Bell Square is the outdoor arts space in the heart of Hounslow, a place where anyone and everyone can come to see some of the best outdoor performers in the world, for free.
Featuring anything from circus to dance, acrobats to illuminated sculptures, the shows aim to delight and inspire people whether they’re 4 or 84 and whatever their background or previous interest in the Arts. Situated at the end of Hounslow High Street, it is a permanent outdoor space – a large square, with seating and standing space, and performances every other Saturday. The events are programmed and produced by Watermans working in partnership with London Borough of Hounslow.
One of the events hosted during the summer of 2015 was The Colour of Time by Artonik, a performance company from France. This was a beautifully conceived promenade dance performance which traversed the length of Hounslow High Street, the audience moving along with the performers until they reached Bell Square where there was a climatic joyous celebration of colour and music inspired by the Indian festival of Holi, the audience joining the performers to dance and throw Gulal powder.
The Colour of Time was hosted in association with the Global Streets project supported by Arts Council England, which brings international performers to places across the UK usually characterised as having a low engagement in the arts. The Colour of Time demonstrated the appetite for the vision, imagination and sheer sense of surprise that international outdoor events can offer. It’s not just about watching but participating too, in the events themselves and workshop activities at Watermans leading up to the event.
Research carried out in conjunction with events like The Colour of Time indicate they contribute towards building a sense of community and pride; 85% agreed these events bring people from different communities together and that they are likely to return, for the performance and the atmosphere.