Let’s All Get Hoodwinked!

Curious Hoodwinked Banner

We are so excited to finally be able to reveal our Curious collaborative Hoodwinked Robin ‘The Green Heart of the City’ (we’ve nicknamed him Bertie).  Painting Bertie was truly a labour of love and we thoroughly enjoyed being based at the Intu Broadmarsh artists’ base and particularly meeting fellow Hoodwinked artists (hey Lois Cordelia, Adam Pekr, Mrs Maker, SMALLKID, sponsors and the Nottingham City Council team who worked so hard behind the scenes.  Members of the public called by on a regular basis, intrigued to observe the artists in action and have a sneaky peak at the army of Hoodwinked Robins ahead of their July launch onto the streets of Nottingham.

We were delighted to attend the launch event for artists and sponsors on 5th July at Nottingham Castle and enjoyed wandering around the 33 Robins all together for the first time, appreciating the fabulous skill, time and effort that has gone into their creation.

In the dead of night, the 33 Hoodwinked Robins were carefully set in place all around our city and on Saturday 7th July, the Hoodwinked Trail was declared to be officially open! Trail maps are available from various points around the city, including the Nottingham Tourist Information Centre and of course, Curious Nottingham!

We are so grateful to our sponsors, Cavalry Design, who have gone beyond their initial sponsorship of the design and have been incredibly supportive throughout the creative process – big love, people!   All of the Hoodwinked Robins will be auctioned at the end of the Hoodwinked Trail and the money raised will be donated to the amazing Nottinghamshire Hospice!

Curious Hoodwinked Robin

So, here he is, based on the ‘Green Man’ of legend, celebrating the green heart of our city.  Nottingham’s 50 Green Flag designated parks and open spaces are represented in his lacy wings.  All of these fabulous green spaces combine to create essential ‘green corridors’ to help bees and other pollinating insects navigate their way round our city.  Our Curious? studios at Sneinton Market Avenues and the heritage of the area, including Green’s Mill and the fruit and vegetables of the traditional market are depicted at his feet and if you look closely, you can spot a scattering of Notts Rocks (why not paint some Notts Rocks of your own for strangers to discover in our parks?)

Curious Hoodwinked Sneinton Market

Rest assured, we will be back to chat about Hoodwinked again over the summer (the Hoodwinked Trail lasts until 30th September 2018), not least because lovely Jess painted TWO more Hoodwinked Robins – one sponsored by Gately plc ‘Carnival Celebrations’ and a specially commissioned one for the Nottinghamshire Hospice Charity, ‘Hands of Hope’.  Photos to follow very soon!

Thanks to the fabulous Tracey Whitefoot Photography and Richard of Cavalry Design for these photographs.  Don’t forget to follow the Hoodwinked Trail and see if you can spot Bertie on your Hoodwinked adventure!  Happy Hoodwinked hunting!

~ Manton x

Curious Hoodwinked Green Flag Parks  Curious Hoodwinked Robin

Curious Hoodwinked Bees  Curious Hoodwinked Full Length

Let there be (more) light

What a joy Nottingham’s Light Night Festival is! Every year for the past 11 years, for one bracing Friday evening in February, families descend on the city to enjoy the illuminations – from fire juggling to lasers, projections onto public buildings to lantern parades, it’s a feast for the senses and the light shows are complemented with musical accompaniment and warming food and drinks.

This year, Team Curious took part in two distinct halves. We were commissioned by Nottingham City Council to send our Curious Paraphernalia Perambulator out on its first public outing and it was a proper perambulation across Nottingham’s fair city, entertaining the public on the way! We must have stopped a hundred times for photographs and videos – when we finally arrived at the historic Brewhouse Yard there was barely time to set up and folks were in and at the zoetrope, kaleidescopes and stereoscope! It was a joy to see the wonder on the faces of everyone from tiny tots to significantly older individuals as they hand-cranked the zoetrope and the lace-inspired pierced pop-up lanterns cast multicoloured shadows across the vegetable patch and warmed up the very chilly Light Night evening.

Curious Perambulator

Meanwhile, back at Curious HQ on Sneinton Market Avenues, the Peacock Parade was in full effect – teaming up with Burt and Joyce, City Arts’ magical magpies and drummers and wonderfully lit carnival costumes from our neighbours ABC Dance School and EMCCAN, the Curious Peacock led our lantern-wielding friends on a parade around the Avenues and the outdoor Sneinton Market area, delighting the gathered crowds.

It really was a fabulous night all over the city, but there was a very special feel to Light Night at Sneinton Market Avenues this year, with a light show, live music, crafts and street food market, the tenants’ windows decorated with shadow puppets, lanterns and lights, workshops, cabaret and of course, the Peacock Parade – it just shows you what can happen when a community comes together.

No doubt, the theme of light will continue as we tiptoe amongst the remaining snowdrops into the first days of Spring…

~ Manton x