Its About People & Bringing People Together

Patchwork Flag Project

As it became more apparent that, in 2020, due to ongoing Covid-19 restrictions it would be unlikely that we would be able to hold the annual Pride Festival. Our team of directors started planning alternative events and activities that would help keep the momentum of ‘Pride’ going whilst maintaining the visibility of the LGBT+ community in Plymouth.

As part of this with funding from the Plymouth Octopus Project Street to Scale Fund, Pride in Plymouth director Duncan along with some of his creative friends launched the ‘Patchwork Flag Project‘ .

The aim was to create a patchwork rainbow flag that is full of individual expressions of those within the LGBT+ community and bring them all together as one big flag. There is no timescale and the flag can continue to grow over future years providing a living legacy born out of the global Covid-19 pandemic.

Each completed section of the flag will be become part of the Pride in Plymouth LGBT+ Community Archive and will form a major part of the display material to prompt discussion, debate and education.

Early panels on show Plymouth Art Weekender 2020

September 2020, only a few weeks into the project, saw the first few panels in the making put on display at Leadworks as part of the Plymouth Art Weekender. This generated interest in the project and many more designs was submitted as a result.

A few weeks later these panels and the project was on display as part of ‘Pride Rewind‘ our virtual pride event held on the on 8th August 2020.

The Raimbow Connection exhibit at The Box, Plymouth

A year later some of the completed panels were on display at The Box as part of the Rainbow Connection exhibit. This exhibit discussed the challenges and opportunites in capturing and sharing queer stories and histories as part of the city’s heritage. The exhibit became an area in The Box deliberately curated to hold space for individuals within the LGBT+ community to express something of themselves. The flag has become a living and constantly growing work to challenge perceptions and celebrates voices that may not be otherwise heard.  Gilbert Baker’s original eight colour variation of the flag, from 1978, is used to be both more inclusive and to recall the political roots of the symbol.

For 2022, the theme of LGBT+ History Month is Politics in Art so the flag offers an opportunity for the LGBT+ community of Plymouth to continue to reflect their lives, stories and ideas in both art and heritage.

There is an ongoing open call for any contributions to this project should anyone wish to add their voice and, if you’d like to do so please contact us and we will get back to you to let you know how to best share your creative idea with us.