Today I had the great opportunity to go down to High Chelmer and have a look at the amazing artwork done by the students at MENCAP. There is a wonderful variety of art in multiple different mediums done by 50 students, all aged between 18 and 68 for you to enjoy. The exhibition has been put on in celebration of the Platinum City Jubilee and was supported by Arts Council England to allow the students the opportunity to be at the forefront of the community, as well as to remind us that they are much more than just their disability. Elaine Tribley, an active member of Ignite, worked closely with both of MENCAP’s Functional Skills and Active in the Environment students to showcase the cultural and industrial change that has occurred throughout Queen Elizabeth’s reign. The students chose to look at the topics of bicycles, holidays, and Crompton. They were keen to investigate how these elements have adapted over the years and got to observe and engage with the wildlife when looking at the change in land use. They even worked with Mr Penny Farthing (Edwin Knight) to create an extensive bicycle timeline which is displayed on the wall at the exhibition.
Activities like these are so important to the MENCAP students, as it allows them to learn about, and actively participate in, the process of creating something. All of the research, preparation, following through, and ultimately the final completion of the project and hosting it, are all key to showcasing them and their work. All of this combined, especially the extensive research that went into it, has meant they have been able to grow and develop their literacy, numeracy, and IT skills. Most importantly, the students love taking part. The sensory elements of being creative can be a very therapeutic experience for them, as they are using multiple different mediums throughout their work.
This exhibit is definitely one that I would recommend paying a visit to, as not only will you be able to see the fantastic artwork that is on display, but you will also be able to talk to some of the artists that have put great time and effort into creating the work. It is located at unit 13 on Exchange Way in High Chelmer and will be available to view Monday to Saturday from 9:30-4:30. Although it will only be around for two weeks, ending on 1st July, it will then go on to be available on the MENCAP website for everyone to see and to be able to look back on for years to come. So, if you are ever in town make sure to pay a visit to the exhibit and show your support by having a look at the wonderful artwork created by these hardworking artists.
About City of Chelmsford Mencap
City of Chelmsford Mencap is your local, independent charity for children and adults with a learning disability. We provide social clubs and respite schemes for people of all ages as well as information and support services for members and their families and carers.
We rely on grants and donations to fund our services and the commitment and enthusiasm of volunteers who socialise with and support our members.