Imogen Higgins is a lead artist for ‘Breaking the Mould’; a long term project working closely with the charity ‘ACE (Action in Caerau and Ely) to provide an inclusive, creative environment for members of the community to explore art. The group is mainly focused on health and wellbeing but also offers opportunities for participants to gain qualifications, exhibit, and sell their work to the public.
Throughout this two year project, one of the main focuses for the group has been to develop an art inspired garden space. For this garden area the group created garden furniture out of recycled materials; driftwood and seashell mirrors, chairs and tables made of old car tyres with mosaic table tops. They also made willow bird feeders and giant sunflowers using traditional basketry techniques, as well as a living willow arch that would guide visitors into the garden.
Coming from a ceramics background Imogen was also able to deliver pottery workshops where the group were shown many different hand building methods including slab building and coiling using an unusual spiral method in which the outside of the vessel becomes an explosion of pattern.
Another artistic medium that Imogen shared with the group was print making. For this project the group were given the choice to experiment with Japanese woodcut printing and lino printing. Each member of the group would come up with a completely unique design in which they would carve into the wood or lino. During this project a trip to print house, a Professional print studio was arranged.
The trip to Print House was just one of many trips organised for the group. Breaking the Mould visited Coed hills rural art space to harvest willow for our living willow arch, Glazed their pottery in a real potters studio, and took a trip to Southerndown Beach. Whilst at the beach they lit up the willow and tissue paper lanterns they had made, created impressions in clay of different fossils they found on the beach and made a bonfire where they cooked their food for the evening.
Breaking the mould also hosted an exhibition of their work to the public called Our Dusty Garden Party where the art enthused garden was officially opened to the public and an exhibition of their prints and ceramic work were shown inside. This proved to be a big success as over sixty people were in attendance.