To honour the stories we have been collecting from the starlings of Four Lanes we wanted to involve the participants in the making of a communal artwork, which would celebrate their memories and could be shared amongst the congregations. With this in mind we arranged a series of sessions in Four Lanes Methodist Chapel and invited all the interviewees to come and help shape the next part of the project.
The recordings had given us a wealth of material and so we transcribed many quotes to encourage memory sharing within the group. Reading the quotes aloud jogged many more memories and more stories emerged and were shared with the group. It was lovely to see people who had not spoken for a long time reconnect through sharing stories and photographs.
To help decide how best to transform these wonderful stories into a lasting piece of artwork we introduced the group to other examples of ways of interpreting and representing stories in a creative way. After a clever suggestion from Father Peter, it was decided that the group will repurpose the perspex figures issued by the British Legion for Remembrance Sunday as objects that could trap images, photos and text and be mobile enough to live in both the church and the chapel; our own crowd, or congregation of stories.
Working as a group we whittled down quotes and photographs under a series of key themes that had emerged. To add extra interest we also asked the group to identify any images or colours that could go alongside the text and photos, for example a bottle of pop for Tea Treats. This brought up lots of interesting ideas and the stitchers of the group went away with lists of what to make over the holiday period. Even Father Peter went home with a task! …..to stitch a Marigold coach that would take them to Tea Treats.
We really look forward to the next workshop in the New Year (Tuesday 15th January 2019- 10:30am-4pm- drop in anytime- everyone welcome) when we will be assembling the figures and adding more embellishment. There was talk of a celebration and procession of the figures when they are complete in the spring of 2019. Watch this space!!!