Creative World – A collaboration of commissions

Creative World – A collaboration of commissions

Creative Junction worked in partnership with Artswork to engage communities of children and young people (CYP), principally in out of school settings ensuring access for harder to reach CYP, giving them a voice in influencing the progression of their projects and also the opportunity to link directly with other young people from across the world to share their projects.

Artswork appointed SPUD Group to manage and deliver the programme of commissions. Cass Productions were appointed to undertake the documentary film project. They worked with a group of 6 young people who received training through hands-on engagement in making the film. By engaging young people, Cass Productions provided an additional opportunity within the Creative World programme for young people to gain creative, evaluative and technical skills, and to work collaboratively with each other and industry professionals. They also developed self confidence, valuable work experience and employability skills. The result was a film of professional quality and a project, which fit well with the wider aims of Creative World.

Through involvement with Creative World, 8 young people gained their Arts Award: 4 Gold, 2 Silver, 2 Bronze.

A brief summary of the five projects is below:

Breaching Borders

Young People from the Harbour School in Portsmouth, a specialist service for young people with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties (BESD) or medical needs, have been communicating with each other and with young people in a school in Mataro in Spain. The young people in each country have been developing their creative skills through photography, collage and photo animation and then exchanging their photos with each other, and in doing this seeing bits of another culture and learning from each other about who they are and what they do.

For many of the young people they also paid their first ever visit to a gallery, at the Aspex Gallery, where they were inspired by an exhibition by Suki Chan ‘A hundred seas rising’ to create interactive dens.

The aim of the Breaching Borders project was to encourage confidence in the young people’s developing voice. The culmination of the work was an exhibition held in each country showing the exchange, the communications and the reflection throughout the project.

Parallel collaboration with Salisbury Playhouse

Parallel was a collaboration between young people with special educational needs from the Oak Lodge Secondary Special School and Arts College in the New Forest and Stage 65 Youth Theatre from Salisbury Playhouse.

Together they created a performance about the Olympics using theatre, opera and film and explored the themes of community, difference and understanding. An intensive seven-day residency was complemented with several months of workshops in the school and at the theatre, and as the project grew and more young people wanted to take part, students took on roles including improvised script writing, set design and costume design.

Throughout the process, the young people drew inspiration from partners Evangelical Action in Brazil and English Touring Opera, to influence their understanding and skill.

The end result of this project was a public performance at the Salisbury Playhouse, which was a new experience and a highlight for all of the Oak Lodge students.

Worlds of Wonder

Animation Station worked with UK partners Enham Trust, Andover College and EDGE Andover to create a unique digital portfolio of young people’s ideas, hopes and aspirations to celebrate 2012 with a legacy of new and inspired artworks and media.

The young people, some NEET or at risk collaborated with Upwardly Bound, a maths and science group of young people not engaged with formal education based in Chicago: The project provided an opportunity for young people to express themselves openly, and with the support of artists and partner staff, to share their intimate thoughts creatively with an audience. They had a unique opportunity to tell others what was important to them from their own perspectives. This creative ‘navel- gazing’ allowed young people to find space to think about their lives and at the same time gain new skills in the use of a variety of media including: film, sound, animation, social media and photography.

The project culminated in a time capsule of works, left for future generations.

Gamelan Architecture

Gamelan Architecture was a multidisciplinary international art project that involved dance, music and architecture. Artist Carlos Cortes and Aspex Gallery, Portsmouth, worked with two collectives of young people who developed in parallel two interactive installations and/or performances that unfolded simultaneously in two different countries.

The project actively and meaningfully engaged almost a hundred young people. The partnership built upon the existing relationships that each of the lead partners had with groups of young people in the UK and Spain. However the ways that partners worked with these groups of young people on the project was truly innovative.

Gamelan Architecture facilitated a plethora of new creative experiences, and on a consistent basis, for the children at Kane’s Hill, a traveller community. Some of the cultural opportunities offered through the project were entirely new experiences for the young people. The project also facilitated opportunities for groups of young people to work together through new local partnerships, which extended to community groups.

The outcome of these experiences and the skills gained as a result can be seen in the quality of the work created by the children at Kane’s Hill during the project, which included: film trailers, music tracks, choreography, sculpture.

Innovations were achieved through the work with young people in Spain through Spanish organisations Centro de Historias (Zaragoza, Spain) Joaquin Merchan Donaire Trayectos Dance Festival (Zaragoza, Spain) Natividad Buil.

Although the Spanish children were well accustomed to working on creative projects, working on an international collaboration was both new and exciting to them, as was the opportunity to present their work in a professional setting.

Carlos Cortes visited Spain to share the works that had been created and to collect inspiration for the young people in the UK, before the installations were performed in their local settings.

Digital Diorama

All of the content of Digital Diorama was developed with the enthusiastic and energetic input of the students and staff at St Mark’s CofE Primary School, Shirley, Southampton, supported by SPUD project leaders.

Digital Diorama encouraged children to look around their local community and think about the idea of a ‘sense of place’. What makes their place special, unique, different, good or bad. 85 year 5 pupils of a very international mix, speaking over 46 languages were engaged in a project of innovation, quality, depth and reach: thinking about and responding creatively to their local area. These responses were then brought together to form the end product – an interactive website that captures and responds to the views and feelings of young people about their local area. By clicking on the image of the web page, the viewer will be able to interact with the students photographs and drawings using the words that they have tagged to all of their images.