Invitatum Communitatibus Parvis

Invitatum communitatibus parvis* – The Small Team Challenge

The focus of the challenge is the creation by a team of one cohesive entry from any time period and/or culture within the SCA context to be presented at the University of Atlantia summer session.

The current challenge began June 1, 2021 and will run through May 31, 2022. If there is sufficient interest, the next Invitatum will begin on June 1, 2022. 

There will be on-line as well as in-person displays of the entries, subject to available technology. 

The Purpose and Rules:

If there is a period artifact that you would like to see come to life but which requires a range of skills to complete, this is the challenge for you. If you have such a vision, share it with others to see who else might be interested in making it a reality.  The challenge is not to compete against other entrants, but to successfully find and cooperate with other artisans to explore the creation process. It is hoped that you will expand your own knowledge and that of others, and build ties within the arts and sciences community. You are actively encouraged to recruit team members outside of your expertise and/or locality.

The idea is to explore aspects of joint creation. Artisans in the past rarely made an item entirely by themselves without calling on the skills of other specialties. As Mistress Geneviève d’Aquitaine has so pithily said, “[T]he idea isn’t to get, say, five embroiderers together to work on one project, like the royal cloaks, but to get a poet, calligrapher, illuminator, book binder, and embroiderer to make an embroidered book of poems.”

A team should be no smaller than 3 and no larger than 6. It is highly encouraged that teams be made up of people outside your affinity group. Artisans outside of Atlantia are welcome to participate. Artisans of all skill levels are encouraged to participate, although it is discouraged to have a team top-heavy in Laurels, unless these are embarking on acquiring new skills and knowledge. Not all team members need to be artisans; there could be a person who has skills needed for documentation and producing on-line content.

Each group should have a leader to coordinate. This person need not be a direct participant in the challenge, but could be a person trusted to help the team meet its goals. The person who is the leader should be responsible for the management

of the project, for submitting the documentation, and to ensure the project is ready for display at the University of Atlantia Summer Session in 2022 or on line if that is the preferred option. This gives you a year to select your project, research it, recruit your team, and create your entry.

At the outset you must settle two major considerations:

  • How to share work and expenses. Not everyone will contribute equally to the amount of work involved and there may be costs like materials and shipping to consider. Make sure you explicitly determine how to keep track of these things and who is willing to pay for what.
  • The ownership of the end product. The amount of time and resources that goes into the creation make this essential. You may find it worthwhile to create a piece of regalia for your local group or the kingdom. You may want to designate it as a fundraiser item.  It could be a shared ownership with a specific term of passing from one person to another. This should be explicitly agreed upon by all parties before you start.

At the close of the current challenge on May 31, 2022, entrants should be able to document:

  • The period inspiration/exemplar for the item created and the process by which it was constructed.
  • All artisans who participated and on which aspects of the item.

Similar to the Tempore Atlantia, this is sponsored by the Kingdom Ministry of Arts and Sciences. However, there will be no winner per se. All completed entries will receive acknowledgement of their participation and the KMoAs will encourage members of the A&S community to offer their own nominal prizes to entrants. The deadline of May 31, 2022 will allow time to review the documentation and prepare the award certificates in advance of the University of Atlantia where the results will be displayed. Details for on-line and in-person submitting an entry will be provided later.

Here are some random ideas to help you get started:

  • Make a chest. Have someone build the box, someone make hinges and/or hasps, someone carve decoration, someone paint/gild the decoration.
  • Make a seal matrix. Have someone draw the design, model the design, someone cast the seal, someone contribute beeswax from their hive.
  • Make a cushion. Have someone weave the fabric, someone draw the design, someone embroider the design, someone contribute feathers from their poultry.
  • Make a brooch. Have someone create the mold, someone else cast it, and someone enamel it using glass produced by one of the glassmakers.
  • Make a lyre and have someone compose a piece to be performed on it.
  • Make a cheese using a cheese press someone else made and with milk from someone’s sheep, cow, or goat.

Whatever you choose, the end product should be a coherent entry that reflects the connected skills used to produce it.

*Sincere thanks for the translation to Dumnona, MoAS of Bright Hills