Help the Ages - Elder Workshop.
As part of my 'Help the Ages' year, last Friday I ran a workshop for elders in Battersea. The workshop focused on love, passion and romance and asked the participants to share their stories with each other.

The group was split into three smaller groups, Each group focused on a different theme of love. Some were asked to share their memories of love, people they had fallen for and poems, songs or verses they remember, others were invited to recreate famous scenes from romantic films and create stills.

Some remembered Brief Encounters, others preferred anything with Elvis, Robert Redford was suave  but John Wayne was the clear winner - he stole the hearts of every woman in Battersea!

Other members of the group were invited to share stories of personal love. Toni (left) married a Polish man in the 50's. '..we were both so passionate, he would come home so late and I would be so angry, I'd smash things and he open his arms and sing 'Bye Bye Blackbird' to me, I would start to laugh, he knew how to make me smile'

The rest of the group began to sing 'Bye Bye Blackbird' - Toni said '..i never could remember those bloody words!'

Participants were then asked to create these stories into images with Simon and Dr J.

In another group the elders shared their thoughts on paper. Collecting stories of verses, poems, love songs or any thoughts of love they wanted to mark. Alot of people agreed that it was hard to remember any poems but songs were greatly recalled.

My favorite written quote is -
''Picked up a man at 15 - We danced at the Social Club. Got engaged at 21- a week after he was signed up to the army, away for three and a half years and only had 7 days leave in all that time! We were married for 43 years'

We also collected sound clips and group discussions, the work collected will be shown at 'Valentines Grand Ball' at the Grand Hall of BAC on 14th Feb. I will also be collecting stories of love from all ages at the event, drawing comparisons and matching older and younger people on the night to get them talking to each other, the idea is to use love as common ground - everybody love's something or someone and regardless of age we have similar experiences.

Thanks to the members of LARA.

Images by Dr J - AbsolutQueer Photography

Commissioned by BAC & Duckie.

1 comment:

Sing Clementine said...

This is so inspiring, it left a for-real tear in my eye.