Covver’s might have been watching the recent progress of a Facebook page called Sitting Rooms of Culture. Set up in the time of Covid and designed to give local artists a platform to both share their artwork and comment on how the pandemic situation was affecting them, the page soon became a supportive and creative hub. Obviously there was the Coventry City of Culture in development at the same time so information and debate about how that was panning out became a topic of hot debate on the SROC page. Clearly a lot of local artists felt overlooked and used the page to air their grievances. Which in turn led to support and the setting up of events positively running in parallel to COC.
Amongst other things, online workshops grew from this during lockdowns and all local artists were invited to take part.
Wonderful things quickly began to happen and Heather Davidson was able to set up the Coventry Peace Orchard, a separate project I’ll be blogging on very soon.
Coventry Indoor market gifted the group some empty stalls to set up a pop up gallery style space that will be used for all manner of positive artistic projects. Officially opening on Saturday 31st July, there will be an open house taster event, showcasing local artists and musicians, pop up stalls and all round, a very cool event.
I popped in to see how this space was coming together and was very pleasantly surprised to find a truly encouraging vibe. Heather and Mahendra were there and it was just fantastic to hear their ideas and feel their genuinely balanced enthusiasm. An artist called Katie O was helping to tart up the arena with mural style painting. Maker of things/Creator Mark Andrews was giving input to proceedings and will be one of the future participating artists among many. I can see this space, the fb page, the vibe the group are creating all definitely leading on to giving Coventry a much bigger and informative art network than it already has.
If you would like to participate in this new space in any way, pop down to the market and check it all out.
The foundation of the page was built by Heather Davidson, artist and all round community mover and shaker, Kirsty Brewerton, singer and artist, Secretary Kath Lole, and lastly, Mahendra Patel, Drummer, workshop organiser and broad spectrum fount of wisdom. Mary Courtney was also instrumental in its birth and is a big part of the admin.
The criteria of this new found group is quite simple. Creativity not negativity. No competition only support. Lead by example. More art less politics. Connectivity and inclusivity. Open to all. To live it with fun in mind. And with Mahendra appointed specifically to deal with negative comments posted on the page, the simple basic ethos of the group was established. If only all organisations had these ideas at root, the world could become a very beautiful place. I wish the space in the market the best of luck and will be getting involved myself most definitely. Watch this space for updates on progress.