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This project invites workplace, neighbourhood, educational and community groups (for example: sports and recreational groups, schools, aged care services, children’s services, welfare services, arts organisations, Municipal Councils, Unions, religious and non-denominational groups, charities) to think about what inspires and motivates their community life. This invites consideration of the conversation that arises around the annual Blake Prize, which explores issues of difference, belief and the nature of hope in Australian society.
The Focus Question
In developing this project in a specific community a local organiser would ask participants the following one or more questions as a focus for their creative work:
- What does spirituality mean to you?
- What creates meaning or hope in my life?
- What does human justice look like?
- Where do I find the strength and faith to live my life to the fullest?
These are not only questions of spirituality and belief but also questions that face all human beings and healthy communities. Different communities will find significance in different aspects of these questions and can apply them as appropriate to their situation. The Blake Society would like to allow for flexibility in finding the focus question as we recognise communities differ in their nature. The Blake Society can assist in developing the best focus question for your group.
The Creative Process
Participating communities are then invited to organise a process where their members are encouraged to create an artwork or poem based on the focus question. Participants will then be encouraged to display their creative outcomes and engage their local communities through an exhibition, display, performance, reading or other public platform. You may like to seek the assistance of a local artist or poet, or use the resources of your City or Municipality cultural officer.
In terms of the production of works during the project, the following guidelines have been created to ensure flexibility and cost effectiveness for participants. You may like to use some or all of these art forms. The choice should be made on the basis of what is easy to manage in your local situation and how they can be easily displayed, given your resources.
Two dimensional Media: Drawings, Paintings, Photography, wall based sculpture, maximum A3 size (420 x 297 mm) either landscape or portrait format.
Sculpture: That could easily sit on a surface dimension of 300mm x 300mm.
Digital Media Works: Sound, animation or film up to 5 minute’s duration.
Poetry: The length of the poem is determined by its presentation on a single A4 page.
Communicating Project Outcomes
The completion of creative work by participants should be based on a timeline that suits local needs. The opportunity then arises for the display or presentation of these works to the local community and the general public. This allows for participants to interact with each other as well as providing an opportunity for further dialogue and discussion of the themes. This may take the form of an exhibition and could be easily mounted in community facilities, or local libraries or foyers of public buildings. An appropriate opening event might be arranged, or a seminar or dialogue about the process with participants. Again the Blake Society can help you work out what is best for your situation.
Review Project Outcomes
At the completion of the project participants and project organisers will be able to provide feedback about their involvement in the project. The Blake Society will document local outcomes through its website and other means, so local communities can interact wider afield with diverse groups working on similar questions through the creative arts. This helps to build the conversation, creating new communities of interest and understanding.