Golden Bee Dew at Norwich Dandifest
St Margaret’s Church of Art, Norwich UK.
April 23 – May 6 2017
The bee has long been a symbol for humanity’s connection to the natural word,
to prophecy and rebirth.
The global collective Golden Bee participated in the Norwich Dandifest 2017 as part of the northern spring swarming / exhibition tour (earlier in Stockholm). In Norwich there was painting, sculpture, interactive installations, flower garden plantings, film, performance, multiple community events, free art workshops and more.
Tasmanian Queen Bee Edwina Blush, in collaboration with Eloise O’Hare and her fellow Norwich Dandies created a Bee-themed installation with an art exhibition and other creative events to engage with community and raise awareness of the threats to the bee population worldwide, in particular their decline.
Dandifest took place in various galleries, cafes and shops around Norwich but the main hub was St Margaret’s Church of Art on St Benedict’s Street, open for two weeks from April 24 (Opening party night) until May 6 (Closing party night).
On the opening night of Dandifest Golden Bee Edwina Blush gave a wonderful vocal performance, singing the bees (from 02:00 in the Launch video Dandifest 2017). Also on opening night members of the LGBTQ, special needs and marginalised communities of Norwich attended and attuned to the Golden Bee message. On the final night of Dandifest, Friday 5th May was Glooptopia at Norwich Arts Center with performances and music. Once again Edwina wowed the audience with her bee-inspired poems and songs.
The gallery space exhibited an exciting collection of new interdisciplinary, mixed media works, featured UK artists were Eloise O’Hare, Christina Sabberton, Dugald Ferguson, Beatie Fox, Vince Laws, Mark Scott Wood, Hayley Hare, Oosing Gloop, David Shenton, Falcon Scott, Atelier Fantarium, Gwendoline Noltes, Luisa Orduño Cázares, Emma Jarvis, Alice Lee, Edwina Blush, Barrington Farm, Stepping Stones and Patrick the Elephant.
The artists that exhibited in Golden Bee Dew were (from Queensland, Australia) Bernadette Boscacci, Robyn Veneer Sweeney, Denise Weightman, Nina Dawson, Billy Doolan, Fairlie Sandilands, Julia Cazita-Mazeaud, (from NSW, Australia) Kassandra Bossell, Scott Treveleyan, Jessica Hannah, (from Victoria, Australia) Chai Balcombe, (from Tasmania, Australia) Edwina Blush, (from Norwich, England) Eloise O’Hare, Christina V. Sabberton, Jenny Ferguson, (from Stockholm, Sweden) James Barrett and Erika Chotai.
The need to protect and maintain our environmental biodiversity is foremost in the work of golden bee, and is expressed and explored through the symbolic, historical and cultural associations connected to bees.
The activities of Dandifest play with and change the ecology of Norwich each time it is held and this year was no different. New garden beds and window boxes full of flowers were planted in the town to bring the bees and celebrate the coming of spring.
Golden Bee made many connections with the Norwich community during Dandifest. The installation was a favourite port-of-call for visitors on the Flintspiration train. FLINTSPIRATION is organised by the Norwich Historic Churches Trust (NHCT), which cares for 18 Grade 1 listed medieval churches in Norwich that are no longer used for worship and have been deconsecrated.
Norfolk beekeeping is a long standing tradition and the local raw honey is well regarded for its healing abilities. At the Norwich School of Art and Design (the old Technical Institute) there is a mosaic created in 1899, featuring 20 bees, presumed to be symbolising industriousness.
Golden bee is a global project that places creativity, knowledge and expression about bees at the heart of conversations around climate change, cultural production, collaboration, building creative economies and our shared future.
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