Tuesday, 9 August 2016

Portmeor Studios host Exhibition of Shallal Dance Theatre Photographs by Andy Parker

My helpers Luke and Michael in the early morning! 
Doesn't seem a year ago we were there in residency at Studio 11, and Jo L in Shallal 2 still remembers performing in Studio 5 as a highlight ( Anna doesn't agree as i sprung a final unexpected dance on her!)

The copy for the exhibition ...compiled by Chris Hibbert
Manager, Borlase Smart John Wells Trust
Porthmeor Studios
Back Road West
St Ives TR26 1NG

Shallal – Community Dance Theatre

Shallal is an inclusive arts charity based in Cornwall. It started over twenty five years ago with an inclusive community dance theatre company and became a charity in 2005. Shallal runs ongoing community groups, specialist sessions and a main dance theatre company.
The Shallal Studios Residency at Porthmeor in 2015 concluded with an amazing dance performance in Studio 5 at the end of September, and this beautiful collection of photographs by Andy Parker is a reminder of this performance.

Photographer Andy Parker became part of Shallal Dance Theatre's life over a span of two to three years, and his images capture moments of rehearsal and performances of "one of most visionary inclusive dance theatre companies in the country" (Rory Mcdermott, BBC Community Arts Fund).

Shallal Creative Director Jo Willis commented "We all loved working with Andy. He brought a shared enthusiasm and generosity to all he did, and this is a reflection of Shallal's work seen through his eyes".

Andy Parker said “My best hope is that by exposing my work to the public will to help to promote a greater understanding, compassion and acceptance within our community, and the achievements to be gained from social inclusiveness.” He added “I believe that nothing can substitute the traditional hand crafted print produced in the darkroom, with its impossibility of exact repeatability, and the inevitability of every print possessing subtle differences no matter how small. Looking at an analogue print is to witness something that does not exist in exactly the same way anywhere else. Each finished print is as singular and as unique as the person or object within the picture.”

Shallal Studios – Porthmeor Residency 2015

Shallal Studios is the new visual arts branch of the charity, Shallal. It aims to raise the glass ceiling encountered by talented visual artists who have support needs and to provide a space for talented emerging artists and artists who like to work in an inclusive environment.
During summer 2015 Shallal Studios enjoyed a three month residency at Porthmeor Studio 11. Shallal had identified visual artists of genuine talent who faced barriers to progressing their art practice, and this residency provided vulnerable artists with the opportunity to work alongside emerging or established professional artists and collaborate with them in a culture of mutual creative benefit.

Artist Lou Brett who helped to manage the project commented “The residency afforded artists of all kinds the time, space and materials required for them to move their art practice forward. For most artists this was connected to taking risks and overcoming psychological barriers which had limited them in terms of medium and subject matter. Many artists with additional needs have extremely limited opportunities to take creative ideas forward, so opening this door offered by Porthmeor was quite profound for them.”

Shallal took part in September 2015 Open Studios where their studio attracted considerable public interest, and the residency concluded with an exhibition at Falmouth Art Gallery in early 2016. The works have now seen by large numbers of people, raising the profile of work by an inclusive studio. The residency also acted as a valuable pilot project. Shallal Studios currently has no permanent studio space and the time at Porthmeor was spent testing out and evaluating how an inclusive studio would work, providing essential facts and figures as well as evidence for future funding partners.

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