Cross Street Arts artist, Louise Garman chose Ken Loach's "Kes" as her #inspiredbyfilm in conjuction with Leigh Film Society. On Thursday 11th July, crowds flocked to our theatre to watch the film and hear straight from Louise how her work was inspired by the 60's British classic.
The film focuses on a working-class boy named Billy who is subjected to abuse both at school and at home. The son of a single mother, Billy's existence is mostly bleak until he takes up an interest in falconry and begins training a kestrel that he finds on a nearby farm. The close bond he forms with the bird gives Billy a welcome distraction and something to focus on away from the harsh environment.
On reflection of the evening, Louise said "I wasn't expecting so many people - never mind a full house! There was a great atmosphere and buzz last night! I think everyone really enjoyed such a wonderful classic Ken Loach film. Thank you so much for having me." On the night, Louise introduced the film to the audience and told them how it has inspired her work. "As you all know, art is a very solitary endeavour and as you will see Billy spends a lot of time alone, walking through woods and wandering round getting up to mischief, just like me.Billy finds his escape from reality and a bullying sibling by channelling these emotions into secretly training the kestrel and gaining some kind of self respect and hope. For him it is about creating a new reality and self expression.The link between Billy and myself or any creative person is the same."
Speaking more about her work, Louise added: "My art deals with discarded objects found on solitary walks. Also, abandoned and neglected secret places. I contrast opposites like ugliness and beauty, life and death, black and white, harsh and tender.For me the best scene in the film is not the famous Bobby Charlton scene, it is the scene in the classroom where Billy comes to life whilst talking about his weird and wonderful pastime. My art is not a pastime or hobby, but the themes in the film, whenever I see it, inspire me to keep going in a difficult time, just as Billy did."