To celebrate the Joy Project we shared fragments of a poem by Muneera Pilgrim on the streets of St Pauls, Easton or the harbourside.
The series of billboard posters were designed to act as a trail, encouraging passersby to follow the fragments and find their own joy.
A QR code shared a unique audio artwork of Muneera performing the poem, allowing her voice to walk alongside listeners on the trail.
The Joy Project
The Joy Project is a key part of a long-term programme We Are Bristol; a collaboration with Eastside Community Trust and Ambition Lawrence Weston to investigate how the tactics of live art can help us realise the concept of ‘cultural democracy’, a situation where we all get a say in what counts as culture, where it happens, who makes it and who experiences it.
The Joy Project took the form of online workshops and were a collaboration between Muneera and women living in Bristol. Following an initial ‘taster’ workshop attended by 33 women from across the city, with a smaller group committing to take part in regular weekly sessions. We took a hybrid approach mixing analogue and digital experiences through materials sent in the post then used as part of online sessions. Through virtual workshops, during lockdown, the women involved used conversation, poetry and performance to explore joy, reflect on absence of joy and develop strategies for connectivity and care.
At a time of extreme isolation for many over lockdown, together the group built an online community, while exploring the meaning of community, connection, intimacy and joy.
The Joy Project made a deep and lasting impact on everyone involved. As a result, Muneera was inspired to create a poem and spread it across the streets of Bristol.
All images by Paul Blakemore