Bath’s Queen Square becomes magical forest

by Alice Wright

Bath’s historic Queen Square has been transformed into a magical forest to host a contemporary arts event in the City.

The Forest of Imagination includes a forest enclosure, featuring mixed forest saplings, understorey grasses and a willow tunnel. Within it, artist Edwina Bridgeman has created a tiny world of small creatures, dwellings and birds.

In the bamboo enclosure visitors can interact with musical devices attached to the poles. Performance and activities will also take place in the bamboo-screened space. Meanwhile a 6.5m magic white rabbit will pop up in different locations throughout the four-day event.

Andrew Grant, Director of landscape architects Grant Associates, who designed the space, said: “The Forest of Imagination reinvents Queen Square as an artistic, playful world where the creative spirit of the City has fun with this familiar Georgian landscape. It’s a wake-up call to let everyone know Bath did not stop evolving 200 years ago.”

A number of Bath-based creative partners were involved in creating the magical experience, including children’s charity 5x5x5=creativity and Bath Spa University.

Penny Hay, director of 5x5x5=creativity and Senior Lecturer at Bath Spa University, said: “We believe, and research shows, that creativity and imagination can enhance well-being and transform lives. The Forest of Imagination is an invitation to adults and children to come and explore their own creativity and imagination. We want to put Bath on the map as a constellation of creative activity.”

The Forest of Imagination runs from May 15-18 and features a playful programme of installations, artworks and activities for all ages. The House of Imagination runs alongside, offering creative workshops for children and adults run by professional contemporary artists, designers and architects.

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