An interactive performance installation that presents an exciting, novel concept of engaging (new) audiences with poetry through visual art and performance. It works like a music jukebox (only with poetry!) and consists of a ‘library’ of jars, containing miniature artworks, each expressing a feeling or idea connected to a poem. Audiences are invited to look at the jars, choose one they feel particularly drawn to and listen to a live performance of the poem. They then receive a postcard with a picture of their chosen jar and information about the poem. The postcard also provides them with a password ‘to unlock’ the other jars on the project website.
The poems are about human experience, about the things we all live through – expressed in the writer’s words and the artist’s and performer’s interpretation of these words. They include poems from the late 19th century to the present day, with a stronger focus on the 20th and 21st century, and include writers of different genders and cultural and ethnic backgrounds (such as Jackie Kay, Benjamin Zephaniah, Imtiaz Dharker and Claude McKay) as well as poems for children.
Audiences engage with the installation one-to-one or in small groups of two to four – the whole experience takes about five minutes.
The installation offers moments of beauty, calm, contemplation, respite, reflection and reassurance.