.ART, NATURE & LOCKDOWN: NEW PROJECT GETS CREATIVE WITH GREEN SPACES IN STOKE-ON-TRENT
Urban Wilderness, Stoke-based Community Interest Company, have been successfully awarded funding from Arts Council England to get creative with our city’s green spaces. The project, called ‘Wastelands’, was developed in response to the Covid-19 crisis and lockdown. The project will commission five new pieces of art-work from local artists to respond to green spaces – parks, gardens, or strips of disused land – that have become important to us during lockdown. ‘Wastelands’ will also share stories from the communities across the city about how they have coped during lockdown.
Laurel Gallagher, founder and co-director of Urban Wilderness says:
“Stoke on Trent is one of the greenest cities in the UK. As an organisation we have long been interested in using these green spaces for community benefit. Throughout lockdown many of us have enjoyed exploring the green spaces on our doorsteps, and new artwork is a great way to connect communities and explore our new experiences.”
Urban Wilderness are one of several cultural organisations who have been awarded emergency funding from Arts Council England to deliver work during the pandemic.
Isla Telford from Urban Wilderness says: “We developed the project in consultation with Appetite Stoke. It’s a very difficult time for Stoke’s cultural organisations. We are not alone in having had our Spring and Summer programme cancelled. We are supportive of social distancing measures and our priority is to remain safe at all times. We always work outdoors, and we are delighted to have received funding to explore how our many green spaces can provide opportunities to connect responsibly at this uncertain time. We hope our findings from this project will help other organisations, and some of the schools that we normally work with, as well. ”
Jenny Harper, co-director of Urban Wilderness and documentary photographer says:
“It’s been a very difficult time in Stoke on Trent for everyone, families, small businesses, everyone has been impacted. We’re hoping to capture some of those experiences, the good and the bad, through talking about the City’s green spaces.”
Urban Wilderness Stoke CIC, 72 Hartshill Road, Stoke, ST4 7RB, Company Number: 11709371