I’m delighted to have been collaborating this autumn with Leicestershire based photographer Linda Young on the ‘Expression of Freedom’ Project. Following our successful ‘Click Create Connect’ collaboration project in Erewash we’ve been working with two groups of young people engaging with Youth Services in Leicestershire. Along with their youth workers we’ve been busy supporting and inspiring them to create words and photographs which will form part of an exhibition, marking North West Leicestershire’s contribution to the international campaign, ‘ HYPERLINK “https://16dayscampaign.org/” Sixteen Days of Action Against Gender Based Violence ‘.
The exhibition will include work created by participants who attended different workshops led by other artists.
The young people relished using their phones (and Linda’s world-class camera) to take photographs, but encouraging some young people to engage with ‘words’ was a challenge! For some of our participants writing meant school work, and school work brought with it various negative associations. However, with conversations came trust, and with trust came engagement.
We’re excited about the exhibition launch – not long now. Linda and I have booked our tickets for the launch event, and we’re longing to see, and hear, the reactions of ‘our’ young people (and perhaps members of their families) when we meet at the private pre-launch just before the main event when they’ll get their first glimpse of the results of all their endeavours, their words and images, designed, and curated, on public exhibition.
This short project is intended as a pilot for future engagement with other groups. Linda and I are crossing our fingers and looking forward to re-engaging with colleagues in Leicestershire.