TO THE GATE AND BACK: THE ARCHER PROJECT ANNOUNCES UPCOMING PHOTOGRAPHY EXHIBITION
Sheffield based homeless charity, The Archer Project, has announced an upcoming photography exhibition set to take place 10th-30th of September in Sheffield Cathedral. The exhibition, ‘To the Gate and Back’, explores a challenging period for the charity through a series of photographic and audio/visual mediums.
In total, the exhibition features 54 photographs taken by Sheffield based photographer, Mark Harvey, who has been volunteering and taking pictures for the project for seven years. It will also show a number of films that exhibit what life was like for the project users/staff before and during the coronavirus pandemic.
“During the pandemic I started noticing a lot of people who had never been homeless turning up. People who had lost jobs as a result of Covid and found themselves at the gate of The Archer Project. These people don’t fit the single narrative of homelessness and I thought it was important to document this period of time in hopes of dispelling the stigmas attached to homelessness,” says Mark.
The exhibition is split into three sections: pre-covid, covid and the future beyond covid.
The pre-covid section shows what life was like for those using the project before the pandemic hit: group activities, meals in Domino Hall and a place to relax when street living is hard.
It moves on to covid, a very tumultuous time for the project with strict social distancing policies in place meaning meals were delivered through the bars of the gate, and then the arson attack which decimated Domino Hall and the offices.
Finally, the exhibition looks towards life after Covid and the hopes of raising enough capital to refurbish the badly destroyed rooms.
In 2020 alone, The Archer Project served over 8,400 breakfast and lunches through the gates and stayed open throughout all three national lockdowns.
Tim Renshaw, CEO of The Archer Project says: “To the Gate and Back is our story of loss and new hope. The gate should never be the place we hand out food and clothes or offer support to people. For over a year it became a symbol of us providing an inadequate service because we had to. These hard times threw up stories of hope and determination and the exhibition covers the highs and lows. We hope we have said goodbye to service at the gate but in these strange times we can never be certain.”
For more information on To the Gate and Back, head to www.archerproject.org.uk/events