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Youth Vision

Last Friday I visited a youth outreach project that I have been responsible for organising. Artist Thomasz Madajczak has been working with members of the Clonakilty Youth Cafe, funded by Ultralase Ireland and Cork County Council, to develop a short experimental film exploring ideas around vision, and how the way we see the world changes at different stages of our lives.

I first met this group with Thomasz back in May when we visited them for an introductory session, to show them what experimental film could be and discuss ideas for the project. The group kept in touch via facebook over the summer and began the project proper in late September. I  left them to it, and my visit last week was on their second to last session.

The change in the group was amazing. At our first visit they had found the films Thomasz showed them fairly incomprehensible; there was much giggling. Now they were discussing Plato’s cave and looking for metaphors they could use.

This quote from a participant sums it up:

The idea of experimental film seemed really boring at first, but now it’s so much fun

What really saved this project was the long lead in time. Our starting point did not go well. The group didn’t connect to the films shown to them, they didn’t find them relevant. Having  the summer to communicate online, letting them post bits of film they found interesting and comment on those Thomasz uploaded, gave them the opportunity to get involved in ways that were relevant to them, and for myself and Thomasz to relook at our starting point and find a new approach for the first session in the autumn based on what we now knew of the group.

This worked, the group got on board and the project is well on the way to completion. To quote Thomasz:

Beginnings are always a bit slow, however understanding and confidence build up along the process

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