you haven’t already seen it, I worked with the talented Lauren Kincaid-Filbey to create a preview of the Secret History project.
With help from Kai Dalgleish and Faith Audens, we spent a day talking to and filming people around the Sacramento River Delta towns of Rio Vista, Isleton, Walnut Grove, and Locke. All the video of houseboats, boat wreckage, and river scenes came from a single day scouting this area.
Interestingly, this was in 2014 a few months before the maiden voyage of the Dotty, before we had put the boat in the water and before we had interviewed even one person. People we met gamely submitted to the scrutiny of our camera.
The shipwrecked boat you see in the video was stumbled upon. It was lying cattywampus along the rocky banks of the Sacramento. We exercised our salvage rights and scavenged as much as we could with limited tools from the boat. Many pieces o this shipwreck became part of the shantyboat. If you see a thick inch-wide manilla rope in an exhibition or the louvered vent on the head of the shantyboat, these came from this accidental salvage mission.
Now, here in the present, we are headed back to the Sacramento River for our 2017 summer fieldwork.