Arts project aims to get people talking about city regeneration
THOUGHT-PROVOKING phrases are being plastered on the sides of public buildings and buses in an attempt by local artists to get the city's population talking.
Walking past the Potteries Museum and Art Gallery people are being encouraged to ponder on the idea that "eighty per cent of impossible is possible", and walkers passing the City Library can read in huge letters on the outside wall "talent hits a target no-one else can hit, genius hits a target no-one else can see".
The signs are the work of local artist Chris Twigg who is the first of six commissioned local artists to produce exhibitions as part of the Feel The Feeling project, which is part of the Place, Space and Identity 2 programme masterminded by Newcastle-based B arts group.
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Listen to an interview about the art project
Other "public realm" art works to be opened in the next six weeks include a "living room" made up of memories of a house about to be knocked down, heat sensitive phrases printed on bus tickets and dance performances in the community.
Mr Twigg, who grew up in Stoke-on-Trent and is now a senior lecturer in graphic design at Lincoln University, asked hundreds of residents questions including:
What does home mean to you?
What do you worry about?
When were you last happy or sad?
Mr Twigg said: "I spent months talking to people about the area and their feelings about it.
"I wanted to use the cityscape to put these quotes up and involve people in talking about life in the city.
"I hope it will achieve a sense of collective identity and kick start some discussion."
Susan Clarke, of B arts, said: "We're putting art in public spaces this year to try to break down barriers.
"Chris's art is going down really well and he has got a great response on his website, it's really getting people talking."
Hazel Lyth, Stoke-on-Trent City Council's portfolio holder for enterprise and culture, said: "Through Renew's programme, North Staffordshire is undergoing an immense period of change. We need to find as many ways as possible to engage with people around the regeneration projects planned for their neighbourhoods.
"Place, Space and Identity offers us a unique opportunity to reach local people and get their views on the changes that are having a profound impact on their lives. The project gives people a platform to respond to the changes and by getting involved, residents can feel they are part of the regeneration process."