Artists will create a ‘suburban safari’ of animal-themed artworks in the high streets. Students will also be encouraged to take part and work with artists to create the artwork as part of their curriculum. Art will be installed in places agreed by the community and by the artist including ‘pocket parks’, suitable nooks and crannies, doorways, shops and public buildings. The public, especially children and young people, will be encouraged to find the animals and take their own ‘safari selfies’ to upload to social media. At the end of the commission the artworks will belong to the community. Some will remain on permanent display (typically sculptures and installations) or might be sold off and the proceeds used to commission new items or maintain the permanent ones. SEE3 and Sydenham Arts will stage regular free ‘High Street Happenings’ - live music, dance and drama performances including a large-scale 4th of July Street Celebration to launch Sydenham Arts Summer Festival 2015.
What we'll deliver:
Why it's a great idea:
The high streets in the SEE3 area need more animation, excitement and footfall. Many local artists, both professional and amateur, will relish the opportunity to create highly visible artworks for the area. The safari will bring together three well-established local initiatives (SEE3, Sydenham Arts Ltd & Sydenham Artists) providing a focal point for families, schools, artists and businesses. Artworks will be site-specific and relate to the local areas, eg. Horniman Museum’s walrus, the mythical Sydenham dragon and black panther, the Crystal Palace park dinosaurs, as well as hybrid creatures from the artists’ imagination. This project will inspire a range of people of all ages, including community groups and traders, to engage with public art, explore their high streets, interact with artists, businesses and their local community in an original way. Sydenham Arts’ festivals and SEE3’s High Street Happenings have proven there is a local appetite for regular high-street focused animation.
Steps to get it done:
This project is a joint initiative by three very active community groups and organisations: SEE3, Sydenham Arts and Sydenham Artists, which have historically always included animation, activities and events in THREE high street locations - Forest Hill, Kirkdale and Sydenham. We have shown on the map just ONE of these locations - the ‘pocket square’ at Venner Rd, near to Sydenham station - as this will be a focal point for Sydenham Arts Summer Festival’s launch event and will feature on the Safari trail. This trail will extend from Horniman Museum, through Forest Hill, the length of Kirkdale, and from Cobbs Corner Sydenham to Sydenham Community Library at Home Park, Lower Sydenham.
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