Last Wednesday evening we attended the launch of the Love Arts Launch armed with our clip board and post it notes! Was great to see some familiar faces and meet some new people too. The exhibition was excellent, a very eclectic mix of work that really showcased what a talent there is in Leeds. We asked some of the audience about how they identified themselves and got some varied responses, but not surprisingly artist and creative were mentioned a few times. I think our creativity is a part of ourselves we wear with pride. I definitely feel I identify as a creative or artist myself but it hasn’t always felt that way. I remember being at the Art college and having this conversation and feeling like I couldn’t call myself an artist as I felt fraudulent or like I was pretending, I’d worked in retail so long that I identified as a shop girl even when I worked in management. I still struggle with a job title I am really an artist?? I’m I a community arts tutor or a teacher or a community artist?? Does it really matter? Does anyone care? Do I care? These titles and labels all carry connotations that I feel cause me a level of internal conflict!
Here’s a picture of the responses from the event well done all the artists and organisers involved in putting this on!
On Tuesday 04.10.16 we took our board and post it notes out on the streets again. Gathering more responses from people about what their identity is for our I.D.enitiy project. This time we visited Chapeltown, Chapel Allerton and Harehills.
We’ve been really intrigued by the range of peoples responses. Some people are clearly very proud of a particular aspect of their identity, other struggle to think of how they might describe it and many are very clear that they don’t like to label themselves. One lady told us “I don’t normally put myself in a box – I’m just me!”.
This got us thinking about how we prefers to be seen? – Am I outside the boxes? Am I just one box? Am I lots of boxes inside one big box? Can boxes/labels support our well-being? Are they always negative? Perhaps they can be both supportive and negative?
Alongside being out and about this week, we’ve also been prepping lots of paper ready to install our exhibition next week at Union 105 as part of the Love Arts Festival. See the Facebook event here for details on the Launch, workshops and performance we will be putting on. Don’t forget you can like our Facebook page and follow us on Twitter to keep up to date with what we are up to…
Today we spent the day asking people in the streets of Armley, Farsley and Headingly, what comes to mind when asked how would you describe your identity?
The responses were fascinating. The enormity of this question became evident very quickly. For many this was a question they just couldn’t answer and for others it was hard to prioritise what they wanted to choose. In contrast we also met some people who only needed a split second before confidently answering.
Throughout the day we spent a lot of time thinking and talking to each other about identity and the more we thought about it the more we realised how complicated our own relationships are with our identity’s. One of the main things we learnt is that most people we talked to found it a difficult question and were reluctant to share more than one facet of their identity. Instead favouring to pick one facet which perhaps they were most proud of or comfortable with.
This has left us with many things to mull over… Is identity something people feel is private issue? Is it something which we find is easier to ignore? Are people worried about how being proud of parts of their identity might come across to others? If people are preferring to hide or not acknowledge parts of their identity, how does this effect their mental health/wellbeing? All these things and many many more are now running through our heads. We are looking forward to taking our board to other areas in Leeds later in the week.
Here is what our board looked like by the end of the day…
We’d like to say a massive thank you to everyone who spared the time to come and chat with us today. We had a great day meeting you all. If you’d like to share any of your thoughts about how you see your identity please do send us your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
We’ve been origami-ing over coffee and recording our voices in the street today. All part of our exciting new I.D.entity project. Here is sneaky preview of what we’ve been playing with…
We will be out and about around Leeds tomorrow (Sat 1st of Oct) asking people to talk to us about I.D.entity. Your response will form the basis of our installation. Follow our twitter account @paperwork4well to keep up to date with where we throughout the day. Come and see us, write on a post it note and have a chat!
We are please to announce that we will be taking part in the Love Arts Festival 2016. I.D.entity will be hosted by Union 105 the week beginning 10th of October. We will be spending 2 days in the space installing an installation exploring the theme of ‘identity’ and how our relationship with our own identity effects us.
Visit the exhibition at Union 105 on 12-15 Oct between 10.00 and 16:00 or come to one of the
Launch of exhibition and Workshop @Union 105 – Wednesday 12th of October 18:00-21:00 (It’s FREE! – just turn up). Come along and explore the theme of Identity through paper crafts and movement. (Drinks and nibbles will be served)
Workshop @ Union 105- Thursday 13th of October 18:00-20:00 (Free – book online www.loveartsleeds.co.uk/booking or search event on EventBrite). Come along and explore the theme of Identity through paper crafts and movement.
Performance – Friday 14th 19:00-20:00 (FREE – book online www.loveartsleeds.co.uk/booking or search event on EventBrite) Live Art Installation/Dance performance. Dancer – Charlotte Arnold. Come along and see the installation in a whole new way as dancer Charlotte Arnold brings it to life as she explores the space. (Drink and nibbles will be served.)
We would like to say a big thank you to Leeds Inspired and Arts and Minds who are funding this exploration. We can’t wait to get into the space and make something happen!!
We’ll be blogging throughout the process, so watch this space for more info!!
On the 15th of May 2016 we had a great day of Play as part of Assembly House’s series of Flash Shows.
We invited colleagues from other art forms to come and join us for a day of Play (R&D) in the Gallery Space at Assembly House. We finished off the day with a ‘flash’ performance created from the ideas we had explored throughout the day.
We ended up sharing a structured improvisation in an environment built from paper. The audience where encouraged to be a part of the performance by being in control of our ‘origami fortune tellers’ – also known as cootie catchers, chatterboxes, salt cellars and many other names!
At the end of the performance we invited our audience to come and play in the space and take part in ‘Emergence’. Paperwork has been developing ‘Emergence’ over the last year and we will be offering it to the general public to come and try at the beyond festival opening night in June.
We had a great day and it sparked plenty of ideas for future projects. Thank you to everyone who came to play and those who came to watch our performance and especially to the audience who generously got involved and had a go at ‘Emergence’.