Creative Place Project ARTS Fund Continues to Support Local Creativity

February 7, 2017 | News

Local artists, community groups and businesses have benefited from ProjectARTS support helping to make creative projects come to life in and around Forres.

In the second and third rounds of the ProjectARTS funding, £8,497 was awarded across seven projects to support local creative collaborations.

The ProjectARTS fund totals £20k and is managed and delivered by Findhorn Bay Arts as part of the Creative Place award programme.  Awarded to the Forres Area in June 2015 through Creative Scotland, the Forres area programme is unique in making available an open fund for local artists to apply to.  Aiming to support closer working practice and lasting partnerships between artists, business, and community groups, Project ARTS will bring about new work and creative collaborations that respond to and connect with the Forres area.

The application round in May 2016 supported activity throughout the summer months with many projects showcasing on Culture Day Forres as part of the 2016 Findhorn Bay Festival and with continuing activities enhancing local communities and sustaining creativity.

A ‘Feedback’ installation linked the world of art, mythology and nature with the world of technology and materials.  The concept developed from the Forres Tolbooth preservation work and a past court case involving a sheep held as evidence.  Made by artist Selena Kuzman and local organisation T-Exchange, Feedback entwined two pieces; a sheep and a shepherdess, both made of recycled materials. The sheep encapsulates the scientific idea of feedback by literally carrying its feed on its back and remains on display in the Forres Tolbooth.  The sheep will be used in future heritage exhibitions.

Inspired by the notion that second hand shops often get a bad press and the knowledge that many stories linger behind donated items, Margot Henderson worked with the five charity shops located on Forres High Street to engage people in telling and sharing stories, and creating imaginative pieces reflecting on loved items as they change hands in Forres.  Each shop created a window exhibition to showcase the stories which were on display during the Findhorn Bay Festival 2016.

Ruby Worth established and led a new group of local people who came together to Dance Walk.  Three monthly Dance Walks took place in August, September (on Culture Day Forres 2016) & October.  Including local people from across the Forres area, the activity is a means of enjoying nature, exercise, creativity, music and dance with others.  The group is now established and still active coming together for monthly Dance Walks. To find out more about the group and upcoming meeting dates please visit Dance Walk Moray.

Fly Agaric Performing Arts led a project to install rigging equipment for aerial acrobatics training and performing in Universal Hall, Findhorn.  The project has since worked with vulnerable young adults enrolled in the Youth Empowerment Programme to help them learn trapeze and circus skills using the new equipment.  The equipment is now permanently in place at Universal Hall allowing for ongoing training workshops to take place and for professional performers to visit and entertain.

The third application round in November 2016 awarded funding to three projects, all of which will commence in Spring 2017 including workshops, walks and singing.

‘The Regenerator’ project is due to kick off in February with a series of workshops led in a creative collaboration between three local artists Jennifer Cantwell, Joni Phippin, Heidi Soos.  The artists are working in partnership with local reuse-reclaim facility Moray Waste Busters to host a series of artist led themed up-cycling workshops.  The workshops will take place at Moray Waste Busters using materials otherwise destined for landfill.  The confirmed workshop programme:

Frame Up, Saturday 25 February 10-12pm with Heidi Soos – Making picture frames from discarded objects
MilkMade, Saturday 25 February 12:30-3pm with Heidi Soos – Making jewellery from milk bottle plastic
Funk your Junk, Saturday 4 & 11 March 10-12:30pm and 1-3pm with Joni Phippin – Up cycling furniture and how to make any surface chalkpaint
Bookbuilding, Saturday 18 March 10-3pm with Jennifer Cantwell – Make your own notebooks and collages using paper and old books
Revamparama, Saturday 25 March 10-3pm with Jennifer Cantwell, Joni Phippin and Heidi Soos – A day of remaking, mending and vamping clothes, bags and accessories

Local artist Caroline Inckle will host ‘Creative Pathways’, a visual art project that will develop a new bespoke piece of work in response to the unique habitat of the Forres Community Woodlands.  Working alongside Forres Community Woodlands Trust, the work will be made using materials primarily gathered from the woodlands and then placed within the site for visitors to enjoy.  A series of artist walks and talks for public participation will be held during the construction of work and following installation programmed for late Spring/early Summer.

Local singer songwriter Nikki Lewin will run a series of participatory singing sessions with residents living in sheltered housing at Varis Court, Forres.  The workshops and songs used will include a variety of old classics, some of Nikki’s own repertoire and local traditional working songs.  The sessions are designed to connect emotionally with participants, stimulate and uplift.  A CD of songs and short film will be produced and given to participating residents as a lasting memento and a source to stimulate memory recall.

The Project ARTS fund is open until February 2017 with the final application deadline of Friday 10 February 2017 at 5pm.  For further details and to request guidelines and an application form, please contact Findhorn Bay Arts by calling 01309 673137 or emailing assistant@findhornbayarts.com.