Making A Mark 2019 is set to be bigger and better than ever. Our Arts Council funding bid was successful so once again we’ve been able to commission local artists and activities. Where last year we addressed the issue of increased use of food banks, this year’s theme addresses the impact of single-use plastics on our oceans.
There is a vibrant selection of activities taking place this year so do please put Saturday 15th June 2019 in your diaries and make sure you are in Preston and on the Flag Market by 12 noon when it all kicks off.
The fun will start as the old red cart, part of Lubaina Himid and Susan Walsh‘s Feast Wagons installation, will once again be led through the city streets by the fabulous Worldwise Samba Drummers. This brought an incredible energy to the event last year so we wanted to do a repeat performance and Lubaina kindly agreed. The cart will be collecting empty plastic bottles on its’ journey and will arrive on the Flag Market at noon.
On the Flag Market, our own Tim Saunders (aka Tim’s Perspective Art) will be creating a huge art installation from plastic bottles – you may remember his tinned food installation from last year so this year, please bring your empty bottles along and contribute to this. All plastic bottles will be recycled at the end of the day.
On arrival the old red cart will be parked up and become the base for Daveid Darbyshire‘s giant milk bottle top sculpture with a child-friendly workshop to make sculptures, so please bring your foil milk bottle tops along. This installation is to encourage people to go back to using a milkman rather than buying milk in single-use plastic containers.
Also on the Flag Market will be a giant Fish Tank – yes, you read that correctly – this will be a large art installation featuring suspended sea creatures, with an ocean floor, coral reefs etc, all made from discarded plastics. Family-friendly workshops will run alongside, led by local artists Sally Dyer and Becky Atherton so everyone can join in, make sea creatures and suspend them in the tank.
Preston Youth Theatre will also be back, this time enacting the plight of sea creatures that become entangled in discarded fishing nets. The large fishing net is being made from discarded yarns by our own Caroline Finnigan and along with fellow Oxheys artist Evelyn Rose, is also making the costumes.
As last year, the Artists Showcase will feature a number of visual artists, including Les Darwell, Colin Binns, Gavin Renshaw, Olivia Keith, working on easels, engaging with visitors and portraying the events going on around them, along with Creative Routes. Winston Plowes, the popular poet from last year is also back and will be encouraging visitors to help make a new poem. Des Butler will also be there with his Recycling Robot, so don’t miss that! A number of musicians including the Soundskills team led by Chris Davis will be on the stage, featuring music from Harvey Brittain, Daniel Squires, Brookie Offbeats and a performance by a local choir. Also back are Cacophany Arkestra who provided much fun last year.
Inside the Harris Museum you will find photographic evidence of a research project, documenting the process of plastics recycling, from roadside collection through to sorting, processing and redistribution, by our own Denise Swanson created with the help and support of Preston City Council and Lancashire Renewables. Alongside the display will be an exhibit showing what plastic items can and cannot be recycled. The team from Plastic Free Preston will also be on hand to answer questions and offer advice on alternative options to single-use plastic.
Outside the Harris during the event, a recycling truck will be parked up ready to take away all the plastics for recycling – the driver Jed will be happy to let children go inside the cab and show them how it works.
Also inside the Harris will be a small pop-up exhibition showing work created by the artists on the Flag Market during the event along with any made by the public they’d like to display.
Included in this mini exhibition will be the Albert Richardson Memorial Portfolio – a collection of artworks donated by local artists in memory of our lovely landlord and former Mayor of Preston who sadly passed away last year. Turner-Prize winning local artist Lubaina Himid CBE will say a few words. The pop-up exhibition will stay in place for the weekend.
Upstairs in the Harris will be the Big Draw event, run by our own Bernie Velvick wearing her ArtFull hat – places must be booked in advance for that however.
As you can see, it is going to be a busy day with lots going on – do come along and join in or just enjoy watching others make their mark.
In the meantime, perhaps we can all give a little more thought when we buy single-use plastics and what we do with them afterwards.