Friday, 28 May 2010

Quick Shout Out..... the good people at Belfast Children's Festival. The festival, in it's 13th year, comes to a close this weekend and despite a wicked head cold,  I managed to make it down to one event today and am hoping to make it down to the World Famous Baby Rave on Sunday.

Today we took the Bethster and Shugmeister along to Cardboard Cities, an inspired art project in the city centre, where architects and children have worked together to create an ever evolving city made from bits of old cardboard and scrap paper. The level of creativity on display was amazing, and as all parents know, there's nothing like a cardboard box to entertain a child. In the end we near enough had to drag the Bethster away.

Children are encouraged not just to play, but also create their own sections and additions, meaning that the city is forever growing and changing. As a means of demonstrating the value of children's art it is fantastic, and even as an adult it certainly gets you thinking about innovation and your own concepts of space.  Insightful and impressive (the pictures here demonstrate that perfectly) the project also re-enforces the notion of re-usability, as nothing is rubbish where children are involved.

The very helpful volunteer was also kind enough to talk me through the project and gave credit for most of the available resources coming from Play Resource. One of the largest of it's kind in the UK, Play Resource is a centre for art, play and education, that collects waste materials from industry, to offer up to people working with children, young people and community groups, either for free or low cost. They also provide advice, ideas and training in this area.

A free exhibit, I would advise anyone in Belfast City Centre (Castle Lane) this weekend to check it out (open til Sunday), and for those out of area, why not check out the following links for inspiration and ideas.

Cardboard Cities
Play Resource
Belfast Children's Festival Home Page

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