Dovetails is a co-design project, run between two community groups; Beamish Museum's Men's Group, and Kids Kabin in Cowgate.
Dovetails was run through Centre for Digital Citizens  and allowed us to explore citizenship through the lenses of craft and personhood, asking what it means to use creative skills to improve the lives of other people in our communities.
Working over 10 weeks, I led the project with the two groups, supported by the amazing staff and volunteers at both organisations, as well as a fantastic interdisciplinary research team.
We explored the idea of reciprocal making, building acts of citizenship through gift-giving, and creativity as an act of care. At the end of the project, each object participants designed and made was given to the other group, to support their ongoing practice.
You can find out more about the project on The Ageless Citizen, this research was funded by EPSRC.
Below is a short documentary film (15 minutes), demonstrating the work by participants in the project.

Lucky and Rickard working on a prototype

The Beamish morning group giving Lucky some feednback

Les, Fred, and Paddy building a prototype cabinet

William, Brian, and Alan putting together a leg design for FlexiGames

FlexiGames team working around the table in the farm

Image Credit: Beamish, The Living Museum of the North

Lucky meeting the Beamish boys in the shed

Image Credit: Beamish, The Living Museum of the North

Joe, Fred, and Les show off their creation

The Tambour Door Cabinet

'Our Lucky Shelves'

Image Credit: Beamish, The Living Museum of the North

William and Lucky making some pegs

Image Credit: Beamish, The Living Museum of the North

Kids Kabin trying out FlexiGames for the first time

The Men's Group Bench, made by Kids Kabin

Image Credit: Beamish, The Living Museum of the North

Finally, John has somewhere to sit down after a hard day's work in the garden.

With thanks to all the members of Kids Kabin Cowgate and Beamish Museum’s Mens Group, their friends and families and all the staff working behind the scenes to support this project.
Beamish Health and Wellbeing Team: Michelle Kindleysides, John Altoft, Paddy Clough, Ian Bean, Simon Harrison
Kids Kabin Cowgate Team: Will Benson, Colin Ridley, Jude Billate, Tyler Reese, Yurery Marin, Stephanie Beckman
Design Research Team: Henry Collingham, Jill Brewster, Rickard Whittingham, Sebastian Prost, Jayne Wallace, Justin Marshall, Ahmed Kharrufa, Dan Lambton-Howard
Northumbria University Technician: Johnny Hayes 
Music by: Simon Passmore
Film by: Henry Collingham
Research funded by EPSRC, part of Centre for Digital Citizens project code EP/T022582/1.
Find out more at The Ageless Citizen website.
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