WE BLOOM brought together artworks made by older and younger people, to create a pop-up community garden.
At the end of the first year of Quality Street we held Meet the Street festival day in the playground of George Mitchell Primary School. The event brought together more than 300 people from the school, local care settings, local organisations, friends and neighbours. In the Spring of 2020 the Quality Street working group were beginning to shape plans for the second festival day, due to take place in July. In March the COVID-19 pandemic sadly scuppered these plans and made such a gathering impossible.
In response to the new restrictions, three local artists, Grace White, Jo Scholar and Irene Pulga (who are part of the working group) came up with an alternative way for people to be creative together whilst apart. An activity pack was designed so that people could share stories, connect with neighbours and celebrate with their community. Those who took part were sent an activity pack to help them make artworks which would become part of a display at George Mitchell Primary School and gifts for someone in the community.
Alternative Festival Day – Saturday 11 July 2020
WE BLOOM culminated in an afternoon of gift-giving and festivity. On Saturday 11 July 2020, George Mitchell Primary School held a socially distanced afternoon in the playground, managed in line with government guidelines on gatherings at the time. Families from the school and the local community joined us to see the pop-up garden display and collect a handmade gift.
As part of the alternative festival day a bike parade traveled a specific route to facilitate the exchange of gifts between older people living at Albany Court, Glebelands and the school. The route was advertised in advance and people were encouraged watch the parade from their doorsteps. The bicycles brought a carnival feel to the day with music and decorations.
After the festival day the pop-up garden display traveled from the gates of George Mitchell Primary School to Albany Court and Glebelands, where residents, family, friends and passers by could see the artworks.
We Bloom is part of the At Home Together programme Magic Me’s response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Below are some of the artworks we received for the pop-up garden (click on any thumbnail picture to open the gallery):
Photo credits: Grace White & Elisa Dirosa