'Another great week in the Wur Bradford market stall' by Jean McEwan


This is a reblog of Jean's latest post from her own Wur Bradford project page.

Jean is a founding member of our Socially Engaged and Participatory Arts Network.

Her current socially engaged work in Kirkgate Market, Bradford seeks to explore how we can make our city better through imagination and collective action.  The project is ongoing.  The results heart-warmingly intimate.

This is her post...


kids drawing
connies face drawing faces 1
It’s been half term so I had lots of young visitors this week. Conchetta, Jessica, Rhadha, Dantrell, Harvey and Mohammed were among the kids who came in to get creative and kept me and other visitors entertained. Connie Jess and Rhadha all have parents who run stalls in the market, and they took me over to introduce me to them.
dantrell's booklet
Dantrell was over visiting from Leeds, and he came into make some stuff while his mum was getting her hair done in one of the hairdressers in the market. He made this book and he also made some headphones from cardboard for a costume for his school assembly.
Ann Marie came by again this week with her husband Martin to bring some of her paintings and drawings to put up in the space, including these pieces
annmare collage
ann marie painting 1
Ann Marie explained the personal significance of the symbols in the above painting, and how they relate to her disability and health. She was kind enough to type this out for me later and send them to me so I could share them here and print them out to put in the space.  She says
“The symbols stand for : Highheel – feminism the love of heels I but cant wear them , the difficulty getting round. Stripes – Zebra logo for hypermobility syndromes and EDS (see link http://www.ehlers-danlos.org/about-eds-uk/why-the-zebra/) Purple sky – brain fog and fatigue, spoons- fatigue theory known as the spoon theory :http://www.butyoudontlooksick.com/category/the-spoon-theory/ and the footprints are about my feeling that i want people to understand to metaphorically walk with me rather than ahead and in a way walk with me instead of away as friends have in the past.”
The lovely market staff (thank you Kevin and Jimmy! ) are organising the making of a special ramp so Ann Marie can get proper access to the space in her wheelchair (there’s a 5 inch step) so next week she can come in and get more involved.
banner making
banner making 2
banner painting 3
Matthew came down on Tuesday to help make some banners for the Anti Austerity Rally which happened on Wednesday in Centenary Square – and he also stayed around to make this instant book about the Bradford Bulls
mathews book
A couple more people from a local Women’s Refuge stopped by to say hi and check out what’s going on – they are going to tell the service users about the space and see if any of them wants to come down. Hope so!
bens collaged book stuartcollageand ben
Ben had found out about the stall via Twitter and popped in a couple of time this week. He wrote some contributions to the affirmations area and also made a collaged instant book. He told me and Stuart, who was visiting at the same time, about some of the music he likes, and we chatted about allsorts.
margaret and tatin flower
Margaret was born and brought up in Bradford, but moved to Lancashire some years ago. She was back for a visit for the day and was having a look round the market. She came in to chat and tell us some stories about Bradford as it used to be, and made me this lovely ‘tatting’ flower from wool she had in her bag. Thank you Margaret!
tatin flower with bradford map 1
One of my favourite moments from this week was when Kyra, a young visitor who popped in with her two sisters Nieve and Kya, did this impromptu paper plate portrait of Ivan, who had popped in to visit. He is rightly chuffed to bits with it.
Portrait of Ivan by Kyra
Portrait of Ivan by Kyra
Food donations box for Bradford Metropolitan foodbank. They need all the help they can get, so please bring a donation if you can
Food donations box for Bradford Metropolitan foodbank. They need all the help they can get, so please bring a donation if you can
David popped in again on Thursday before he started work. We got talking about the Foodbank donations box and how a lot of people were struggling to get by on low wages and benefits. He told me about the Bradford Credit Union and how he’s found it really good being a member, helping to pay bills and save on a budget. He’s going to bring some leaflets in if he can next week
What a great week it has been – thank you to everyone who has come down to make stuff and come in to talk. Looking forward to the next one!
back wall with artwork