Museums help out with ‘Kids Kollection’

Launching the Kids Konnection cross community summer scheme are, from left, Adrian Kerr, Museum of Free Derry, Billy Moore and Billy Stewart, Apprentice Boys, and Mhairi Sutherland, Verbal Arts Centre community engagement co-ordinator. (1207PG42)
Launching the Kids Konnection cross community summer scheme are, from left, Adrian Kerr, Museum of Free Derry, Billy Moore and Billy Stewart, Apprentice Boys, and Mhairi Sutherland, Verbal Arts Centre community engagement co-ordinator. (1207PG42)

The Apprentice Boys of Derry Museum and the Museum of Free Derry in the Bogside are both involved in a new scheme for children in the city which starts on Monday.

The summer scheme with a difference is called ‘Kids Kollection’ and will involve children from both main traditions in Derry.

They’ll be working with professional artists and facilitators in an effort to “rewrite the map of Derry-Londonderry”. It means they’ll be looking at symbols and cultural artefacts from the traditions and creating their own exhibition at the Verbal Arts Centre.

Mhairi Sutherland, Community Engagement Co-ordinator at the Verbal Arts Centre, said it’s a great opportunity for the children, and it’s also special to have the involvement of both museums.

“I suppose there’s a certain resonance to that in terms of the positive publicity the city’s been getting in terms of parading this summer.

“Visitors to the city are already getting the chance to explore its history from different perspectives, on the guided tours and also through visiting the excellent local museums.

“But it’s often the case that local people who go along with visitors also find out a lot of information they weren’t aware of. So it’s great that local children are being given that type of opportunity through this scheme. They’ll tap into the history and traditions here.”

Running from Monday next until Thursday August 1st, Kids Kollection will see children creatively explore the collections of the two local community museums – the Museum of Free Derry and the Apprentice Boys of Derry Museum. Through examining the historical artefacts and stories found in these museums, they’ll create a new, contemporary ‘collection’ through the art forms of large scale drawing, creative writing, digital photography and even graffiti.

Mhairi said; “The Kids Kollections summer project is a fantastic opportunity for young people in the city to explore aspects of their own, and different cultures, through visual storytelling led by professional artists.

“The Verbal Arts Centre is delighted to be in a position to offer this project free of charge to participants, as a result of the support of a ‘Culture for All’ grant.

“The ‘Kids Kollections’ is an exciting programme of photography and large scale mural drawings, and will be showcased in an exhibition at the Verbal Arts at the culmination of the project.”

To book a place for your child please contact Mhairi Sutherland at the Verbal Arts Centre on 02871266946 or email mhairi.sutherland@verbalartscentre.co.uk