Art and Wellbeing: Creating community at Gloucester Cathedral
By David Wood
Where: Gloucester Cathedral
When: Until Sunday, July 14
A truly unique exhibition opened at Gloucester Cathedral on Saturday, June 29, showcasing artwork by groups and individuals from across the county and highlighting the power of art for wellbeing.
This collaborative exhibition displays works inspired by the spaces, history, faith and traditions of Gloucester Cathedral, produced by groups who have been part of the three-year Creative Communities engagement programme.
The exhibition features work from a wide range of participants who have taken part in partnership projects enabled by Project Pilgrim at Gloucester Cathedral.
Contributors include photography students from Bridge Training Centre, Adult Learners working with Adult Education Gloucestershire, the Cathedral Artists in Recovery (AIR) Group, Gloucestershire Young Carers, pupils from G15 Secondary Schools Partnership and Steve Hart, who is the artist in residence at Sue Ryder Leckhampton Court Hospice.
Alongside this photography and artwork are stone pieces carved by attendees of the stone carving courses and the magnificent Cloister Colouring Carpet designed by artist Amy-Jane Adams and coloured in by over 1,500 members of the public during the Cathedral's Big Draw 2017 project.
Nathon Milisic, tutor from Bridge Training Centre, said: "After working on this project with the Cathedral for eight months, we are delighted and very grateful to be able to exhibit the students' work in these spectacular surroundings. We hope you enjoy our learners work as much as we have enjoyed working with them to develop their skills."
Many of the artists exhibiting have lived experience of exclusion in varied forms with very real and inspiring stories of personal and artistic development.
The exhibition illustrates how creative activity focusing on the Cathedral as inspiration has helped them face and overcome challenges whilst building skills for the future. Steve Hart is offering his artworks for sale in return for donations to Sue Ryder Leckhampton Hospice.
Helen Jeffrey, community engagement manager at Gloucester Cathedral, said: "Each person who has been part of our Creative Communities programme has brought incredible resilience, perspective, inspiration and learning to the activities, courses and events we have run.
"It is so important that this exhibition celebrates the achievements of everyone involved and shows all our visitors the power of art to inspire, keep us well, aid recovery and contribute to fulfilling lives."
The Cathedral was delighted to welcome the artists, their families, partnership organisations and invited guests to a special private view on Friday, June 28.
Art and Wellbeing: Creating Community can be seen in the Cloisters of Gloucester Cathedral until 5pm on Sunday, July 14. Standard opening hours apply, however there are some restrictions so please check the Cathedral website before visiting.
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