Thursday, 22 September 6-9pm
Queen's Jubilee East Belfast Style
A community arts project
Bronagh Lawson (lead artist), Ngaire Jackson, Elaine McGinn, Margaret Moore,with thanks to Karlene McCann, Olive
Ends 28 September 2022
Jubilee project East Belfast style in memory of Queen Elizabeth II.
When starting to plan the Queen's Jubilee project East Belfast in February 2022 we had no idea that the scheduled exhibition in September would take on new significance with the death of the Queen.
'Over the last eight years, I’ve visited bonfires on the 12th
of July day and night to try and understand them better. During that time Lord
street, East Belfast, stuck out as an area that had moved its large bonfire to
a more open space and changed to a reusable beacon for its family celebration
in the streets. It was also the only area that early the 12th
morning had a funfair and family activities organised on a consistent basis.
Much of this was down to the women of the Diamond Women’s group connected to
CharterNI who volunteer in the area and received a Queen’s award in
recognition of this.
The Queen’s Jubilee was a unique opportunity to work alongside the women, adding to their celebrations and running a Loyalist art summer scheme for children in the area. We were welcomed in and found the children very enthusiastic and creative, spending time working with printmaking, photography and ceramics which were then fired in the 11th night bonfire. It was an opportunity to think long and hard about some of the images that surround them and come up with their own version’s.
In bringing artists to work in the area in a socially engaged manner, we hope to have planted the seed that art and access to it can help the community in ways never previously imagined.
Loyalism (working class Unionism) does not usually take up
space in galleries in Belfast despite being a large percentage of the
population. If it does, the work is usually ‘about them‘ and not work they have
authored themselves. It is hoped, in a small way, this exhibition goes some way
to remedy that.'
Text: Bronagh Lawson
About the artists
Bronagh Lawson is an artist based in Belfast who has
written a blog about the vibrant local contemporary visual arts scene
for the last ten years. Previously starting as a participant then
manager she ran cross-community cross border development programmes for
13 years. Originally from Portaferry and Strangford she is a Fulbright scholar and graduate of Winchester School of Art. Bronagh is a co-founder of the Hydrangea project a Belfast/
Chicago collaboration which uses contemporary art underpinned with art
therapy to act as a healing mechanism. Her book 'Belfast City of Light:
Looking and Listening to Belfast Come with Me' is based on her
experience as a non-churchgoer attending every church in Belfast for a
service during 2019.
Elaine McGinn, based in Belfast, has a background of fine art, art
therapy and performance art. She is currently studying on the MFA course, at the University Ulster, Belfast. Her performance, drawings and video work
responds from an embodied art practice, engaging with connections
between inner transformation and societal change. Her aims are to expand
awareness of the crucial and complex role of the body in making and
experiencing art. McGinn casts a net over an ocean of experience and extracts her truths through variegated metaphor.
Margaret Woods Moore is a multidisciplinary artist living in Belfast. After a long career as an Art teacher she now works as full time artist and is based in Vault Artists Studios, Belfast.
Her work process generally begins with observational drawings which she develops into prints and paintings or reworks into finely detailed and often intricate finished drawings. She is inspired by the natural world and people, especially children in everyday situations. ”I am interested in nature and people. I particularly love birds, big birds and small birds alike and have produced a number of prints of Crows and the corvid family in general, as well as some small garden birds.” Margaret also does illustrations which have been included in various publications. She is currently involved in two collaborations with Dublin based author Lindsay Sedgewick, one which is about a collection of quirky bird babies who live in a birch tree. The other is a lockdown exchange of pictures and words.
is a visual artist with a multi-disciplinary practise based outside Lisburn in Northern Ireland. She is best known for her temporary and permanent outdoor public art installations in Ireland and the UK. She works on a studio and project basis enabling her to develop specific work for developed briefs as well as the research and development of more open-ended studio enquiry. Her projects take many forms including, sculpture, painting, print and drawing. Jackson has worked on numerous Community Arts Projects and workshops across the past 18 years facilitating, planning, developing, and overseeing many innovative projects.
With thanks to Karlene McCann, Olive
Names of Children in Lord Street participating
Aliya, Angela, Amy, Bailey, Button, Brook, Cassie, Chelsea, Coen, Calab, Ciara, Ellie, Erica, Georgia, Holly, Henry, James, Jersey, Joe, Kiera, Kaia, Kane, Koby, Kalin, Lakota, Marcus, Mason, Madison, Olivia, PJ, Paul, Page, Rhea, Riley, Rihanna, Ryan, Skye, Tamzin and William. Every effort has been made to capture all the names, but if any have been left out, we sincerely apologise.