Who cares? At what price? The hidden costs of socially engaged arts labour and the moral failure of cultural policy.

An interesting paper by Professor Eleonora Belfiore on how Artists involved in community based work should/could be supported.

We really welcome an open discussion about how Artists in our area can be supported to do their best work and engage with local residents in a meaningful way. Often that means that Artists themselves need to be supported with plenty of opportunities for development and nurture. Professor Belfiore’s paper is a really welcome contribution to this discussion.

If you wish to direct people to papers, articles, websites, organisations, courses or conferences then please share generously – we’re very happy to publish contributions here!

https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/full/10.1177/1367549420982863

Request for schools, colleges and exhibition venues within Hall Green

Hall Green Families, as part of Accord Housing, have been awarded NHS England funding to recruit young people to co-design covid, winter & mental health messages.

Our young people are age 11 to 18 who live, study and work in Hall Green locality, which includes Sparkbrook, Sparkhill, Moseley, Kings Heath, Balsall Heath and Hall Green. We work in subgroups, which enable us to make the most of our time, resources and skills.

We are looking for schools and colleges to collaborate with. Ideally this will be within your school curriculum as part of, not limited to, art, ICT or design.

The aim is for your learners to produce something  that can be exhibited or interacted with, hopefully in the public, to showcase their work and achievements. We want young people to set the agenda, hence why we haven’t outlined what will be created.

We will work together to map out the right questions for your young people, as everyone as different needs.

We would love for this exhibition to highlight the voice of young people and their Covid experiences in 2020.

We are also looking for venues within Hall Green to exhibit the final work.

If your school would like to be involved, or if you are interested in showcasing the project, please contact Project Manager Simarjeet.Kaur@accordgroup.org.uk.

Ort Gallery Wellbeing Messages

Wellbeing Messages written by local primary school children are being sent to the elderly in the Balsall Heath and Sparkbrook community spreading festive joy and support during the ongoing hardships caused by the pandemic.

Ort Gallery worked with artist Sabba Khan, whose work is an exploration of first world city life as a second generation Azad Kashmiri Muslim migrant. She explores themes of belonging, memory and identity underpinned by philosophical and psychotherapy concepts that explore the nature of self within and outside of the collective.

Sabba created 6 postcards in co-design with local women that are being shared with our community as part of the recovery period mid/post-lockdown. The idea is to spread a positive message and remind people that they are not alone. Moreover they also encourage people to look after their mental health.

The elderly in the community are receiving the messages through foodbank parcels and through the delivery service of hot means by the Muath Trust who reach up to 90 elderly people each week.

Pupils from two local primary schools – Ark Tindal Academy and Nelson Mandela Primary wrote personalised messages to the elderly in the community to spread festive joy this December and to send hope and solidarity to those in the community cut off from family and friends. The project will support the elderly to write back to their young penpals.

The Wellbeing Messages project was supported by The Community Fund.