Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Community Art and engagement really does make a difference

Retracing my steps to a former workplace in Islington after nearly eight years, I again came across the large and very long Millenium Mural down the entire wall of a building. I had forgotten all about it, it is huge! Nearly ten years on, it really has stood the test of time and become a real feature of that part of town.

People will always talk about content and style, but it is still there after almost a decade - it really brightens the street up, and even better,there is little evidence of any damage.

I frequently talk about including art into both learning and community environments, it just adds so much. When the stakeholders are engaged in the design and hopefully creation, the ownership and sense of belonging really kicks in!

The same applies to schools. Celebrating art work by students throughout the schools (not just the foyer and art rooms) is a must. The attention it gets is remarkable and a real motivating factor for students, staff, paren and the local community. As we design new schools, the need for purpose built sculpture spaces is just a really vital aspect to be considered.

In Islington this community would be a much duller place without the mural! Much like learning environments that do not celebrate the arts really!

The detail about the Millenium Mural:

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