Charlotte Mew, a visual poet and Chisenhale studio artist, worked with three classes of Year 3 children and their parents to create a stitched narrative based on the book “The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgson Burnett.

The children looked at examples of Bengali quilts to examine simple sewing techniques and to note how elaborate detail is often made up of simple shapes. Each child worked individually or with their parent drawing and then sewing visual elements of the story using simple running stitch. Once finished the pieces were laminated and framed within the existing garden trellis which told the story in a colourful and individual way and created a permanent art installation for the school.

Parents and friends of the school were invited to the grand opening on July 9th 2009, Children’s Art Day, when the English/Bengali storyteller Shamim Azad told stories inspired by the children’s work.

The Secret garden project received Shine funding.

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