Guerrilla Art Project

Dawn Moorhouse works for the Governance team at Alternative Futures Group and is training to become an art therapist. Alongside AFG Clinical Director Mike Smith, she is spearheading the Guerrilla Arts Project.

The project is named after an arts movement in which artists ‘take over’ public spaces and install artwork in order to enhance people’s experiences of the environment. The concept for the AFG project is just that, to invite artists to create artwork in our treatment and recovery centres to enhance the environment for people who are living and recovering there. By injecting life, hope and feeling into the centres through the artwork, we believe that we can have a positive impact on the recovery of those we support there.

Dawn requested submissions from artists to support the project for the pilot centre, Lea Court in Warrington. An artist named David Lloyd who recently appeared on the Sky portrait of the year awards facilitated two workshops for staff and residents whilst a fellow artist, David Bravey donated a painting to the centre.

Dawn is currently working with Meadow Park, Ellesmere Port and there are a number of very exciting projects in various stages of completion. Dawn along with Louise and Jane from Meadow Park selected three artists from the submissions she received who are supporting the project fully and installing their artwork at the centres with the help of the residents and staff.

David Andrews was the first artist to install artwork at Meadow Park and with some help from the residents he painted leaves and butterflies down one corridor. Some of the leaves in the installation are painted in chalk paint allowing residents and staff to write and draw on them to interact with the piece.

The second artist, Lee Tidsall, created the “Hope” mural using the poem of the same name by Emily Dickinson as inspiration. Again in this piece some chalk paint was used allowing physical and emotional interaction with the piece for both residents and staff. Lee said “I feel really fortunate and proud to have worked on this project and I’m glad that the artwork has had such positive feedback. I hope it can help to make a difference and that people can feel a connection with the images and words”

The final artist who will install work at Meadow Park is Amy Goldup. Amy with the help of the residents will create paper butterflies which will be individually attached to the wall in the foyer and will be developed over time. Each butterfly will symbolise a person who has been supported to reach their potential by Alternative Futures Group. Residents will be invited to add to the piece every time they achieve a goal.

Dawn will be working with Millbrook, Manchester in the next stage of the project . If you are interested in supporting the project and becoming a Guerrilla artist, please contact Dawn.Moorhouse@AlternativeFuturesGroup.org.uk