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#PointFEST 2018

After weeks of preparation, the big day finally arrived last Saturday. Bunting was hung, the Gallery was mic’d up, the Garden Room had transformed into a glow-in-the-dark playground. The café were ready with their hot dogs, and the front doors were wide open – it was time for #PointFEST to begin.

The Main Stage lineup were all fantastic – we owe a huge thanks to Mourning Venus, Julia Waldron, George Wright, Paul Cookson and Doncaster Ukelele Group, all of whom took to the spirit of #PointFEST brilliantly and entertained the crowds with something different each time. They shared the spotlight between DJ sets, which included the opportunity for families to have a go at DJing themselves.

As the performances rolled on, it was really great to see the interaction between people – performers chatting to audience members, audience members chatting to each other. There was a real buzz throughout the building.

All image credit goes to James Mulkeen.

Meanwhile, the Studio had become home to a silent disco. With the lights dimmed and a giant disco ball hovering above our heads, casting glittering prisms of light everywhere, the Studio really looked the part. There were little tents tucked away in the corner, providing a quiet space for anybody who wanted a few moments to themselves. People danced silently or sat in the tents with the headphones on, nodding in time to the beat in their own little world.

Then there was the UV room. One of our artists, Karen, had unleashed her imagination and created a room full of sensory art fun – with the doors and windows blacked out and a UV light shining down, everything glowed in the dark. There were loads of different things to get stuck into and play with – paint, wool, pens, tape, pools full of little gooey balls, all different textures and colours. Artworks hung from the ceiling, glowing a brilliant neon orange. The UV room was all about having fun and making art in the most tangible way.

We had a brilliant face-painter from Glitter Gem who was always busy with a crowd of people around her, waiting to have their faces and arms adorned with flowers and stars and animals – even the odd Pokemon! She was very popular and everyone looked fantastic with their unique designs.

Of course, it’s not what we say about #PointFEST that really counts, but what our audience made of it. So here’s what the #PointFEST punters had to say!

"AMAZING festival today, my son has absolutely loved it!"
"A lovely relaxed environment. The UV room was really good – Karen was lovely and the face-painter was exceptional."
"[The thing I enjoyed most about the activities today] was seeing how much my daughter enjoyed herself! The entertainment and activities were brilliant!"
"The singers were great, the face-painter was fab, the poet was amazing."

The best part of any event is seeing and hearing how much attendees enjoyed themselves – and of course having a look at the art that has been produced! Here’s what people were getting up to with the neon tape in the UV room…

If you’d like to come along to The Point and experience some family fun, we’ve just released our new What’s On Guide which details our upcoming activities from summer through to Christmas. There’s loads for families to enjoy together, including workshops throughout the summer holidays in lots of different mediums, such as clay, music and printmaking. All family workshops are free to attend. You can see our new guide online here, and the What’s On section of our website can tell you what’s coming up.

To round us up, here’s an extract of a poem celebrating The Point! It was written by one of our poets, Joe. Given the success of #PointFEST, we wanted to share it with you all, as we think both #PointFEST and this poem sum up the work we do here brilliantly.

If you’re not sure what art is,
then this is the place where you can piece together a different pace.

If you’re not sure if art has anything to do with the shortness of breath that rattles in your chest when you’re asked to speak out loud,
if it has anything to do with the first night alone, or the weight of doubt you grapple within yourself,
then this, this place is especially for you.

This isn’t half price,
two for one,
a 12 month contract you can’t release yourself from. 

The only small print is,
this, this is for you.

This could be a day you marked on a calendar,
a different year you stepped out from.

This isn’t a broken promise or another relationship that tripped the skip from your step,
this, this is for you.

Open your hands.
Your fingers are not just made for smart phones and keyboards,
but for air guitar and jazz hands,
for pen and a brush,
for glue and glitter and everything else that sparkles under your touch.

Free your feet,
no longer just a means to carry you from A to B, but another way to uncage your heart.
And if you’ve got two left feet, or the grace of a double decker bus,
then just dance like you’ve got one day left.

And this could be just for fun,
this could be the space you need or it could be the first step of a new career,
Or it could be the place your hope comes from. 

Art doesn’t start in theatres or universities,
it starts in your head,
and this is the place for heads,
for arms, for legs,
to reach together towards something else.

Because when you get there,
You might just call it

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