A Coventry-based live event company has been working with pupils from across the city to reconnect with local blue spaces ahead of COP26 as part of its new project FLOW.

FLOW - Future Life of our Ocean's Wealth is a project in three parts - Navigate, Activate, Create which aims to engage children, communities and artists with Ocean recovery through a creative arts framework. It aim is to inspire, develop awareness, nuture care and challenge everyone to consider both their personal and our collective environmental responsibility.

Over the last 6 weeks, Imagineer have been working with schools in Coventry to reconnect with local blue spaces to increase wellbeing and develop environmental awareness. Working with primary schools across Coventry the project started with an outdoor performance as Captain Cordelia, her crew and a tricycle powered ship arrived in school playgrounds. The ship had lost its way and the crew were carrying an important environmental message about how our Oceans are being affected and damaged through climate change, pollution and other issues.

In partnership with Warwickshire Wildlife Trust and the Canal & Rivers Trust, the pupils then embarked on a series of water safaris visiting local rivers and waterways litter picking, testing the health of the water, and discovering the wildlife it supports before spending time at the Imagineerium at the Daimler Powerhouse trying out a range of creative activities from soundscape and recording sessions to collage work, movement and performance.

The schools are currently imagining and co-creating their own inspiring performances and artworks aimed at engaging the wider community with Ocean recovery. As part of this, and with international events such as COP26 on the horizon, the pupils are preparing their own messages to send to world leaders.

The artworks created by pupils as part of the Navigate phase of FLOW will form part of the Activate programme, an Ocean’s Fair titled Turning the Tide which will take place in April 2022. Imagineer and partners Media Mania are encouraging young environmentalists aged 18 to 25 years to get involved and help curate the programme for the Turning the Tide event. Turning the Tide will be a place to ask questions, have conversations and find out how to get involved in ocean recovery, take action and participate in the #30×30 campaign.

FLOW is already, and will continue to, engage people with blue spaces and ocean recovery through community engagement, social activism and performance art and engineering. The project culminates in April 2022 with the Create element, a large-scale spectacle performance Milesians - The Coming of the Gaels, which will combine art, engineering, circus, aerial performers, live music, theatre and projection to tell this ancient Celtic origin myth of the last invaders of Ireland.

Imagineer is working with a range of partners to deliver this Coventry City of Culture 2021 project including: Coventry City of Culture 2021; Johnny Donnelly, ARCANA (Ireland); The Canal and River Trust; Warwickshire Wildlife Trust; Circolumbia; Rebel; Manifesto Aerial and Media Mania.

FLOW is funded by Coventry City of Culture 2021, Arts Council England Cultural Recovery Fund 2, Medwell Hyde, and Coventry City Council and the European Social Fund.

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