"A Thousand Sheep" Art project focussed on developing new values, and knowledge related to local natural resources including human, economic and historical resources. People of all ages and abilities slowly engaged in the project at many different levels and developed an understanding of a contemporary art piece from its origin on the land to the Art Gallery setting. Learning and passing on traditional skills for a modern purpose was at the centre of all activities.
The project was set as a practice based research in a non-art environment and out of university context; the aim was to reconnect people with the land and gain a sense of responsibility towards local resources and sustainability. It was an open invitation to the public to get involved in making a large piece of contemporary art. The process was to provide the trigger for conversations and reflection on natural resources, the environment and the management of the land as well as question the motivations behind military engagement across the world.
The artist and the surrounding community grew and changed through discussions and first-hand experience of natural raw materials. The project was offering to explore the way we currently respond to our basic needs for food and safety through farming and the military, and the inherent compromises and sacrifices that we make.
"A Thousand Sheep" art project has created much interest and involvement in the community; to date it attracted
- Over 15000 visitors of which 1800 school children
- 700 school children involved in the making, 85% of which were from army's families
- 150 adult and youth volunteers of which 50 art students
- Over 80 local, national and international artists were involved in discussions and making of the pieces.
- 20 recovering soldiers
- 8 local organisations
- 6 work experience
- 5 farmers
- 4 local businesses
- 1 film maker