Creative young people are calling for Leigh’s local businesses, organisations and spaces to take part in their campaign to fill the town with artwork, as part of US HERE NOW at The Turnpike, a special season of activity which celebrates and champions the creative voice of children.
Shop windows, empty walls, public places, as well as digital spaces, will be populated with artworks by local children and young people, created during a programme of workshops and activities funded by Wigan Council’s ‘The Deal’ Cultural Education Fund and The Ragdoll Foundation.
The young participants, aged 6 to 18 years, worked in groups with a professional artist over the past 18 months to respond to the themes of ‘Identity’, ‘Place’ or ‘The Future’, with the programme designed to challenge young people to take the lead, collaborate, and follow their own creative ideas.
Artist Sarah Atter, who worked on the project, says, “It’s really nice for young people to have a way of expressing themselves that is creative, that is productive, that is a bit different, that is a different outlook on life.”
Since going into lockdown in March, the programme has continued online, resulting in an exciting collection of artworks which highlights the young people’s aspirations for their futures. As their collaborations with the artists come to an end, the young people are staging a Leigh takeover to showcase their work where it can be accessed regardless of government restrictions in place over the next six months.
Hannah Gaunt, Learning and Engagement Manager at The Turnpike says, “What started as a series of small collaborations has taken on a life of its own, and has really started to shape the work we do with children and young people at the Turnpike. It’s really important that after a period of being locked down and feeling invisible, local young creatives are given the opportunity to share their vision with the rest of the community.”
Local organisations and companies who have a display space available in a public area can apply to become an US HERE NOW Campaign Partner.
The Turnpike is particularly interested in hearing from businesses who have interior or exterior wall space, digital advertising space, or window space which can be viewed even during further lockdowns or precautions due to coronavirus.
To apply, please contact Hannah Gaunt ([email protected]) with details of the space available, and the duration it could be used between now and March 2021.
US HERE NOW young participants will select and curate the final displays.
Visit www.theturnpike.org.uk/us-here-now to find out more.