The Glass Work invited people to take a photograph of their surroundings and immediately respond with a soundscape.
The artwork read the colours in photos people sent, then played them as sounds played on six hand blown glass gongs.
The work was created in collaboration with young people from St Helens and reflected collective journeys and encounters. It was inspired by looking out from the car park above Church Square at the landscape of St Helens.
The artwork was hosted at Thatto Heath Crusaders Rugby League Club, The World of Glass museum, Parr Library and Derbyshire Hill Family Centre.
David Boultbee, Lead Artist of BREAD art collective, said: “Encountering something new and unexpected like The Glass Work invites us to pause to explore fresh perspectives on familiar surroundings and how an audience can use technology and social media to contribute to and influence an artwork.”
BREAD art, use light, sound and interactive technologies with a strong social focus to create artworks inspired by spaces and the public realm.
The Glass Work was jointly commissioned by FACT (Foundation for Art and Creative Technology), a digital arts organisation based in Liverpool, Heart of Glass and Helena Partnerships. Heart of Glass commissions artists to produce art with the communities of St Helens. The Make It Happen Project is developed by Helena Partnerships, it works to increase opportunities for young people locally. The glass elements were designed in collaboration with and blown by glass blowers, Charlie Burke and Amy Skachill-Kelly from The World of Glass in St Helens.
Langtree Park, home of the St.Helens R.F.C. hosted an evening of musical reflection and visual art in an event linked to the anniversary of the World War 1 Christmas Truce of 1914 titled Silent Night / ‘And, on that note’. Produced by Heart of Glass in collaboration with Saints Community Development Foundation and St.Helens Music Service, the evening was symbolic of our desire to create unique arts experiences by fusing disciplines and initiating collaborations; making bold new work.
The much written about ‘truce’, a series of widespread, unofficial ceasefires, took place along the Western Front throughout the weeks before Christmas 1914. This act of collective solidarity against a backdrop of conflict and tragedy inspired a special evening of events when for one evening we brought together school, church and community choirs from across the borough, forming a mass choir of some 500+ local singers to perform a specially selected series of hymns and Christmas classics backed by a local brass band.
Artist Rhona Byrne created a visual intervention for the evening combining the choral voices with sculpture, performance, and audience participation. Her work, ‘And, on that note’ considered moments of transition, states of uncertainty, in between private thought and public behaviour. Locally based artists, volunteers and students from St. Helens College and Carmel College collaborated with Rhona in the making of the event.
A Moving threshold, a fabric sculpture for which performers provided a flexible frame, greeted the audience as they entered the Arena. The choir reformed as an Emotional Choir with a series of experimental choral interludes exploring laughter and obsession. A carpeted Landmass sat still in the darkness of the arena’s pitch until it rumbled and fell apart. A mass of Moving Sculptures of boulders and black clouds negotiated the terrain.
The works in ‘And, on that note’ represented individual and collective endurance – the patterns within the moments of exertion where action, feeling and meaning become one. Each element considered the ‘self’ during moments of human interaction and gathering, reflecting on the desires and tensions between isolation, connection and unity that this presents.
On July 31st and August 1st and 2nd, St Helen’s Town Centre was brought to life with street performance, circus and contemporary dance.
Merseyside Dance Initiative worked Heart of Glass Project, The Citadel Arts Centre and St Helen’s Council to bring a vibrant and exciting international dance programme to the town as City Steps met St Helen’s Summer Streets Festival 2014.
The dance programme ran across the three days and includes stage and strolling performances on Church Street as well as site specific pieces in partnership with Tyrer’s Department Store on Bridge Street. Gary Clarke, one of the UK’s leading choreographers, also lead a residency with a group of dancers from St Helen’s to create a specially commissioned new work for the festival.
Dance Companies and artists included:
Axial Dance – Manchester
Company Chameleon – Manchester
The Jiving Lindy Hoppers – Southport
Stopgap – Farnham
Ballet Nimba – Guinea / Cardiff
Nicoletta Cabassi and Simona Lisi – Italy
Kali Chandrarasegaram – London
China Pearl – Liverpool
Growing Older (Dis)gracefully – Liverpool
Taciturn – Liverpool
Gary Clarke – Leeds
With workshops led by:
Polly Scott – Liverpool
Lamin Dumbuya – Sierra Leone / Liverpool