Community Art at The Beaney

On a recent visit to The Beaney in Canterbury, Kent, I was really happy to discover several excellent examples of community art projects. I think it’s great that The Beaney works so actively with a broad range of community groups.

Here’s what I discovered …

001 An insight into art therapy

I’ve been interested in art therapy for a while. I’ve read quite a bit about it, so it was great to see the output of a real life art therapy group. I thought the range of imagery was fascinating and I loved reading the little quotes from the participants themselves.

Though I had no idea what to expect, somehow I could really recognise how the motifs the participants employed in their images, really directly related to the processing of their personal emotions. Motifs such as eyeballs, falling figures, distant horizons and little houses.

by Emily Crow
Works by Becky Roberts (left) and Kevin Kendaru (right)
Works by Reiltin Tighe (left and centre), Jade Lawless (right), Emma Edwards (far right)

The art therapy group and exhibition was organised by Joyce Oates in collaboration with Live Well Kent and Shaw Trust.

002 In My Shoes

A group of works made by 26 young refugees working with Kent Refugee Action Network.

003 Shared Works

Kent Refugee Action Network had also worked with local refugees to facilitate the making of shared works. I was fascinated to see these and learn about the methods involved.

I particularly love seeing these hopeful little houses given sanctuary within the old building of The Beaney, with dark gilt-edged oil paintings hanging in the distance.
Interesting to see time used as a boundary of participation.
004 A personal story

I was really moved to read Meron Yemane’s personal story and proud to see The Beaney holding space for his story and works.

Mother, by Meron Yamane.