Steampunk Bob’s Videogram Express took place in Spring 2020 during the first coronavirus lockdown.
Created to respond to the isolating impact of social distancing and shielding, this was a collaborative intergenerational project with St Stephen’s Primary School in Canterbury and the Cares Family, who support older people experiencing isolation.
Steampunk Bob’s Videogram Express was led by associate artist, Bob Karper, who curated an exchange of questions, answers and advice-sharing between children of key workers and older people living in London and Liverpool via video calls. Its intention was to build an understanding of how lockdown was being experienced by others and to generate feelings of warmth and connectedness.
It quickly became clear that the Cares Family participants were charmed by the pupils and thrilled to respond to their questions. The thoughtfulness of their answers, the care and consideration they showed to each of the children and the gentle encouragement they gave to the shyer pupils remains a delight to see. Bob Karper, Artist
The project culminated in several videos which were screened at the school on the last day of term and made available to the Cares Family participants. The Cares Family were so pleased with the videos produced through the commission that they used them to create their own short film, with the help of People United and Bob, celebrating both the project and the charity’s work.
I really believe this gave our children a sense of ‘togetherness’, and an understanding of how similar and different other people’s experiences of lockdown have been. Ms Gold, Teacher at St Stephens Infants School
Below is one of the ‘Videograms’ produced by Bob at the end of the project. You can view the full collection on our vimeo page.