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Lanternhouse invites whole town to shine by choosing its true colours

  • Date: 29 September 2010
  • Area: North
Market Street in town of Ulverston, with cobbles painted in different colours

Market Street cobbles get the Profound Colours treatment. Credit: Simon Grennan and Christopher Sperandio/Lanternhouse

The population of an entire Cumbrian town is being invited to take part in a major public arts project.

The people of Ulverston are being asked to name a colour they associate with the town as part of the Profound Colours project from Arts Council England regularly funded organisation, Lanternhouse.

It could be anything from the colour of a building on the high street, the shade of a local monument, or the hue of the sea in nearby Morecambe Bay. Or something more intimate, such as the colour of a loved one's hair.

Lanternhouse, an artist-focused company based in the town, works with people at a local level to increase access to the arts through residencies, commissions and open participation projects.

All ages from among the town's 17,000 strong population are being encouraged to get involved in the Profound Colours project and people can text, Facebook, email or phone in their colours.

In October, a special book will be produced containing the town's most Profound Colours. It will be given free to every household in Ulvertson - all 5,500 of them.

A bookcase will also be installed at the headquarters of Lanternhouse, where copies of the book will be available for visitors to see.

In addition, a series of events linked to the project are taking place at Lanternhouse, including special family workshops, a tea party for parents and young children, and a film season.

Lanternhouse has commissioned international artists' team, Wrexham-based Simon Grennan and Christopher Sperandio from Houston Texas to spearhead the project. Under the name the Kartoon Kings they have worked on major public arts projects in New York, Berlin, Lisbon, San Francisco and Chicago.

Simon Grennan said: 'This is a chance to create something totally unique for the entire town of Ulverston which documents what colours are important to people today. There really is no limit on what colour people choose. It could be a shade of lipstick they see on a Saturday night to a thundery sky. There are no rules - only that people come forward with a colour of their own and either show it or describe it to us - whatever age they are and whoever they might be. We're interested in them all.'

Claire Benbow, Programme Director for Lanternhouse, said: 'Ulverston is a hugely colourful town and we are really pleased that this is an opportunity for every household to get involved with the arts. Anyone of any age can take part by telling us about their colours and everyone will be given the opportunity of seeing Ulverston's book when it's finished.'

Lanternhouse is supported by Arts Council England and South Lakeland District Council.

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