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Windows of Reflections

Fused glass artist Helen Davies worked with the community in Frodsham to create a permanent installation reflecting our collective experiences of the pandemic.

Three beautiful fused glass panels had just been installed in Castle Park Arts Centre when staff overheard a father explaining what the pandemic was all about to his young child who was contemplating them.

The pieces sit in the arts centre gardens, refracting the autumnal light, and reflecting on the Frodsham community’s experiences of Covid-19.

The three panels encased in wood are a permanent display and a result of Covid-19 Reflections programme of events. We commissioned artist Helen Davies, who creates beautiful work from her Cheshire garden studio under the name of Cala Glass, to create the work in collaboration with the community.

Using Castle Park Arts Centre as her base, Helen met with many people who shared their personal reflections of the pandemic. Loss, isolation, fear and stress were all raised as emotions felt by people during what were described as dark times. But people also remembered enjoying the peace and quiet, spending more time outdoors, relishing their newfound free time and using it to exercise or spend time on their hobbies.

They discussed how some of the personal relationships improved and how new attitudes to home working have improved their lives longterm. They found more kindness and consideration for others, and had the opportunity to evaluate their lives, relationships and careers.

Using various media, the workshop participants created visual representations of their reflections which Helen then incorporated into the fused glass. The trio of panels represent a progression of people’s emotions. The first is blue, because that’s how people said they felt at the beginning of the pandemic. The second is rainbow coloured – that enduring symbol of hope during the pandemic. The third is inspired by nature – something most participants found solace in.

“It was absolutely amazing meeting all those that participated in the workshops,” Helen said. “I found it intriguing how participants expressed themselves creatively after reflecting on their experiences. It was incredibly heartwarming to hear their individual experiences and stories. I would like to thank everyone involved in the project.

“It was a most enjoyable experience and I feel honoured to have been selected for this commission. I hope that the installation will be treasured by visitors to the gardens at Castle Park for years to come.”

The panels were installed on the garden walls, between the children’s play area and the arts centre, at the beginning of September alongside a photo exhibition in the arts centre foyer which explained the making of the panels from workshop to installation.

On 23rd October the display will be relocated to Theatre Porto, where a mass sharing event will bring together all aspects of the Covid-19 Reflections programme.

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