New artists, new art forms, new challenges…. This is the first year that Lilac will be working with sound and music. Georgie is the new artist and musician working alongside Milena, a visual artist, who has been coming from time to time to work with Lilac. The theme was an imaginary island but as soon as the instruments appeared, we realised that some people will enjoy the new direction. John immediately picks up the guitar, which he plays beautifully. But for some in the group the musical instruments are challenging. For us artists planning the sessions, the challenge is how to involve everyone and make the sessions interesting for all. Finally we think we have the solution. This group likes to perform. We show them a “krankie” – a hand scroll that unrolls to illustrate a song, which could be performed by our group.
There is an immediate interest and even the people who didn’t like to touch any musical instruments in the previous sessions are enthusiastic. They can see how it can all work together! Now we’ve got a plan, soon we can start making things…
On our imaginary island we need treasure chests and messages that can be stored within. It is amazing to see how much thought and concentration goes into making those. And the messages are all written on beautiful paper.
Next session we will have textile artist Musarat with us. She will help us make some colourful textiles to take with us to our island.
The textiles are finished, cushions are made, we are ready for the next session. Georgie is coming back from her holidays and we are all singing and choosing songs that will illustrate our story. On this island we have all sorts of fantastic animals, beautiful birds, Prince, Elvis… our imagination is working overtime… We are learning things we never knew about each other. Carol suddenly tells us that she played glockenspiel in the youth orchestra and Doris knows the words of Elvis’ songs!
In the new year, in January, we would like to take Lilac to the newly refurbished Art Gallery. When we ask them, the whole group is really excited – it will be such a nice outing, and there is a beautiful tiled cafe in the gallery too. So there is something to look forward to!
We are met by our guide Natalie, who tells us the history of the Art Gallery and all the changes through the last hundred years. The space looks beautiful and inviting. We feel welcome and excited. There is something for everybody here, from grand portraits to abstract and performance art. People are so engrossed in looking at such interesting artworks that they don’t notice our photographer Mat snapping away and documenting our visit.
Towards the end of our visit we go into the activity room and draw, inspired by all the works that are around us. We hardly notice that we have been here for over two hours. Suddenly we realise that it is time to go, taxis are here and we need to leave…
The next session is at Artlink. Milena is worried that there is so much to do and that we won’t finish our “krankie”, because a couple of people who usually come are not present. But there is no need to worry, everybody is working full speed and we managed to finish all the artwork, and still have time to rehearse everything a couple of times. Doris is singing loud and clear. It is amazing how everybody is joining in. Next month, we will film the performance. Lets hope that everybody turns up!