Project in a Box

Well, the Peripheral Vision project has ended. What a roller coaster of ups and downs, of twists and turns, of joyous laughter and screams of frustration it has been. It was, without doubt a super duper success with regard to participation and the gorgeous work the learners produced. In total we ran 22 courses that attracted 242 learners (we were aiming for 100!) with 57 visits to cultural venues.

Projects, such as this one, really do change lives. The funding we received from the Skills Funding Agency has enabled WEA to offer bespoke creative course that incorporated visits to the best cultural venues in the North West (and two in Yorkshire). It also meant we could employ artists to run workshops in the venues. This was of huge benefit to both the project participants, and WEA’s team of tutors who had the opportunity to take a back seat and see how other creatives taught their subjects. Project participants made chutney at Lyme Park; met woolly endangered species at Yorkshire Sculpture Park; studied all things political at People’s History Museum; helped change the shape of their landscape by studying public art at Whitworth Art Gallery; and interpreted being ‘on the periphery’ through creative textiles and words. You can view a brief summary of all the courses here.

The participants from the Booth Centre made some great films which you can view below.


Here are two short documentary films of some of the learners on their courses:


Here’s a ten minute video of the celebratory event at the Cornerhouse. You can’t imagine how much I was longing to sit in the big red chair!


Below you will find various products related to Peripheral Vision that might help, and inspire, you to run a similar project:

  • Here’s a PDF of the project blurb I designed way back in August 2011, to email/post/hand to prospective project stakeholders. The aims on the PDF were the original bid ones which changed slightly as the project evolved. For example, filming, editing and producing 60 one minute films proved too prescriptive and was abandoned in favour of short films between one and three minutes’ long. 

    PV-PDF (2.4 MiB)

  • Producing a book was prohibitively expensive especially when publishing multiple copies to give to learners for their family and friends. However, designing and publishing a tabloid sized magazine was far more cost-effective and enabled us to run off 1,000 copies. The magazine was designed by Richard Weltman and edited by me. All art work © The Artists.
  • At the wonderful celebratory event held at the Cornerhouse on 2 April, I gave a short summary of the project which you can view here as a Power Point Presentation. 

    PVpresentationCornerhouse (5.1 MiB)

  • There was a lot of love in the room at the event, especially when it came to the Prize Giving section. I had asked the tutor and learners on each course to nominate one person to receive a book as a prize. This proved difficult for two tutors who insisted on nominating two learners apiece. Hold your hands up Jamie Moloney and Dani Gaines! Here is a list of all the prize winners, the courses they were on, the books they won and the nomination reasons. Congratulations to Ken Ward who was nominated by his tutor on both of the courses he attended. What a star! 

    PV-Prize-Nominations (57.3 KiB)

  • Here’s a promotional poster I produced to advertise the Shape Your Landscape course for City South Manchester Housing Trust. The beautiful red seat was designed and installed by BCA Landscape. This course incorporated a real-life practical aplication of the knowledge learnt on the course. City South Manchester Housing Association have employed BCA Landscape to design the outdoor spaces of eleven of the Trust’s neighbourhoods, having committed £3,000,000 to the project. In conjunction with both organisations and Whitworth Art Gallery, the learners studied outdoor sculpture and street art and visited Yorkshire Sculpture Park for inspiration. They were then better informed to give their opinions on the sort of outdoor art they would like BCA Landscape  to commission for their neighbourhoods.

    Art-or-Carbunkle (1014.1 KiB)

  • Here’s a poster for the Wild Things course featuring a woolly creature by the textile artist Donna Wilson

    Wild-Things-Poster (188.8 KiB)

  • Here’s the flyer I sent via email to invite stakeholders to the information event at the Cornerhouse on 16 September. 

    PV-Partner-invitation (184.6 KiB)

  • Here’s a poster designed by Rubbish Revamped for the Creature Comforts course for residents of Adactus Housing Association held at Whitworth Art Gallery. 

    Creature Comforts Poster (721.1 KiB)

  • The Apprentice course gave learners the amazing opportunity to curate and develop a new iPad ‘App’ which will increase accessibility to the collections at Manchester’s Whitworth Art Gallery for adults with dementia. The learners formed a small collaborative team working with Ed Watts, Adult Programme Coordinator at the gallery and local web developers. They are curating the work to be used in the App and guiding its development. The App is due to be released soon – watch this space! 

    The-Apprentice-Poster (635.3 KiB)

  • Here’s a list of the cultural venues visited, including the number of visits at each one. 

    Cultural-Venues-Visits (43.3 KiB)

  • Here’s an example course content document 

    In Stitches, Course Content 2011/2012 (164.5 KiB)

  • If you’d like some top tips on running a similar project click below. 

    Hints And Tips For Other Organizations Wishing To Deliver A Similar Project (35.5 KiB)

Please get in touch if you’d like to know more about the project:

Elaine Hutchings, Project Manager

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0161 277 5409