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  • Emily Hayes

Mandalas and Weaving into the Spaces left by Trees

15th September 2020, Ardwick Green,

We had gorgeous weather for the first TLC Art Project workshop since the start of Lockdown in March.

We could only have 6 people meet to make sure we were sticking to the government rule of 6. Which led to these great images of the group, a little piece of history.

Instead of meeting at the drop-in and walking together we each arrived at Ardwick Green under our own steam (mostly on foot). We first walked around the park to look at how powerful nature is, how it takes over. In manmade parks the roots of trees break through the paths and the weeds grow over the edges.

We worked as a group to make two pieces of impermanent art. The first piece was to make a drawing on the floor in the centre of the park inspired by mandalas. Everyone collected leaves, twigs, flowers, berries and lay them on the floor. This worked really well as everyone did one layer of the drawing and then could stand back and observe while others lay theirs down.

We left this on the floor where everyone was walking through the park, we came back an hour later to see how the breeze and people walking past had changed it.

The second piece we created we weaved between trees using flax thread, wool and ribbons. Using large weaves to disturb the spaces between trees and to stop for a moment and consider how we see the everyday spaces around us. These turned into beautiful pieces, dancing in the breeze and bringing festival like colours to the park. Passersby stopped to take in the art being created. We then took it all down as a group, doing this while social distancing meant we had to take our time and only 1 person could do it at once, this was almost meditative.

It was so refreshing and energizing to be together in the park on this lovely late summer afternoon. Here is what some people said about it:

"It was so great to all be together again"

"I am surprised - my legs feel better than before!"

"I feel calm and peaceful, thank you"

Images by Rae Story

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