The “New Beginnings” Project
The eggs were always treasured by many cultures as a symbol of fertility, new life, and rebirth and as such, often beautifully decorated. From naturally dyed ones displayed at the Dove Cottage in the Lake District echoing old English traditions, through the colourful folk papercraft of Polish “pisanki” to richly ornate Fabergé Eggs and hundreds of artistic ideas in between across many different countries!
As Europe and the world goes through a global crisis due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the New Beginnings project offers a creative reflection on what we long for during those challenging times.
To assure the safety of participants, the project is presented online and therefore accessible to people regardless of where they are based.
The New Beginnings project for the European Day of Artistic Creativity is an opportunity for everybody to transform their homes into creative studios following the steps of INSPIRE, LEARN and CREATE.
Five local, Liverpool based Polish artists share their work and application of various decorating techniques to stimulate creative ideas. Let us introduce to you the artists and gallery of their work:
Marta Adamczyk, originally from Cracow, has spent the last 11 years living and working in Liverpool, where she still pursues her dreams as an artist. Marta has completed a variety of drawing and painting courses organised by the Academy of Fine Arts in Cracow, after which she worked in an interior design and decorating studio. Marta also worked as a manager of Cultural and Community Centre and in children’s hospital as a teacher and workshops manager, where she used art as a form of therapy.
More recently Marta has been involved with various local art workshops including the ones organised by Merseyside Polonia, but also others like one for the Royal British Legion run in a care home. She was also responsible for creating Easter decorations for Liverpool’s Town Hall. Marta has been running her own creative arts business for a few years now and admits that art has always been a big part of her life.
Katarzyna Jaworska comes from an artistic family, her grandfather crafted stained-glass windows in churches based in Poland, while her uncle mainly focused on paintings. Katarzyna has always enjoyed arts and crafts, especially during festive seasons. Since she was a little girl, she has been decorating the Christmas baubles and preparing the Easter eggs in a Polish traditional way. She decided to go to the ceramic school in Poland to learn porcelain painting which turned out to be her biggest passion. After finishing school, Katarzyna was painting porcelain in the Ceramics Manufacture in Włocławek, Poland. Currently based in Liverpool, Katarzyna runs a small business called “Kate” where she paints unique and personalised pottery. She transfers flowers and her other favourite motives onto Easter eggs.
Paulina Katzer (Balicka) is a Polish born and bred, based in the Wirral, artist and art teacher. She has been passionate about art since an early age but decided to study Polish language and literature degree, which she never completed. As her artistic passion was always with her, she then completed a Fine Art course at Liverpool Hope University. Currently, she works in a variety of media, but her heart is mostly devoted to acrylic paints. In Paulina’s paintings, she has always tried to capture the ongoing relationship between text and image focusing on anatomical aspects of humans and other organisms. Recently she dedicates some time developing her textiles skills with an aim to be able to implement them into her paintings. As an Art Educator, she is always trying to pass the love for art, despite of ability, as long as everyone is having a good time.
Teresa Torz lives and works in Liverpool, England. It was her father who taught her how to decorate eggs for Easter. They used to decorate the eggs together every year and they’ve always turned out very beautiful. It was a lot of fun and laughter. They used to boil the eggs in water with dry onion skins. The eggs would then turn a nice brown colour, or if the shells had red onion, they will be dark red. When the eggs cooled down, they would scratch the patterns using a sharp, thin tool. It had to be done carefully and delicately so that the egg did not break. There could be many different patterns designed depending on imagination.
Dorota Turowska moved to Liverpool nine years ago. She has been knitting and crocheting since she was a teenager, however, it wasn't her biggest passion at the time, and she can’t remember how she got into it. She was using more of the crochet threads to prepare the tablecloths than the actual wool. The interest in handcrafting disappeared but the skills have not. Dorota has recently restarted knitting and crocheting – as you can imagine - during multiple lockdowns. Beginnings were hard, frogging was very common and inevitable. She has really improved with time and now she is able to make anything!
The New Beginnings project gives an opportunity for participants to try new creative techniques. As part of the project, Merseyside Polonia presents simple step by step tutorials using art materials as well as natural ones. The tutorial videos focus on visual descriptions to reach a wider audience and make it more accessible:
- Marker Patterns Easter Eggs by Kasia Jaworska
- Wool Decorated Easter Eggs by Marta Adamczyk
- Painted Easter Eggs by Paulina Katzer
- Onion Dye and Leaf Patterns Eggs by Marta Adamczyk
- Felt Eggs by Paulina Katzer
- Folk Inspired Easter Eggs by Kasia Jaworska
- Découpage Easter Eggs by Marta Adamczyk
- Wood Burnt Easter Eggs by Paulina Katzer
- Naturally Dyed and Scratched Easter Eggs by Teresa Torz
- Crochet Easter Eggs by Dorota Turowska
The project offers a participatory experience. It is open to people of any age and for younger children with the assistance of their parents or guardians. The New Beginnings project encourages a reflection on what’s missing from people’s lives at the time of the pandemic and what they long for and dream to happen after the crisis is over. Everybody taking part can share their creation with others to be displayed at the digital gallery.
Please share your artwork or egg decorating techniques on Merseyside Polonia Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/merseysidepolonia
or event page https://www.facebook.com/events/483652546375406
or by submitting your work by e-mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org
The New Beginnings webpage will be launched on Sunday, 21st March 2021 to coincide with the European Day of Artistic Creativity and active till Sunday, 11th April 2021. During that time, there will be access to all parts of the project: INSPIRE with the digital artwork gallery, LEARN recommending tutorial videos and CREATE presenting participants’ art designs.
We hope the New Beginnings project will give you an opportunity to re-discover your inner artist and inspire others with your artwork!