YOUNG York artists are adding a colourful twist to the city’s iconic heritage landmarks for a summer display at the Bar Convent Living Heritage Centre, Blossom Street.
Award-winning York arts charity New Visuality has worked with children aged five to create the fun, fresh and vibrant artworks, on show in the Colour! exhibition until September 23.
The combination of arts and culture continues in the Bar Convent garden, where an outdoor sketch space has been created with easels and drawing materials, with the invitation to take inspiration from the exhibition and collections to create your own artistic interpretations. Easels are subject to availability and weather permitting.
Under New Visuality’s wing, York’s young artists have reimagined the city’s heritage bolstered by funding from City of York Council’s Micklegate, Clifton, and Westfield wards. They visited the Bar Convent and other heritage sites to find inspiration for their work.
Charity co-director Ails McGee says: “We always love coming over to Bar Convent Heritage Centre with groups of young people. Many of our young participants initially report that heritage and culture are just not for them, for one reason or another, but the warm welcome they receive as soon as they come here helps dispel that notion.
“It’s our job, as a visual charity, to build on the groundswell of enthusiasm and encourage creative responses that we can then exhibit.”
New Visuality spent time working in the Bar Convent archives, helping to realise the vision behind Colour! by briefing the young artists to take photos, find photos and use innovative AI technology for the first time to create digital pieces such as Ethan Wood’s Bar Convent Overgrown (with pink), Rosie Measor’s Beatles and Alfie Wood’s Hippopinkimus.
Co-director Greg McGee says: “Heritage without innovation is just history. This project has brought so much joy to our young artists and is a microcosm of what Bar Convent continues to do so well, which is to intersect tradition and technology. The future is indeed bright.”
Dr Hannah Thomas, Bar Convent’s special collections manager, says: “We’re thrilled to be involved in this wonderful project that has enabled us to host these amazing and talented young people.
“The purpose of sharing our collections and history with the public is to preserve the legacy of our house and to celebrate the lives of those who changed the course of history. The younger generations are custodians of this legacy.
“Many young people feel that museums are not for them, and perhaps have a perception of them being boring and dusty places. With the fantastic work done by New Visuality, we can begin to change that idea and show that heritage is for everyone.”
The Colour display is included in admission to the Bar Convent exhibition from 10am; last admission, 4pm. Tickets: 01904 643238 or barconvent.co.uk.