Celebrating the evocative envelope and the diminishing art of letter writing in a contemporary context this project set out to connected people across West Cork both in the Arts for Health care settings and out into the community, with potential and artists ambition to continue it beyond.
The team of artists working with the programme manager, initiated this project through their regular monthly meetings, with a motivation to work together and to connect up the people they worked with working. All eleven healthcare settings took part, with an agreed multi-disciplinary approach that reflected each of the artists unique approach to their work. The initial idea was fielded out and discussed with hospital residents, people attending day care and healthcare staff to and each month brought back to the meeting to develop. This inspirational project was realised over a seven month period and involved complex coordination to reach the wide number of participants involved.
Together the participants and artists re-lived the enjoyment in writing and the thrill of receiving a letter; referencing historic letters, famous love letters, facsimiles and the power that people imbue in the words. Each person was invited to create an envelope containing precious items, words of wisdom, musical notes, song words or a new creation. Exploring a variety of materials and processes; written, montaged, painted, printed, or sung. They were fastened with twine, franked with a stamp or sealed with wax.
The collection of correspondence were gathered together, displayed and installed alongside a writing bureau, in a studio at Uillinn West Cork Arts Centre, during Bealtaine as part of the annual exhibition 1- 31 May. The carefully arranged installation invited viewers to participate in the process, to sit at the bureau and create their own inspired by the messages around them.
The project began in October 2015 and continued until May 2016
“If you are making things like this Auntie Mary, you’re in a brilliant place” On giving a printed envelope card she had made to her Nephew.”