The Bonnet Project combines community education and local history to enable participants be part of a live international art project ‘Roses from the Heart’.
The Bonnet Project supports participants to make a bonnet and be part of an annual exhibition in Waterford City Central Library ‘Roses from the Heart’, an international project, remembering 25,566 women sentenced to transportation as convicts from Ireland and UK to Australia and Tasmania (formerly named Van Diemen’s Land) in the 1800s. Approximately 300 were from Waterford. Artist Christina Henri chose a cloth bonnet, taken from an original 1860s servant's bonnet, to name and remember each of the women who were forgotten. Many were transported simply for being poor and when given opportunities in Tasmania or Australia flourished and contributed to the growth of the emerging nations.
The Bonnet Project teaches; hand and machine sewing, following a pattern, embroidery, design and decoration, in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. Along with practical skills and in keeping with community education principles, it facilitates discussion and analysis on history, gender and class through discovering the life stories of these women. The women who make that bonnets also participate in the exhibition through speaking at the launch, writing about the process and singing in a group.
Please note that the details of events listed above are provided by the relevant Local Authorities.