Wow - how 5 weeks flew by! It is hard to believe that we lived at Northbourne Care Home for 5 weeks this summer. On Friday 8th of September we had a party with residents, family and staff. We shared work that had been made - videos and paintings and we talked about moving forward. Both Claire and I feel strongly that our relationship with Northbourne has just begun really. We felt it was important that this event was tailored around the residents and hope to have a four day exhibition later in the year at Northbourne that is open to the wider audience interested in this project.We are going to continue writing this blog from now and use it as a reflective and evaluative space. We are also really interested in hearing thoughts from anyone who has been following the project, so please do feel free to contact us (see sidebar or contact page).
It feels important to continue coming in as the impact of our time here begins to resonate into our thoughts and feelings about our practice - what has changed, what has been confirmed, challenged, deepened. I think we both feel we have broken a certain type of institutionalised 'wall' that permeates participatory arts practices in settings like care homes. We have begun to think differently about how relationships are negotiated and established and. I feel so strongly that I am closer to a more reciprocal, unique and fluid understanding of what a collaboration really is.
Here are some photos of our time at Northbourne. Many taken by myself and Claire, and also by Phyllis Christopher who worked here with us, making photo-work with residents and documenting our time here.