LEARNING disabled adults have had their creative talents recognised after selling all their pottery items at the Open Art and Ceramics exhibition held on 10 and 11 June at All Saints Church, Little Canfield in Essex.
Not only did the sales generate a £350 profit for the day service, run by learning disability charity Hft, but there was also lots of interest from the local community and the public in general about the charity and the people it supports.
Irena Adomaitiene, Day Services Manager for Hft in Hertfordshire and Essex said:
“It was a fantastic weekend. The people we support at the service helped to set up the exhibition and staff, volunteers and supported people all pulled together to put on a fantastic display.”
Mina, who attends the pottery sessions, was one of those who helped to set up the stall prior to the exhibition. She said:
“I loved creating our display board, arranging all the photos and meeting and chatting with all the other artists there.”
One item on display – The Beehive – received particular interest and attracted attention from local beekeepers who wished to purchase it.
The Beehive was made collectively by all the supported people who attend the pottery sessions. The idea behind it came from the artists themselves and was inspired by the garden centre environment where the day service is located.
“It all started as a drawing which slowly took shape and formed into a massive beehive.
“Linda Morris, our external tutor, and some of the volunteers ended up with the big challenge of how to make the drawing into reality. Staff sourced a terracotta garden pot to use as the base and then slowly, piece by piece, the beehive started to take shape. It took a good few months to finish this masterpiece!”
Another of those supported by Hft is Lorna whose family came to the exhibition to view the pottery. Lorna chatted to the exhibition goers, talking about the ducks she had made and how lovely they looked in her garden. The pottery penguin she made was voted ‘Best in Show’, beating off all the professional potters.
“Since the exhibition, there has been increased interest in what Hft as a charity does and how creative the people we support are.”