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As You Dreamt It Woodville, Guildford

The project presented an amazing opportunity for that community in many ways. It was a once in a lifetime chance for the residents to work with some of the country’s best artists to capture and then share their dreams with those they live amongst.


CHL is committed to achieving successful and sustainable tenancies. CHL’s philosophy is to engage with the communities it serves by creating partnerships with local people, agencies and governments for social inclusion and participation.

In 2013 CHL partnered with a leading advertising firm, BMF to do a creative community project at one of CHL’s housing complexes that could bond and brighten a community in an amazing way. This was an interesting partnership between a NFP and a advertising agency to develop a unique social project in a creative way.

This started the process of identifying one such community which would benefit from this project. For this we selected our Woodville complex in Sydney which is home to 44 residents from diverse backgrounds. The project included collecting as many of that community’s sleeping dreams as possible, then together with some of Australia’s leading photographers and artists, recreate and capture them.

The project presented an amazing opportunity for that community in many ways. It was a once in a lifetime chance for the residents to work with some of the country’s best artists to capture and then share their dreams with those they live amongst.

12 residents from the Guildford community housing complex participated in the project. Collaborating with some of the country’s finest artists, the residents shared an intimate piece of themselves – their recurring dreams. Partnered up with photographers, painters, animators and illustrators, their dreams were turned into pieces of art that were exhibited on the walls of the complex.

It was then hung around the neighbourhood. So for a short time, that neighbourhood would become a gallery of the personal dreams that its residents dream.

In 2014 a formal unveiling of the artworks was organised with the residents and their families. A wall mural was also painted by James Hancock, one of the famous mural artists in Australia. This mural is painted on a centrally located wall in the complex incorporating local resident’s dreams and cultural icons.

ABC also produced a documentary on this project which was aired in January 2015. Here is a YouTube link to the trailer of this doco https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bp1yFZe_Vmk&feature=youtu.be

The Premiere of the documentary was organised at the Dendy Theatre in Sydney which was attended by over 100 people including tenants, artists, photographers and media.

The project also has its own dedicated website: www.asyoudreamt.it where all the artworks and stories can be viewed.

CHL is presently talking to various councils to showcase this project as part of their cultural planning process so it can be taken to grassroots level.

This project has demonstrated that good art has the ability to connect people no matter what cultural background they are from. This project was successful as it provided the residents an opportunity to know their neighbours a little more intimately and lastly the ability to make their living environment more human and beautiful.

This project has also triggered the residents of this complex to continue to say connected with each other. CHL is organising tenant meetings in the weeks ahead to see what community engagement programs the tenants would like to participate in going forward to keep building on the momentum generated from this project.

This unique project was aimed at creating a sense of community and social inclusion within the Woodville residents. It presented a fantastic opportunity to engage with other residents in the complex and achieve social integration. The project’s objective was akin to CHL’s vision of creating inclusive communities and therefore was a perfect opportunity to get involved.

There is such power in dreams, which we wanted to harness to bring people together. Each piece of art created as part of the As You Dreamt It Woodville project gave the residents newfound insight

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