Ideas, People, Places: Regeneration and collaboration through the arts.
Artes Mundi has been exploring how contemporary arts practice can transform people’s engagement with their community and environment, with partners Valleys Kids and RCT Homes, supported by Arts Council Wales.
Throughout May and June, artist Rabab Ghazoul has been working with a team of young Community Consultants in the Penygraig and Porth area of Rhondda Cynon Taff to design and run a series of creative conversations within the local community. Taking place in the space of a week the ‘conversations’ engaged with the resident community through pop up events that included utilising a local shop for a story exchange that saw locals share their thoughts and anecdotes about the area and presenting reoccurring themes and words on the high street.
The week finally culminated in a photography event with a call to action for the local community to participate around key locations in Pen y Graig with photographer Michal Iwanowski.
Following from the series of events the community consultants and artist delivered presentations to the core partners that explored the experiences, challenges and impact of the project.
The community consultants said:
‘What an experience! It has made me think differently about my community and has helped many people.’
‘This project has been a memorable experience and an amazing opportunity!’
‘I have learned art is about being able to express yourself in different ways.’
This research will support our application for further funding from Arts Council Wales as part of the Ideas: People: Places programme which is seeking to invest in a small number of exemplary projects that will genuinely test new models of regeneration and collaboration through the arts.