Friday, 15 January 2021

Welcome to Sapphire, Film and news

 To have time is a wonderful thing and lockdown can provide that, as can Sapphire's new role in Shallal!

Welcome to Sapphire and we are so looking forward to the wonderful things which will grow from this mutual opportunity.

Thank you to Barbara Santi, Reaching Communities, Rank Foundation and our Trustees for enabling this to happen.

Happy New Year to everyone (despite the challenges and hardships of another lockdown)

We hope we can learn further resilience, adaptability, community and strength and use the time to renew systems for positive change.

So much is going on across Shallal, i had hoped to post our end of term newsletter, compiled by Phoebe, but it's proving challenging, so if anyone would like a copy, please email me or Phoebe:

Liskeard group made the move into Zoom provision this term and it was so enjoyable to join in their first session and see friendly faces, dancing outdoors, in care homes and front rooms.

New people join us, as well as old friends.

Friday afternoon Art & Production Zoom hosted our first Film& Video support group ( with Barbara and Lou) and we hope a lot of short experimental work will be supported and enabled from Shallal artists.

a taster of recent film:

Drawn together from Back Lane West residency 2020 by Anna Willis

Sapphire experimenting with mirroring recently:

Welcome also to Julie and Becky who have moved to Cornwall and were established in Arty Party. 

' a group of over 100 people with learning disabilities, meeting in Telford and Shropshire to explore, perform, create and celebrate art'

I recognise Becky in this lovely film, in the pink dress!


We look forward to learning from Julie and Becky and sharing skills! 

So here's to another term of creativity and fun.

Our poetry book is finally fully available, many thanks to everyone especially Phylly.
Suggested price £15 plus p&p email.
feedback "I received the Shallal book - what a beauty it is - congratulations and thanks so much!"

and finally a reminder of Whats on across Shallal in groups a week below:
(Studio - Although unable to meet in Shallal Studio during lockdown Studio artists continue to support each other and work together via all means possible: post, FB, Zoom etc and have 2 beautiful Zines £3 and some Postcards created and for sale again email

from a new participants form

 'Did you come to Shallal with any particular aims?'
"More confidence, fun special time together, expression and communicating without words" 

Monday, 4 January 2021

Shallal2 Christmas Tree/s 2020

Question...What is the connection from Rumi to UFO's?

Answer...Shallal 2 Christmas tree decorations!

"Rumi’s work often has an emphasis on the inner journey we all go on during life and as the theme was journeying, I thought that it would be nice to include an element of Rumi in the decoration. I wanted to pick an extract that was relevant to any one of us as a sort of talisman for recovery, so I chose a phrase from Rumi that has helped me in times of recovery. It reminds me that when I am wounded (physically or emotionally) it is also an opportunity to heal and to move forward on my path in life. I also find it magical that the phrase was written in the 14th century, and it has survived till now so that we can read it today!" from Sapphire

that along with Harry Potter, skating penguins, and wheels!


Tuesday, 15 December 2020

Jo L recovery

  "I had major surgery on Wed 18th November. A week later, whilst horizontal in my hospital bed, having had a gruelling time, I noticed it was just gone 5pm. An idea popped into my somewhat hazy brain... I have my mobile, I have headphones, I have my face and hands... And so I suddenly decided to join our regular Shallal2 session! What joy! It felt funny and cheeky to take part in a public, yet very private setting. We all know how Zoom has limitations and we miss being able to interact in a large space. But how perfect Zoom was for me in that moment! In usual circumstances I simply wouldn't have been in the room. I was able to connect with my gang, be playful with my restricted movement. And it gave me the beauty of connectivity at a time of isolation, especially as no hospital visitors allowed. 

I was very touched by the video the group had made for me, with them moving to the 'Plymouth Lights' track which I love.
I found myself remembering the phrase I came up with several years ago: 'Shallal makes life better'. At times of stress and trauma it is especially true."

Considering those alone, especially in hospital, and in times of stress or trauma, we have made the private video we made for Jo public, you can watch it at

Saturday, 5 December 2020

Remote Residency - so much going on


Remote Residency
Back Lane West 2020

We kicked off with our Shallal Visioning, so good to be all together, and to have Manda with us.
We hope to create some small groups to take forward and explore ideas.

Thank you to Charlotte Bond who came along and has been reflecting back to us with her experience recently.
 "fantastically useful… So lovely how much goodwill Shallal generates" feedback from our chairperson

Wednesday 18 November we sat on Zoom with 25 - 31 people for Regenerative Visions for the Arts in Cornwall Part 2
Thank you again to Manda for all her free time, expertise, enthusiasm and generous spirit and to everyone involved, including local artists and artists from  Bristol Artist-Led Forum, Peter Lefort from Cornwall Council, Redwing Gallery, 

some extracts from the chat...

 "....have very much enjoyed listening to this. The sport and physical activity sector has been hit equally hard by Covid. There is a natural overlap around between the 2 sectors through mediums such as Dance - but I think so many more opportunities to work together to support communities and people in places. Both Sport England and The Arts Council support similar projects in places."

"Creatives could be at the heart of this process, artists are good networkers and often see the connections and relationships between things and visualise lots of things at the same time. Good to hear about how to communicate with the council." 

"A useful meeting. It was especially good to have Peter Lefort here. We have been trying to make contact with Cornwall Council re our arts hub/ housing co-op" - Redwing Gallery

"Totally agree that these types of conversations are not happening at the strategic systems level...... Happy to keep that conversation going if useful."

(I was invited to talk briefly at Cornwall Doughnut Collective on Dec 1and there were 67 people present - on zoom of course-, here's hoping for rolling forward positive change and responses, it's encouraging so many were there, and already small important conversations happening, again thank you to Manda, Peter Lefort, Cornwall Council and Rachel Turner, Exeter uni, Penryn campus) 

Dance & Draw
Using the title of an old pre Shallal, Art Share project where Lisa Mortensen met us, for our new exploration in Back Lane West and beyond time.

Sent out large tubes containing strong tracing paper and acrylic markers and some suggestions to 11 dancers/artists in Shallal.

I was quite nervous about this as is a 'big' ask - literally .
However i was reassured when George phoned and he and Sam sent in some photos - thank you both.

'Opening the mystery tube, 
is Sam as tall as his arms are wide? 
Experimenting with the paint pens on a bit of the tracing paper, '
we tried to send human size paper

email instructions...

Inspired by You (and Anna and an artist she follows....)
I would like us to explore  
Dance & Draw 

We will be sending you:
 1.A sheet of strong tracing paper - you can add tape to the sides, to try to prevent it ripping  if needed - i was going to do this but have left it for you to decide.

2. nontoxic black and white acrylic pens

The suggestions is to: mark make, draw, on this paper 
to create a large image of your choice
that  you can: move with, around, respond to, photograph, hang on a wall, in a doorway, in nature, from a tree?'s your choice

Please send us a photo and or film of you with it.

Please keep us in the loop as much as you would like as you develop your work, responses and ideas.

[Once we have completed this
we may develop a 
2nd stage and get some canvas and paints
share shapes/strips and work at a distance collaboratively with other artists]

Ideas could include responses to::
Dance shapes and lines
Flowers, fields 

"....lovely to be on Anna's presentation it was really professional, relaxed and inspiring...she's a credit to.... Shallal way of creating."

 an artist said ".. she'll be sprawling herself around a big piece of paper soon."

20 in zoom audience 
We hope to have a limited access film available soon.

Cuthbert Willis' talk on 27 November had an audience of 19.
It was fascinating and I was impressed to see Miles' 6 or 7 drawings from it when we chatted later on in Art Zoom. They clearly documented the journey through the talk and he and Zoe really responded to the blue light...
"All Brilliant
Thank You All".  audience feedback

Sapphire Sumpter's 3 zoom sessions of 'Sharing Amici' were a wonderful treat,
and attracted an average of 20-25 each session,                                                                            with Wolfgang, Colm and some of Amici attending and even a Japanese family.
Wolfgang explained the 'Tower of Mothers' history and choreography which Sapphire introduced to us. 
The overall feedback from Shallal dancers included: 
"Very Good" 
"Loved it" 
"Really good, really nice"
"Loved stories, context, depth, choreography."

Both talks and the sessions attracted people from outside Shallal. We are getting used to publicising on Eventbrite, and it enables a far greater audience reach, recently a student in Italy in lockdown in her flat for the past 2 weeks joined a Wonderful Words session.

Sapphire has been awarded a Time to Shine leadership placement for a year! starting in January, we are so thrilled to have her working with us and developing new ideas and possibilities. (Thank you to Barbara for support in application)

We hope to continue offering a Space for artists sharing and talks over Zoom, so we can learn from each other and delve deeper into practice, conversations and cross overs. So far Phoebe,  Zoe, Tina, Glen, Joseph and Colin, Eddie - music, are considering it.
A really pleasing outcome for throughout Shallal from Sapphires initial wish to share practice. 

Confirming that our Annual Back Lane West Residency never ceases to enable us to go deeper and stretch further, and enjoy the shared creative visions and enthusiasm.

Initiatives from past residencies include:  
a 3 month summer residency at Porthmeor Studios, St Ives, including a Shallal 2 performance, 
Pop Up Performances, 
Poem, R&D ladder balancing with film, for Ladders and Footprints Show, 
Embodied Space at Newlyn Art Gallery with Peter Freeman, 
Toby's illustrations for Shallal's new Poetry book.

The Poetry book is coming soon after some publishing delays. 
Many thanks to Phlly Blundel our book designer, and more, for bringing it all together, and being so nice to work with.

Eddie has successfully drawn portraits over Zoom in a positive initiative for lockdown as Open Studios was cancelled

Best wishes and speedy recovery to Jerry Drew and Jo Lumber. 
Jo has been dropping into sessions on Zoom and entertaining us all from her various recovery places! Showing that truly we can outreach on zoom to hospital beds, waiting rooms, and convalescence.

Today we decorate then photograph our Shallal 2 outdoor Christmas Trees for the online celebration and for Jo as they will be outside her front steps...more next time...

so much going on in Shallal these days..thank you to one and all!

A time for clearing up and in my drafts found this:
so worth watching...

Tuesday, 24 November 2020

Barbara's show reel and film clips

 Some interesting film clips:

 spot yourself or those you know? interspersed through this showreel of Barbara's

recent highlights from you tube!

I'm a bit late coming to appreciate DV8... and the amazing performances of David Toole who died recently.

2 of my new favourite dances! love the filming, simple in shot of first dance...

Wednesday, 11 November 2020

Zoom events , Back Lane West , Great Imagining Symposium & talks!

 So much going on i haven't had time to write more here!

Yesterday saw 12 people 'Having Fun with Words' from Italy and Spain to just 'down the lane'

with Jo Lumber and Debbie O'Nyons

more to come...

many thanks to Reaching Communities Emergency Fund

we are excited to join in with Sapphire, 'Sharing Amici'.
One of life's wonderful circles as Sapphire works with Amici and Wolfgang Stange, who inspired and supported me when i dropped out from a degree to dance more in his sessions over 30 years ago and the rest is history!
All of Shallal is from his initial inspiration and of all the supportive and talented artists i have met along the Shallal expands and takes on more and more of others vision, enthusiasm and experience.

Friday we have our annual Visioning Event, (in these times it will be on Zoom) for everyone related to Shallal, come and add your voice and inspiration to how we develop. 2-4pm 
We will be joined by Manda Brookman, introducing Doughnut Economics and positive ways forward so the planet is considered with the people. A trustee said to me it is already inherent in Shallal and i agree most of us are in harmony with the concept so we aim to listen, learn, consider and improve, refine and challenge ourselves.

Going deeper on from the Visioning and in a spirit of collaboration and wider Sharing we are really pleased to host:

who would have known sitting in an Economics module along with Sociology and Politics in the first year of a degree would have provided helpful tools and come to the fore again in this ...( an eldest daughter graduating from an Environmental Science degree also helps)

We need everyone onboard and all the tools we can to get through the coming challenges...
Highly recommend Manda Brookman of Cafe Disruptif and am really grateful for her time and energy. 

I recently was asked to be on a panel:

Action Research Symposium 1.0 | The Human Ecosystem - How do we relate to ourselves?

find my talk from 44.00 for 6 minutes, it's a bit all over the place as was trying to pick up threads from the other speakers contributions...
The Great Imagining are seeking to get in touch with people who might like to contribute to their vision and action
 The Great Imagining 
Empowering schools to be at the heart of transformation
towards a Greener, Fairer, Kinder world


Finally ART
and we would have been in Back Lane West Studio from 11 Nov -9 Dec
However lots online and remote working and ideas, conversations, explorations:
...currently waiting to send out roles of tracing paper and pens to make large drawings/mark making at home to 10 artists/dancers.
And i am grateful to my children who support ( and tolerate me), Anna is back dropping into Shallal 2 and supports Michael making many of our posters. A highlight and focus of our first family lockdown was listening to Michaels' ideas around colour as he researched his dissertation and he shares some of what he discovered in this talk. 

It builds nicely on from our R&D work with light artist Peter Freeman last year.  
It was so good to see instagram posts of his lights at Jubilee Pool in a collaboration with Lou Brett - Awen

Shallal Sketchbooks has commisioned work and continues to thrive thanks to Claire and Nikki Kelly ( trustee) and all the supportive team especially Lou, Lisa and Colin.
Picture Post was very popular and they have printed a Zine. I was looking forward to buying one at  Christmas Open Studios, Krowji - but that is cancelled due to lockdown.
The Community groups go well and are a tribute to the creativity of everyone involved and are rolled out in a person centred, group dynamic way each group has it's own personality.

Finally our poetry book has a final visit back to the printers and hopefully will be with us soon.


Friday, 16 October 2020

Birthday Cake Recipe

 and then there's CAKE

                      Miles pre birthday Shallal2 celebration at the end with Jo and ? and Demelza

an important part of family occasions especially Birthdays which we like to keep....

(we have vegan recipes but they are other peoples and copyrighted and tend to be tray bakes)

and then of course fruit as a healthy option so... 

for basic cake...which can be adapted for many flavours..just add your own...

"Toby regularly asks me to share a birthday cake recipe so here goes:
Very simple adaptable basic sponge recipe from my mum!
( i try to use organic, free range and local suppliers)
ratio 1:2

4 eggs
8oz butter or margarine
8oz self raising flour
8oz sugar ( i like dark sugar unless making victoria sponge type)
(put oven on at 160 or gas 3 to warm up)

add all to a bowl 
mix and beat to make light and airy

oil - 2 shallow tins (or put into bun cases or larger tray bake or...)
put mixture in tin/s
cook at 160 for approx 20 minutes then check and leave in until firm to touch  
( approx 10mins cooking time for buns)
leave to cool then turn out onto wire rack

for Carrot cake add 2? grated carrots, and cinnamon 2 tsps ( can also add raisins, mashed banana and grated apple) other spices nutmeg, all spice, lemon or orange zest etc

for Chocolate cake add cocoa powder 1-2 tbsps

Have Fun ....happy baking
love Jo x"