Following the artist residency at Exeter’s women’ refuge in 2013/14, Art House was a 10 week art project with women affected by domestic abuse to explore what refuge is, and took place from May-July 2015. I was joined by artist Nicci Wonnacott and filmmaker Josh Gaunt to deliver this project.
This project forms part of a project The Refuge Manifesto which is funded by Arts Council England Grants for the Arts, Elmgrant Trust, Exeter City Council Arts Project funding, SEEDS (Survivors Empowering and Educating Domestic Abuse Services), and Fawcett Devon
Here is what some of the women who came to the Art House sessions said:
Art House is a haven through creativity.
It is a sharing.
Art House is non-judgement, open and compassionate.
It gives us friendship.
Art House gives me time to myself.
It helps my well being. It is a reminder of things I had previously enjoyed.
Art House is a gift.
It has re-awakened my creativity, realising art doesn’t need to be ‘perfect’
Art House is safe.
Here we are free from criticism.
Art House has no ‘scratchiness’.
We are a comfortable group of women.
Art House has evoked a positive new meaning to Thursday mornings <which used to have a negative connotation>