Do we really need art?
STORIES FROM THE ROAD: Ballymac Community, East Belfast, Northern Ireland.
It’s been a few weeks since returning from East Belfast and the completion of our mural project. I’m still excited by this work and the people it touched along the way. I believe art has the ability to connect us on a creative and spiritual level and in the process has the potential to transform us.
We began the project with the folks at East Belfast Mission. They worked with the East Belfast Partnership to secure a site for the mural, through Translink in Belfast. Those connections brought us in contact with the Ballymac Community, the site of the mural, who’s community members participated in painting the mural. That took place on the east side of the pond. Before the actual painting could take place, our studio began the design process back here in Kansas City. We mentored and guided four design students from the University of Kansas: Amanda, Jared, Lauren and Samantha. They invested five months working in our studio on the design and presentation of mural ideas, followed by two weeks the two week adventure in East Belfast. Daughter Heidi helped us both with the painting and with capturing the story in photography.
I’m proud of our group of designers and feel privileged to have had the opportunity to work with the folks in the Ballymac. We will be sharing more of our story in the weeks ahead. We hope to illustrate with word and image how works of the heart help to create and to transform communities.