Opening the Photo Album: Mindfulness, Memories, Hope

By Greg McGee

Opening the Photo Album: Mindfulness, Memories, Hope

York’s elderly residents report little knowledge of how to bridge cultural divides between them and younger generations. Via creative intergenerational workshops, with themes set by participants, we created illuminated art based on old photo albums and conversations of memory and hope.
Funded by Arts Council England's Grantium programme, we successfully engaged with elderly patrons of 5 community centres around York, namely Sanderson House, Foxwood Community, Bar Convent cafe group, Acomb cafe group, Dalton Terrace cafe community. Take up was better than expected, and encouraged a sustained engagement from 37 young people, far exceeding our projections. The conversations were lively and led to collaborative creativity and artwork. Anecdotal feedback includes "I gave me a good excuse to get out of bed and have a netter with young people," "It's nice to talk to young folk as I spend so much time whingeing about them,"I loved looking at my old photos and my mates' old photos and then editing them."