City Arts

Artist: City Arts

At ICAF City Arts would like to share some of the on-going work they have developed around puppetry and how they have used this art form to create different opportunities for engagement, both in the design and creation of the puppets, and in how they are used and performed in public.


Much of the puppetry City Arts have developed has come out of their large-scale work with Carnival Arts. This project was created to bring older adults into the carnival family. While they may not be physically able to take part in a carnival on the parade route, City Arts wanted to find ways that older adults could take part in carnival. In partnership with the residents they designed three giant birds, decorating their feathers with stories from their lives. These were then learnt how to be operated by volunteers and young people who performed them on the day. Afterwards, City Arts went back to the care homes to create a carnival atmosphere and share photos and films of the day. The following year, City Arts worked to create individual floats built around a shop-mobility scooter, and were able to take four people with disabilities out with them to carnival.


Other City Arts puppetry work has included the creation of smaller scale puppets that have been used in walkabout events and interventions on the street. These puppets take five people each to operate and involve much teamwork and co-operation between the puppeteers. It is this practice that City Arts wants to introduce at ICAF. The City Arts team will introduce two puppets they created as part of a programme they were involved in in the lead up to the 2012 Olympics. Each puppet takes five people to operate it, so they will work as a group to explore how to animate them, and then go out into the streets for a walkabout to meet and interact with the public.


City Arts Nottingham develops arts opportunities that bring people together, stimulate change and create stronger, healthier communities. The company believe participation in the arts can enrich and transform people’s lives and have been pioneering this approach for nearly 40 years. A registered charity, City Arts work creatively and collaboratively with communities and particularly target resources towards vulnerable groups. Their projects include music, performance, visual and digital arts and are all facilitated by artists particularly skilled in working creatively with people.

Thursday 30 March 13.30