When people walk through the reserve on Kelsey Road in the City of Salisbury, they are stepping through visions for the future designed and constructed by Salisbury North residents. The Meeting Places, Local Stories and Hopes for the Future community arts project depicts community pride, and expresses positive memories and hopes, in a reserve that is both community meeting place and informal gathering area.
The project enabled members of the Salisbury North community to record our hopes for the future and the importance of our past, in an artwork that is relevant to our community, says Dorothy Westall, a Salisbury North president.
The Story Stone Wall incorporates more than 100 bricks designed and made by residents. The designs incorporate images depicting each person's story about the area, the past or what they see for the future. A professional artist, Bridgette Minuzzo, led art workshops in which school students, young people and other community members made the pavers.
The project is but one part of the Salisbury North Urban Renewal Project – in which the community contributes to decision making and consultation processes for all arts projects – and is the result of work by the Salisbury North Community Arts Working Party in partnership with Salisbury High School.
Extensive consultation undertaken in Salisbury North identified that the community wanted practical artworks, such as seats, paths and signage, not abstract works of art. They wanted works that reflected positive aspects of local history and projected the community's hopes and aspirations for the future. They wanted works made out of natural materials such as wood and stone.
Members of the Salisbury North Community Arts Working Party worked together to plan the Meeting Places, Local Stories and Hopes for the Future artwork. They developed the brief for the project, participated in all the key decisions, and made parts of the artworks.
The project produced practical artworks that all could use - benches and paths made of familiar materials, such as a mosaic bench (a City Sites project) depicting positive images of Salisbury North, the community and its history.
Resources: Partners included the Salisbury North Urban Renewal project (comprising City of Salisbury, Housing Trust and Department of Human Services), the Salisbury Enterprise High School and Hallett Bricks (sponsorship). City Sites is a Carclew Youth Arts Centre project employing young visual artists as trainees under the mentorship of professional artists to produce public artworks.
Courtesy of Creative Communities and the Creating Communities project kit, which comprises:
• Guidelines for developing and maintaining an arts and cultural policy
• Good practice story sheets
• Policy story sheets