It’s About Time

Head4Arts will be holding free family friendly events to celebrate Earth Hour on Saturday 28th March 2020 at four fantastic locations throughout the eastern Heads of the Valleys area.  Each event will offer a creative exploration of climate change using storytelling, lanterns and butterfly-themed crafts.

These free events which are suitable for all ages will be taking place at Bryn Bach Park, Tredegar, Cyfarthfa Park, Merthyr Tydfil, Blaenavon World Heritage Centre and Library and Penallta Park. 

Earth Hour is a WWF global campaign during which millions of people turn off their lights to raise awareness of climate change.  Earth Hour 2020 will take place between 8.30-9.30pm on 28th March 2020.

Head4Arts activities taking place throughout the day are designed to connect families with Earth Hour and encourage them to switch their lights off for one hour later in the evening to show their shared concern for the planet.  Participants also be invited to pledge one thing they can change to slow down climate change.  

The day’s activities will culminate in a grand finale taking place at Penallta Park.  This evening event will be a unique, time-travelling, interactive experience with spectacular lanterns featuring animals from around the world. 

The theme for this year’s events is It’s About Time, highlighting how climate change is threatening the health of our planet and the wildlife (and humans) that depend on it.  Butterflies have been chosen as the symbol for the events to represent the decline of biodiversity on a local and global scale.  Since 1976, butterflies and moths are among the species that have suffered greatest falls in abundance, with a 52% decline in the average species’ abundance of butterflies being reported in Wales. 

This is the fifth year that Head4Arts has organised events for Earth Hour, Creative Director, Kate Strudwick says

“We are living in a changing world and we hope that our events for Earth Hour 2020 will give families an opportunity to explore climate change in a creative way, and inspire them to embrace the lifestyle changes we will all have to make in future.  Ultimately, addressing climate change and protecting the environment is everyone’s responsibility.”

Listings information for each event

Earth Hour – Parc Bryn Bach Merthyr Rd, Tredegar, NP22 3AY
Saturday 28th March 2020
10am – 12.30pm

Earth Hour – Blaenavon World Heritage Centre & Library
Church Rd, Blaenavon, NP4 9AS
Saturday 28th March 2020
1 – 3pm

Earth Hour – Cyfarthfa Park Brecon Rd, Merthyr Tydfil, CF47 8RE
Saturday 28th March 2020
3pm – 5pm

Earth Hour – Parc Penallta, Penallta Rd, Ystrad Mynach, CF82 7GN
Saturday 28th March 2020
6.45pm – 8.30pm

Keep an eye out for additional information via the website and social media

Project Officer Completes NCLF Leading Learning Programme

We are pleased to report that Head4Arts Project Officer, Bethan Lewis, has recently completed the National Leisure and Culture Forum Leading Learning Programme, a leadership development programme tailored to the needs of the leisure and culture sector.

Bethan received funding from the Arts Council of Wales to enable her to attend this national programme that aims to help cultural managers achieve their full potential. Involvement in the programme has included attending intensive residential workshops, taking part in action learning sets and working alongside a mentor to identify personal development goals.

Bethan described the benefits of the course, stating that “participation in the programme has helped me to develop both personally and professionally. I hope that this will in turn have a positive impact on the work of Head4Arts and potentially on the broader arts sector in Wales”.

To find out more about the National Leisure and Culture Forum Leading Learning Programme please visit the website http://www.ncfleadinglearning.co.uk/ncf.html

 

 

Exhibition in a Box

Head4Arts is pleased to announce that the creative work produced by community groups who took part in Exhibition in a Box will be displayed at Community Showcase events over the next few weeks.

Over 300 community members from across the eastern heads of the valleys region have contributed to this reflective collection of work that explores the theme of silence in connection to the First World War.

Using Exhibition in a Box as the inspiration for their artwork and working alongside professional artists, community groups have chosen to interpret their findings and represent the themes that resonated with them through a range of artforms.

Some examples include:

  • Adhoc Theatre have produced a short film that portrays the silence of those who were “Shot at Dawn”, exploring this topic from different perspectives (Click here to watch the film)
  • Youth groups from the Hwb Blaenavon and Willows Youth Club Troedyrhiw have worked with musician Rufus Mufasa to write and perform poetry that explores the impact of war on all aspects of society (Click here and here to listen to the poems)
  • Pupils from Sofrydd Primary wrote letters, made clay “deepa” lamps and painted batik flags to represent the silence of soldiers from other countries, with a particular focus on the experiences of Indian soldiers during WW1.

The Exhibition in a Box Community Showcase can be viewed at the following venues:

Winding House, New Tredegar between 16th – 19th April

Gwent Archives Ebbw Vale between 23rd – 30th April

Merthyr Tydfil Central Library between 1st – 9th May

Entry is free of charge, normal venue opening times apply

Exhibition in a Box is supported by the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Objects and stories that feature in the exhibition have been gathered with the support of heritage partners Gwent Archives, Glamorgan Archives, the Winding House, Cyfarthfa Castle Museum and Art Gallery, and Amgueddfa Cymru National Museum Wales.

Fold a paper crane to show your support for a healthy planet

In Japan, the crane is a mystical creature and is believed to live for a thousand years. As a result, in the Japanese, Chinese and Korean culture, the crane represents good fortune and longevity.

Many Japanese people make origami cranes. The Japanese word, ‘origami’ is a combination of two words in Japanese: ‘ori’ which means ‘to fold’ and ‘kami’ which means ‘paper.’ It is believed that Japanese origami began in the 6th century and because of the high costs of paper, origami was only used for religious ceremonial purposes.

Traditionally, it was believed that if one folded 1,000 origami cranes, one’s wish would come true. It has also become a symbol of hope and healing during challenging times. As a result, it has become popular to fold 1,000 cranes (in Japanese, called ‘senbazuru’). The cranes are strung together on strings and given as gifts.

Earth Hour is a global activity and Head4Arts wanted to do something which reflected its connection with the rest of the world. We are hope that, by doing joining in with Earth Hour, we will help the good fortune and longevity of the planet.

Switching the lights off for an hour is a symbolic act to show our concern about climate change. We at Head4Arts will be asking people to go a step further: to make a personal pledge to change one thing that could help reduce climate change. We are asking people to write that pledge on each crane that they fold.
To get involved, put 30th March in your diary and come to your nearest event: Parc Bryn Bach, Blaenavon World Heritage Centre, Cyfarthfa Park or Parc Penallta. Times and locations are on this website. Or you could get making your cranes at home – recycled paper only! Watch this short video to see how the origami is done.

With thanks to the Japanese Canadian Cultural Centre for information on cranes.

WWI

Young people from Caerphilly County Borough have created sculptures in commemoration of the First World War.  The artworks were produced during a twelve-week project organised in partnership between Head4Arts and Caerphilly County Borough Council Youth Services Hub Team.

The artworks were created by young people from the Mid Valleys West and Caerphilly Basin Lansbury Park Hub groups.  Both groups were inspired by the centenary of the First World War and decided to make memorials to remember those who were affected by the conflict.

During the project, the young people learned more about World War One by taking part in a research trip to the Imperial War Museum, London.  The groups furthered their creative skills by working alongside professional artists to explore different artforms, including collage and mono-printing with Rhian Anderson and storytelling and performance with Mike Church.

Following this period of creative research, the young people worked with lead artist Cindy Ward to make and design their sculptures.  Both groups have interpreted their findings in different ways to produce two unique pieces of commemorative art; with the Lansbury Park group drawing inspiration from hand painted camouflaged helmets and the Mid Valleys West  group choosing to create a copper silhouette of a WW1 solider.

The young people involved also had an opportunity to work towards an Explore Arts Award accreditation as part of the project.

The sculptures were launched at a presentation event in the Winding House Museum, New Tredegar where they have been displayed throughout the Easter holidays.  The artworks will later be re-located to Van Community Centre and Markham Leisure Centre.

Youth Worker, Deb Greenway said “The young people involved have taken so much from the project, they have been able to learn more about an important part of our history in an engaging and creative way.  Displaying the sculptures in our local museum has enabled lots of community members to view the work and appreciate the talents of our young people”.

For more information about Head4Arts, visit www.head4arts.org.uk  or contact info@Head4Arts.org.uk / 01495 357816