40 homeless people, a New York street artist and two local creatives create a massive Manchester mural
The Doodle on Ducie Street has been created to launch the inaugural International Arts and Homelessness Summit and Festival
The mural, The Doodle on Ducie Street, has been created to launch the inaugural International Arts and Homelessness Summit and Festival in November which aims to raise awareness of homelessness and support homeless people.
“We had almost 40 artists working on this and we came together just one week ago,” said street artist and activist Joel.
“It’s been an intense week. We got together and asked what we could create that would represent everyone and what message or story we wanted to tell. Everyone made sketches and we made a composition, then each day we came out and worked on it.”
Now the wall is a wondrous array of colour, inspired by Joel’s signature style, designed to encourage conversation – perfect for the upcoming festival.
The unique creative team was organised with the help of With One Voice, an organisation which sets out to tackle homelessness in a creative way.
“Everyone came together and decided what was important to them. We came up with this concept of the guy on the mural, he’s flying through the air from challenges in his life to a brighter future,” said With One Voice director, Matt Peacock.
“It’s been an amazing experience,” says Matt. “We were really conscious that we were putting this piece of public art in the centre of Manchester, where homelessness has been on the rise. For many years people would rightly say, ‘why art?’
“And the reasons for that, which I hope you can see, are so many things – it’s about personal and societal regeneration, it’s about telling a different story about homelessness, and giving a voice to people who are and have been homeless to say what they want to say to the public.”
The artists have found the experience a boost to their confidence.
“I wanted to get involved with the mural because I