Sample page from Peter's Comic Book. Artwork and stories by Peter Cutts.
You can read more about The Postal Project at http://thepostalproject.tumblr.com/
"How can images and artifacts be used instead of words in creative dialogue?"
My MA research project: the purpose was to pilot a way of working in which a collaborative exchange of artifacts and images is used as a form of creative dialogue between young people with learning disabilities and practicing adult artists who also have learning disabilities.
I aimed to provide the young participants (two pupils from a special school) with an opportunity to engage in dialogue with successful adult artists who may have experienced similar challenges in life and to use this dialogue to explore and experience the creative process in an appropriate, supportive environment. It was intended that the adult participants would also benefit from the collaboration through the opportunity to collaborate artistically with another group in society and to act as positive role models for the younger generation. Each child worked in partnership with an adult Rocket Artist.
All participants were shown an animation of the project process and given information packs containing schedules and consent forms etc. in an appropriate form (e.g. communication symbols where appropriate.)
At the start of the project, each participant was given the opportunity to assemble a box of stimuli. Boxes could contain photos, drawings, ephemera, small objects, photocopies. The idea is that each box represents aspects of it’s maker; likes, dislikes, memories and stories. With permission, the boxes were taken by me at the end of the first session.
I swapped and delivered partners' boxes at the start of the next session. Each participant opened the box they had received from their partner and documented it’s contents through photography, drawing, writing, cyanotype printing etc.
With support from me, each participant was given the opportunity to make a piece of art in response to something/things they have found in the box from their partner.
Partners continued communicating visually through the exchange of handmade postcards.
In the final session, partners met and some chose to create something together using drawing, painting and collage.
Some of the art made during the project was shown at the Grace Eyre Foundation ‘Open House’ exhibition and was very well received, especially the badges and comics made by Peter Cutts which sold out. ‘Peter’s Comic Book’ has been reprinted twice, both by The Grace Eyre Foundation and The Pallant Gallery.