The Caravan Gallery is thrilled to be working on the Sandwell Pride of Place Project, a major commission from West Bromwich-based arts organisation Multistory for Blast! Festival of Photography, Talks and Walks which will take place across Sandwell from 24 May – 29 June 2019. Details of our Opening Celebration on 24 May can be found here.
Using photography as a starting point we have been working with local people to create a portrait of each town and its inhabitants. Our findings will form the basis of a large participatory Sandwell Pride of Place Project exhibition for Blast! Festival which will see the former Poundland shop next to West Bromwich bus station turned into a temporary gallery-cum-alternative visitor centre celebrating the multifaceted character and creativity of the area. The opening display will include photographs of Sandwell by The Caravan Gallery, a selection of photo competition entries (closing date 26 April) and a large hand drawn Map of Sandwell to which visitors can add their own observations, thoughts and confessions to create a colourful and entertaining artwork. The exhibition will grow and evolve throughout the festival as visitors add their own Sandwell-related contributions in any medium – stories, poetry, fascinating facts, memorabilia, drawings, paintings, photographs, sculpture etc. all of which may be loaned or donated to the project. Having carried out numerous Pride of Place Projects we never fail to be impressed by people’s generosity and enthusiasm to talk about where they live, and the sheer quantity of material added between our opening parties and closing celebrations is quite staggering!
Since late 2017 we’ve been making regular visits to Sandwell’s six towns – Smethwick, Oldbury, Wednesbury, Tipton, Rowley Regis and West Bromwich – both with and without our mobile gallery. In summer 2018 we took The Caravan Gallery to various locations across Sandwell to meet local people and show them our initial observations of the area.
We’ve set up a dedicated Sandwell Pride of Place Project Facebook group where you can see photos of our adventures and share your own impressions of Sandwell. This short BBC Midlands Today television feature was broadcast towards the end of the project.
How to get involved in the Sandwell Pride of Place Project exhibition created by you!
Download the Press Release for further information.