County Durham residents who took part in a photography project to show what life was like in lockdown will see the results of their work for the first time.
In January, Durham County Council showed an exhibition which told the story of the county’s most vulnerable residents during the coronavirus pandemic.
The exhibition, Home Time, showed life under lockdown through the eyes of those who had to shield, care home residents, and isolated members of the community.
Produced by Wideyed, a not-for-profit photography collective based in the region, 27 people were recruited from across the county to share their stories, with each participant receiving photography mentoring to tell their story of lockdown.
Home Time appeared at Gala Gallery between January and March this year, however some of the project’s participants were unable to see their work in person due to the risks of coronavirus at the time.
In response, the council’s community arts team funded Wideyed to bring the exhibition to them.
Louise Taylor, from Wideyed, used Home Time to create an ‘exhibition in a box’ containing all the elements of the exhibition on a smaller scale, with interactive pieces such as jigsaws made from the photography and a dictaphone to listen to audio.
Cllr Elizabeth Scott, Durham County Council’s cabinet member for economy and partnerships, said: “The participants who took part in the Home Time exhibition played a vital role in showing the experiences of lockdown through the eyes of the most vulnerable, so it was important to us that they got the chance to see the finished results of their work.
“Through the exhibition in a box, participants will be able to see their finished work and, with its interactive elements, can enjoy the exhibition in a more personable way knowing they have contributed to a significant piece of work.”
The Home Time exhibition in a box has been delivered to West Lodge Care Home, in Billy Row, where residents will have a session to enjoy the exhibition they were involved in.
Diane Maughan, activities coordinator at West Lodge Care Home, said: “The residents enjoyed the opportunity to be involved in the project as it was something different for them to be part of.
“They are looking forward to seeing their work on display, as well as sharing with their families who were unable to visit during the coronavirus pandemic, as this puts into words and photographs what it was like for the residents during lockdown.”
Louise added: “I am really looking forward to meeting the participants in real life since working with them remotely from January 2021. Everyone who participated in the project has been so crucial in telling the untold stories of life during lockdown.”