This February half term, Harrie Dearing will open a breath-taking, immersive art exhibition at the historic Health Hydro in Swindon, as part of the Festival of Tomorrow.
Arts Council England recently awarded Harrie funding to develop her creative practice.
With this funding Harrie's aim is to develop her practice by integrating her artwork with projection mapping technology to create immersive art installations that empower her as a disabled artist.
Harrie has a disability called FND which causes her to have daily seizures and mobility problems. She uses art as a personal therapy. ‘Art is the way in which I digest the world, by sharing it I hope for others to find light in the dark’. FND greatly restricts Harrie’s independence in day to day life and her ability to share her art. ‘By using projection mapping technology, I can take 100’s of my paintings anywhere I go and present them through a projector and laptop. It is giving me a sense of independence as a creative again, as it works around the limitations of my disability’’
Harrie’s background in theatre has driven her to heighten this by applying immersive and experiential theatre elements to the exhibition. ‘ I adore combining my skills as a visual artist with my passion for theatre making, and hope to encourage others to combine multiple disciplines in their art. It's the key to artistic innovation’
Harrie will share her first projection mapping installation during the February half term. ‘Stories Written in Stardust’ which features her 'Cosmicscape' collection of artworks.
Experimenting with high resolution photographs of her original artwork, Harrie has animated the still images and will be projecting them into the empty swimming pool, at the Health Hydro. She has been mentored by theatre maker and animator, Edalia Day. The visual art is accompanied by an original score composed by Gary Bamford, which is played to the audience through individual wireless headsets.
This event is hosted in the, soon to be restored, empty swimming pool on Milton Road. Harrie is keen to work with unique locations and heritage sites.'' This technology allows me to breathe new life into my artwork. There is an inexplicably beautiful quality to mirroring this. Using my art to breathe new life into historic sites and unique spaces.'' ‘This site is where i learned to swim as a child, it has been very nostalgic and somewhat surreal to create in the space’’
The organisers at the Festival of Tomorrow have supported Harrie in accessing the venue, and are excited to have her event as part of the festival programme. ''Connecting with the team at the Festival of Tomorrow inspired me to explore how theoretical physics connects to my Cosmicscape collection. I have written a series of poetry blending theoretical physics with whimsical metaphors to accompany the exhibition. These poems will be presented as a voice over at key moments in the animation. ''
Dr Rod Hebden, Festival of Tomorrow Director said:
“We’re firm believers in the creativity of science and the ability of art to explore scientific ideas in new ways. Harrie’s exhibition looks incredible, and we can’t wait to see her breathe a moment of wonder into the beautiful Health Hydro before it closes for restoration work.”
Stories written in Stardust is a free event. Bookings must be made via Eventbrite due to the limited capacity. Donations are welcome. Contributing to future sharing of the work. Harrie is also donating 50% of the proceeds to IPSUM. A local charity that offers a range of therapeutic interventions including talking therapies, Music and Art
Music by Gary Bamford
Voice over by Monica Matosevic
Photography by John and Michelle Whitmore
Projection and animation mentor, Edalia Day