posted on 1 June 2012

The Wildcats Community Trust will break new ground in rugby league after being successful in a bid to the Arts Council which will see the club have an Artist in Residence.

Jason Wilsher-Mills will be the Wildcats first ever Artist in Residence from September 2012.

Wakefield-born artist, Jason Wilsher-Mills will spend a year as the Wildcats Artist in Residence starting this September, using iPads to create art with young people around the district.

Jason is wheelchair bound and uses iPads for his art and it is through this medium that he will create fifteen commissioned pieces, thirteen of which will feature some of the clubs all time great players.

Fans will have the chance to choose which of the clubs players feature in the pieces, with players from each decade from the 1950′s onwards set to be represented.

Within the year’s residency, Jason’s work with the local community will see a 60-metre mural stretching across the length of the Eric France Stand at the Rapid Solicitors Stadium telling the story of the club from its founding in 1873 to the present day.

Jason’s work within the community will go beyond schoolchildren, as he will also mentor young artists at Wakefield College, enabling them to gain an insight from a professional artist whilst themselves also being empowered with the knowledge to teach younger people how to use iPads for art.

The history of the club will be brought to life for the pupils with actors portraying some of the past greats in schools as children learn about the history of the famous old club alongside the art.

“This is a fantastic opportunity for the Community Trust,” said Wildcats Director of Education, Mark Winder.

“Our watch words are ‘Engage, Inspire and Achieve’ and we’re allowing the community to do so through this project.

“Jason is a prime example of this.  He’s engaged by the club, inspired by the club and he’s achieving.  He will work within the art circles in Wakefield and allow them to experience something new and exciting.”

“It’s a fantastic celebration of what can be achieved,” commented Jason.

“The work made throughout the year is going to be wonderful, will tell a story and be very accessible.

“I’ve been a Wakefield Trinity supporter ever since I was a young lad and to do this is a bit of a tribute to my dad who passed away in 2010.

“He used to take me to the games and one of the first I went to was at Wembley in 1979 and I thought that all rugby games were like that.  Those are the sorts of stories we want to tell.

“I want to show what’s special about this club and its supporters.”

Wildcats TV caught up with both Jason and Mark to discuss the project and you can watch the video by clicking HERE or selecting the video tab on the Wildcats homepage.

If any local businesses or individuals wish to be part of this groundbreaking project then please contact Wildcats Director of Education Mark Winder on 01924 211611.

This is Wakefield. Together We Are Stronger.

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