A creative refuge in the heart of the city – All Saints Church
A hidden gem in the heart of the city. In the midst of urban development, and the heart of Leicester City Centre, sits a grade 1 listed medieval church which has recently transformed into a hive of cultural activity. Thanks to a new partnership between Leicester based contemporary arts development agency, ArtReach, and the Churches Conservation Trust, All Saints Church, which is located on Highcross Street, just behind Highcross shopping centre, is now to become centre stage for a wealth of arts projects and activities.
Van Gogh, The Immersive Experience
Thanks to cutting edge virtual projection you will become a part of the spectacular, incomparable universe of Vincent Van Gogh. The experience will let you discover the life of the artist in a new way: his time at the convent and in Arles, the secrets from the letters he wrote to his brother and much more. You will participate in a unique sound and light show that will immerse you in the world renowned and familiar images of Vincent Van Gogh. No one will leave untouched. Van Gogh: The Immersive Experience is a 360 degree experience in the universe of one of the greatest geniuses of the last century.
Maddie Smart, Executive Producer for ArtReach explained the plans. “Working in collaboration with the Y-Theatre, and thanks to Heritage Lottery funding, the first project in the church, Sanctuaries, worked with a group of young people to explore local historical sites of sanctuary. Then, with professional artists, they developed their findings into performances, installations and exhibitions all led and created by the young participants. We also had Heritage Lottery funding to further explore the history of the church and to create a sound installation reflecting that history as part of Journeys Festival International in August2019. ”.
Sanctuaries: Looking for Safe Spaces was funded by Y Heritage through the national Kick The Dust programme.
For this project ArtReach is worked alongside an amazing group of young people from Leicester Y and Attenborough Arts centre, matching them with some incredible creatives, towards producing a series of immersive installations in the church as part of Refugee Week 2019.
Throughout this project we sought out heritage venues in Leicester with a link to the history of Sanctuary. We learned about the concept of Sanctuary itself and shared ideas about what makes a place a sanctuary for us as individuals.
Then, in the final stage, we built the young people’s Real and Imagined Safe Spaces in the Church and shared their vision with the public. The exhibition was open Friday 21 and Saturday 22 June, 12pm till 7pm.
A first project based in the building, ArtReach was able to explore how we might transform the space, remaining respectful of its history as a place of worship at the centre of the community. A great project to start with!
Making Medieval Leicester Heritage Visible: A Research Project