Carnivals and Parades
All the fun of the fair! Carnivals and parades are a blast of colour and excitement. Bringing together people of all ages to enjoy and revel in what's on offer. From Flamboyant floats for Manchester Mardi gras and Newcastle New Years Eve 'Glow Mobiles' celebration to a candle lit vigil with a delicate lantern parade, or Liverpool and Manchester's colourful community carnivals.
Working with schools, colleges or community groups to create an array of colourful costumes, building winged creatures or illuminated headdresses. Fiona instigates ideas, organises events, leads and delivers creative workshops, encouraging involvement, interaction and performance.
By utilising recycled materials or specialised art and craft products she produces themed commissions, setting scenes with carefully crafted props, transforming floats or building magical moving puppets. Click to view gallery
Lanterns and Illuminations
Working solo or in collaboration with other artists to design and make large scale feature lanterns for site specific events, performances or parades. Willow lantern making has become key within community arts. It is a fantastic way of engaging people, encouraging learning and creativity. Children love to make their own lanterns, listening carefully to instructions, following rules and then developing their designs in willow. The organic willow is a wonderful material to work with and it is possible to make fantastic features for any occasion.
With over 13 years of lantern making experience, working with wonderful volunteer groups, talented artists, and people of all ages and abilities we have made many varied and exciting celebratory feature lanterns. From giant fast food and fabulous fruits, to clocks, cakes, a Romany vardo, horses, Vikings and dinosaurs, to the most elegant pair of beautiful floating swans. Almost anything can be achieved.
Fiona devises, designs and develops spectacular lantern shows and parades of all sizes. Illuminated art works whether installed in woods, within urban settings, on parade in the community or floating on water have a magical presence when experienced after dark. Many of our lantern shows and illuminated projects are held in the autumn and winter seasons for maximum impact. Click to view gallery
Installations and Celebrations
Whether creating an exhibition in a gallery, decorating a street or venue for a celebratory gathering or displaying props for a performance, by installing artwork for an audience to enjoy and experience, the aim is to create wonderful and challenging, atmospheric scenes.
Fiona has been commissioned by New East Manchester working with a group of keen young gardeners to create a 'Greenhouse' bursting with fun oversized fruit and veg and to perform at the family fun day, showing off their prize winning produce. Collaborating to create tropical rainforests in Salford Parks,
working with primary schools to make insects, amphibians and strange smelling plants. Completely transforming woodland into a Witches Wicked Garden with moving, wailing ghosts and an eerie graveyard.
Fiona worked with Jo Foley to captivate the audience with their spooky Halloween scenes for Witches Walk. By including sounds, smoke and lighting to dramatically enhance the scene. Installations can be joint commissions with other artists, musicians and performers, as well as educational, creative community projects. By utilising the surrounding area and natural habitat of the installation site, much can be achieved.
TATE gallery Liverpool Find Your Talent exhibition was a vivid explosion of fun and colour with the installation of young artists work for the 'All about Me' project. Children enjoyed viewing their art work at eye level. Click to view gallery
Schools, Education and Training
Delivering high quality educational art projects within schools, colleges, museums, galleries and further educational settings.
Working with all ages and abilities from Early Years to special education needs, youth inclusion projects and adult health & community inclusion groups or specifically designed educational art programmes.
Fiona joined 'Artists In Schools' in 2004 and continues to organise and deliver many and varied schools and training productions as part of the team.
Working on transitional and amalgamation projects for schools preparing and planning change through art and team work.
Fiona successfully initiated and ran the Stockport Art Gallery Saturday Morning Art Club in 1996, a weekly art club creating a fabulous, varied, array of art and craft activities until 2009, often utilising the skills of new artists who would volunteer to help with the club to gain experience.
TATE Liverpool and Find Your Talent commissioned Fiona to devise and deliver the 'All about Me' project in 2009, 2010 and 2011. A teachers programme and educational pack has been designed based on her projects.
Fiona also provides art training for teachers and after school providers teaching specific skills, adaptable ideas and creative recycling as well as creative installation, design and production.Commissions include projects for Manchester City Art Gallery, Creative Partnerships Salford and Manchester, Whitworth Art Gallery Manchester, Harris Gallery Preston, Salford Museum and Art Gallery, Bolton Museum, Bolton Octagon Theatre, Lowry Theatre, TATE Liverpool
As well as many, many Schools throughout the North West, Merseyside, Yorkshire and Lancashire. Click to view gallery
Public Art and Painting
From urban streets and city centres to country parks or playgrounds, public art can enhance, transform and compliment a public space.
Fi Smith and Jo Foley were commissioned to create the A6 Corridor Artwork and devise an environmental education programme for Stockport environmental services in 2004. We produced 24 beautiful, bold, painted boards from children's designs to be installed on derelict shop fronts along Wellington Road and in Stockport centre. We have since been commissioned to create art boards and murals throughout the Northwest, including the Groundwork project 'PRIDE in our Neighbourhood', a project working with 7 groups to create 14 art boards installed throughout Old Trafford, with an open day event at Manchester United Football Ground for all involved.
Shaped art boards have been commissioned for parks, youth centres, and schools, as well as interactive boards for, and created with disabled children and adults.
Fiona has devised and created many public art boards projects for Artists In Schools, parks and recreation projects, youth clubs, Christmas markets and community allotments. Other public art designs include school sculptures and metal benches for parks and green areas. Click to view gallery
Community Projects and Events
Community arts is about working with, and for people, in the community. It is for everyone to enjoy, experience and get involved. Art can cross boundaries, link communities and join people of all ages, abilities and nationalities, encouraging unity, pride and achievement.
Working together to accomplish lantern parades, carnival and family fun days, to puppet shows, street art, exhibition and theatre, to dynamic shows and magnificent ceremonies.
Developing skills, awakening hidden talents, trying out new ideas and working with talented artists, designers and makers, from an initial hope or dream, through a journey of development and process to a final piece, finished production or slick show.
Continuing to hold a strong relationship with the community of Ordsall, Salford and Ordsall Community Arts, joining in the fun since 1998
Fiona chooses community arts because of the enjoyment of working closely with people and communities, sharing skills and opportunities and celebrating art. Click to view gallery
Awareness of environmental and ecological issues needs to be at the forefront of peoples minds in the 21st century. By raising awareness of these issues through art, we can teach and learn in fun and exciting ways.
By working with school and College groups to discuss climate change, re-cycling and sustainability, to then create fabulous informative banners from recycled fabric and scrap materials for display. Using slogans, logos and text to promote thought and educate. Building sculptures from junk, and installations from plastics we can consider the materials we use and how we use them.
By being aware of our carbon foot print we can help others to be aware.
Fiona has been commissioned by Stockport and Salford Environmental Services to deliver educational, environmental projects producing murals and painted boards for public display, parks, community gardens and schools well as working on climate action projects for Manchester and Salford.
Fiona is keen to continue promoting awareness through art with projects covering endangered species, the natural world, tropical rainforests, our area and the world we live in. Click to view gallery
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