Just in time for the Christmas holidays we installed the ‘Fantasy Plant Shop’.
On Monday 23rd of December Last Legs Community Arts Organisation set up a ‘pop up’ art installation in a Central Drive Shop at Bethesda Square (previously Mickeys Carpets) in Blackpool the same shop where ‘Dr Evoes Pet Shop’ was previously housed as part of the Culture Shops initiative in 2013 and has been created by the same artists Boz Phillips and Lee Fitzgerald.
All the art on display has been the work of the local community including pupils at Revoe Learning Academy. Boz Phillips and Lee Fitzgerald set up workshops with the participants to support intergenerational community arts activities for the project.
‘Last Legs’ – Boz Phillips and Lee Fitzgerald approached LeftCoast earlier this year for funding to support the local community with publicising their community garden situated at the back of Lady Smith House, Ibbison Court.
The community have worked hard with GroundWork and the Council to set up the garden and are still seeking volunteers to get involved.
The installation will remain in the shop for one month from 23rd December – January
‘We have worked with the community of Central Drive and Revoe to create a ‘Fantasy Plant Shop’ art installation – Hand Grown Un’s.
After creating ‘Dr Evoes Pet Shop’ last year we received such positive feedback and requests to produce another art installation we decided to seek funding from LeftCoast to carry out this project. The children who designed the fantasy pets/ animals for the ‘fantasy pet shop’ last year really wanted to get involved making the work but we did not have enough funding or time to act on their request. This time thanks to funding from LeftCoast as part of the ‘Growing People – programme,designed to get local communities thinking differently about their green spaces’, we were able to involve school pupils, young people attending the Monday Club at Ibbison Community Center and more of the older community in making the art works. All the art works created for the shop were made using recycled materials.
We worked directly with at least 500 participants on the project with the aim of supporting the community gardeners and give their hard work a higher profile.
By installing more art in empty shop windows on Central Drive people can see there is a really strong sense of community in the area. People there are working very hard to improve the area and need positive creative ideas from everyone to reinforce this.
The community profile recently carried out in the area showed that local people really do want more opportunities for art and creativity there. We are currently in the early stages of setting up art workshops for older people in the area next year.
Working in the area is always a pleasure because the community are so enthusiastic and positive: we will continue to support them by creating opportunities for further arts activities’.
LeftCoast for funding the project
Blackpool Borough Council for the loan of the shop premises
The Revoe-Lution and The New Revoe Residents Association team based at Lady Smith House for their ongoing support and hard work
Revoe Learning Academy for their art works
Bugs to Butterflies for their art works
Susan Howarth and The New Life Church for their art works
The community of Revoe and Central Drive who participated
Shirley McCarten and the Tuesday luncheon club for their support and input
The community gardeners at Lady Smith House, Ibbison Court
Blackpool Family Hostel, Central Drive
Last Legs’ friends and artist colleagues for their help, support.