The conversation went well. A big thanks to Sophie, Sam, Pat and Fiona for coming along. Sophie and Sam work as Youth Workers for the Tiree Trust and Pat is a voluntary Director. Fiona is a fellow student on the Art and Social Practice course. The group was positive about the idea of ‘something big made by Tiree people’. Something to visit. Something that spans the age barrier between parents and children. Something that blends old and new traditions.
We talked about the difficulties in getting people involved. Although there are 51 different community groups on Tiree! Ideas that came up:
- Knitting - a traditional art
- Hynish Teas as an ‘exhibition space’
- Mental wellness and the need to make as a protective space
- Mending as a possible theme
- An Turas for display – could we change it?
- There are lots of opportunities around the pier area – empty buildings, the pier ‘waiting room’
- The Skate Park plans incorporating a giant something…. accordion?
- A sculpture of what groups think Tiree is
- Reflecting on what Tiree means to you and the idea of asking everyone on Tiree for 5 words on ‘what Tiree means to you'
This last suggestion seemed to capture the group’s attention. Ideas for how the words could be used flowed. A book, audio, visual art?
Some of the things I planned for were included. My plan helped me remember some pics of projects to help set a context. I was pleased that I managed to keep my gob shut quite a lot and provide a space for others to speak. Allowing pauses is effective.
The glass making went smoothly. The making was with no direction on content apart from each person having a smaller piece of a bigger thing. I think this was okay given time constraints and caution of some participants. But was a bit of a cop out too. The process may have benefited from more direction, like some of the ideas discussed in the plan, to try to create a piece with ‘meaning’. Everyone learned to cut glass and overall it was a good ‘taster’ with some experimentation thrown in.
It might have been good to go outside for 2 mins before we got into the making – or to have sent them and I could have got more prepared. But mainly to give a sense of stillness before starting to make.