Manchester. Saturday 4th August 2018. A regular Saturday afternoon in the City Centre. Shoppers going about their business with the usual hustle and bustle. But something is a bit different. From the corner of your eye you catch sight of something. Did you imagine it? And then there’s another… and another. Suddenly a host of shadowy figures is moving silently through the streets, playing, questioning, exploring…
In 2015, Greater Manchester Police recorded the UK’s 2nd highest rate of hate crime — with the number of disability motivated crimes more than doubling since 2014. In a creative response to this disturbing statistic, one Manchester artist is launching a new kind of superhero, Shadow Girl, onto our streets.
Shadow Girl — the city streets – a roaming performance, designed to be encountered by chance – is about a girl that has become afraid of people and become a shadow of herself as result of the things people say about her – hurtful words that chip away a little bit of her light making her fearful about being visible or going outside.
Shadow Girl — the city streets is about making people living with disability labels more visible on our streets…
This new show is the work of Chrissy Jones, a Manchester-based artist living with a Learning Disability Label. Shadow Girl is her first solo work, originally developed as part of Proud & Loud Arts’ group work Cells – A Body of Work, here expanded and developed on a larger scale.
The project features Concept Design by Nerissa Cargill Thompson, Graphic Design by John Ossoway and illustrations by Manchester-based artist Lizzie Finlay – perhaps best known for her children’s book illustration work – has provided graphics to help promote the project.
Chrissy is a Manchester-based artist living with a Learning Disability Label. She is a long standing artist with Proud & Loud Arts and has recently been working with The Lowry, DIY, and Access all Areas in MADHOUSE re:exit performed in Manchester’s Barton Arcade.
Shadow Girl is her first solo work, originally developed as part of Proud & Loud Arts’ group work Cells – A Body of Work, here expanded and developed on a larger scale for Hazard 2018. In Shadow Girl, Chrissy wants to bring a positive discussion about learning disability to a wider public audience through a creative intervention in public spaces.
“It’s about a girl who is upset and anxious about being bullied,” says Chrissie, “so she hides in the shadows where no one can see her. There she makes some new shadow friends and for the first time she feels like she belongs, until one day she is strong enough to become Shadow Girl… protecting people from the bullies so they don’t have to hide in the shadows like she did.”
Shadow Girl — the city streets was commissioned by hÅb for Hazard 2018 and takes place on the afternoon of Saturday 4th August between St Ann’s Square and Exchange Square. It’s been directed by Tom Hogan (with Movement by Susan Swanson) and is produced by Proud & Loud Arts, a user-led performing arts charity for people living with a disability in Salford and Manchester and promoted by Word of Warning, Manchester’s roving programme of new performance. The project is supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England.
Established in 2000, the main aim of the work of Proud & Loud Arts is to create performances which express the views of people with disabilities and to raise awareness of disability. They achieve this by creating innovative and thought provoking performance from the perspectives of artists living with disability labels. The response to their work from the public, press and industry professionals has been resoundingly positive.
hÅb is a production and development organisation based in Manchester, UK, founded in 1996. Specialising in contemporary performance, live art and sited intervention, it often works with regional, emergent artists. It was a long-term partner of greenroom, producing a range of schemes and events including Emergency, Turn, Hazard.
• Shadow Girl — the city streets Saturday 4th August 2018, 12 noon – 4.00pm approximately, roaming from St Ann’s Square to New Cathedral St to Exchange Square, Manchester (aimed for you to encounter by chance, it’s free/ unticketed) Telephone: call or text 07488 308 111 on the day | For more info: hazardmcr.org
Access Information:Age advisory: suitable for ALL ages. Hazard 2018: Shadow Girl — the city streets takes place outside. For specific age + access information please email firstname.lastname@example.org, or call 0161 232 6086 before the event / 07488 308 111 on the day of the event.