Doncaster artist shines light on issues

Doncaster artist Les Monaghan.
Doncaster artist Les Monaghan.

An acclaimed Doncaster artist is hoping to shine a light on the plight of people living in poverty in his latest project - but he needs your help to turn his ideas into a reality.

Les Monaghan is well known in the town for his eye catching exhibitions that focus on everyday life and he is hoping to raise awareness of those who live in destitution through his latest project ‘Relative Poverty’.

He is hoping to find three families who will work with him and reveal how their lives have been affected by Government cuts.

Les also needs to raise £4000 to help get the project off the ground.

He said: “Within a stone’s throw of where you live there is a family living in destitution. Many of us in the UK live comfortable lives - I want to give you a glimpse of what life is like for those who do not. Now that the temperature has dropped, countless families in Doncaster are cold in their homes, unable to afford fuel costs, or balancing heating bills versus food.

“Some of us are better at providing direct help, my skills are in communicating ideas to a wider audience visually. These families, and the thousands like them, are what keeps me awake at night.

“I want to communicate to the widest possible audience the realities of their lives.

“This is my way of trying to help, firstly, through awareness raising among the community locally, then to our policy makers, and if they don’t listen, ultimately to the electorate. By focusing over the long term, and with care, on these families, we can help others across Yorkshire and the UK.”

He added: “My new project, Relative Poverty, aims to raise awareness of those who are in destitution by working ‘in residence’ with three families.

“All are in their predicament as a direct result of recent governmental policies. The work will reflect the effects these policies have on each of the families.

“I am raising money to spend the time with a number of families creating work that is in-depth, rooted in documentary and co-authored. I will be ‘in residence’ with each family for 10 days. We will create mixed media and collage works to allow you to hear their voices directly.”

He has now launched a crowdfunding page in a bid to raise the money needed for the project and has so far received donations of £360.

Les is hoping to exhibit his new work across all of Doncaster’s 24 libraries in 2017/18, which has the potential to reach 66, 000 registered library users.

Another of his art projects is currently seen by thousands of visitors to Doncaster every day.

The Desire Project features pictures of town residents in the Frenchgate Centre expressing what they want in life.

To support his fundraising appeal visit http://www.crowdfunder.co.uk/relative-poverty