Somerset Art Works (SAW) and The Great Crane Project have been working in partnership since 2010. SAW has developed a creative programme of community engagement projects, inspired by cranes, to offer creative opportunities to local schools, groups and individuals and to help raise awareness of this fascinating conservation project.
The Great Crane Project’s central aim is to re- establish cranes as a sustainable breeding species in the UK so they can be enjoyed by future generations. In order to achieve this, the project needs to build support for landscape-scale wetland biodiversity conservation amongst the local and rural communities of the Somerset Levels and Moors. By working in partnership with Somerset Art Works, the story of the crane - and its return - is creatively brought to life in the community.
Somerset Art Works has appointed artist Melanie Tomlinson to work on the European project ‘Flying Through Europe’ in partnership with The Great Crane Project and Ash Primary School. Her artwork ‘The Company of Cranes’ will consist of a series of pre-cinema objects - such as zoetropes, exploring the Cranes’ journey from Germany to Somerset through the moving image. The objects in motion will be filmed for online viewing.
She will be travelling to Germany to join the Crane team collecting and bringing back eggs in the Spring, and will be working closely with the project teams at SAW, The Great Crane Project, Ash School and their twinned European partner schools. As well as developing her own creative response to the project, her commission also involves running workshops with local and European Schools in both Somerset and abroad.