In March Down Community Arts celebrated providing a diverse all-incusive arts programme for the past 25 years.
Formed in 1992 and established in 1993, Down Community Arts enables the local community to experience innovative arts workshops, from visual arts, dance, digital animation to poetry and radio plays.
There is no age limit to community arts and DCA provides opportunities for youth groups and community organisations accross a whole spectrum of ages and abilities.
DCA treasurer Brenda Kent stated,
“People, young and old, feel more confident and more valued when they explore their world with us. They learn, they express their views and they are heard. Art has that power to connect and that is what Down Community Arts does. As an organisation we are grateful for, and appreciative of, the support from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland who have stayed with us from the beginning, funding us to change peoples lives through art”.
To help mark this special anniversary the team at DCA hosted an exhibition at Down Arts Centre to showcase the plethora of community groups DCA works with. The exhibition entitled ‘Connections’ best represented what DCA has achieved in bringing together people, communities, and artists to form connections, build common understanding and provide opportunities to engage in the arts regardless of ability.
The exhibition featured a selection of paintings, sculptures, ceramic pieces and short films, highlighting the achievments of local people through various community-led groups. One group in particular, Ballymote older men’s group, created a series of sculptures and written pieces facilitated by artists John Rainey and Olive Broderick. The projects aim was to enable the participants to socialise, converse, and partake in arts led activity looking at how the areas in which they used to work have evolved through the years.