Artist James Aldridge and his project partners Andover Trees United and Chapel Arts Studios are proud to announce an exhibition of artworks showcasing the latest 6 Flowers 6 Trees project: Ash Tree Stream.
Andover Trees United is a local environmental education and conservation charity. Their ‘6 Trees and 6 Flowers’ work aims for all children leaving primary school to be able to recognise and name 6 British native trees and 6 local wildflowers, further supported by the work of local musicians, storytellers, visual artists, crafters, writers and performers as well as environmental experts, gardeners, and school teachers.
James says, “Over a year ago, I secured funding from Arts Council England and Chapel Arts Studios on behalf of Andover Trees United, the funds enabled me to develop a new body of work: my own research into Ash trees and Ash Die-Back, and ways of working with schools/communities and their local trees that can be applied to other towns as well. This comes at a time when an appreciation of the need for and value of trees within our communities is increasing in the face of climate and ecological breakdown.”
Ash Tree Stream has enabled children and staff to use visual arts processes outside of the classroom to learn about Ash trees and Ash dieback disease within the context of local cultural heritage and climate change.
The ‘Ash Tree Stream’ project (Sep 2019 – Nov 2020) culminates in an exhibition of artwork and project documentation put together by artist and project leader James Aldridge, and CAS curator Susan Francis.
The show will take place at Chapel Arts Studios (CAS) in St Mary’s Cemetery, central Andover from 3 – 14 November 2020, a stone’s throw from the town’s namesake. Andover is thought to get its name from ‘‘on dubr’ meaning Ash Tree Stream.
The following schools have taken part in artist-led outdoor learning as part of the Ash Tree Stream project: Andover Church of England Primary School, Appleshaw St Peters Primary School, Harrow Way Community School (Secondary), Portway Junior School, Vernham Dean Gillum’s Church of England Primary School.
Boy and a Fox by James Aldridge
The year long mutual learning journey of artist, children and staff, included children meeting and learning about the work of a professional artist James Aldridge.
James supported the children to develop new artistic skills through documenting their experiences of Ash Trees and their place in their local heritage. Activities included mapping the location of local Ash trees, creating artwork around Ash trees from local materials, drawing with sticks, leaves and berries, and recording local sounds. James Aldridge and ATU Education Officers Becky McGugan and Emily Roper supported teachers to explore the value of art within outdoor learning, as a way of enabling learning through the whole person – their body, emotions and imagination, as well as intellect. This partnership between the artist and ATU Education Officers, was supported by funding from the Ernest Cook Trust champions of outdoor learning.
Image: school teachers enjoying an inset day at Chapel Arts Studios
Newly opened to the public, CAS is getting inventive about how you will be able to access the show safely under pandemic conditions. There will be a series of online and virtual events that run alongside the Ash Tree Stream exhibition to make it easier for the general public to access the results of this project.
Ash Tree Stream Exhibition at CAS:
3rd to 14th November 2020
James’ 7 Day Instagram Takeover @CASartists:
4th – 11th November 2020
James’ IGTV Interview @CASartists:
Wed 11th November (time to be decided)
Panel Discussion ‘Art in Environmental Education’:
Wed 4 November 4.30pm – 6.30pm on Zoom
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posted on AshTreeStream.com
It’s been brilliant to have people responding to Ash Tree Stream posts by sharing their own favourite Ash Trees on Twitter and Facebook, and writing poetry. Read more…