Artist Sarah Nadin aims to get people talking with the help of her #chumbrella.
The #chumbrella is simply an umbrella adorned with the Twitter hashtag – a shorthand form for sharing which is familiar to millions of Twitter social media users.
Sarah hopes her #chumbrella will get people talking in open spaces around the world, but is trialling it in Stoke-on-Trent City Centre.
“#chumbrella is a social project which aims to enhance our public spaces,” said Sarah. “Quite simply, it is an easily identifiable umbrella where the individual is giving tacit consent for another person to share their space, whether the reason is for protection from the elements, or just a friendly chat.”
“Stoke-on-Trent is the perfect place to trial such a social concept. Everybody always mentions what a friendly City it is, this is an ideal opportunity to highlight this great asset”.
Armed with #chumbrellas, Sarah will be outside the Potteries Shopping Centre, close to the well-known blue clock, from 11am until 1pm on Saturday, November 8, November 15 and November 22.
Anyone taking part will be able to keep a #chumbrella and use it to keep the conversation going in their own communities
Tony Jones, of Bradwell, has already agreed to trial the #chumbrella.”I was really eager to get involved in this project when I heard about it. I think we have to find ways of breaking down the barriers between people – we seem to be increasingly suspicious of strangers – and this project gives us a way of starting to talk,” said Tony.
The project is being supported by Appetite through ‘The Kitchen’, which is an artist professional development programme.
The Appetite programme is funded by Arts Council England and is led by the New Vic Theatre in partnership with B Arts, Brighter Futures, Partners in Creative Learning and Staffordshire University.