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Step into the Home of a Stranger and See How They Celebrate Christmas at this Free Festive Installation

· Ali Turner · Christmas

Don't miss this free festive installation!

My Christmas Home

The city is a more magical place this Christmas with everything from festive lights to interactive art, pop-up concerts and family fun. Don’t miss out, find out what’s on & plan your visit…

What better way to get into the festive spirit than by stepping into someone else’s Christmas?

Last year, Christmas was all but cancelled. Celebrations were hastily pared back to accommodate last minute lockdown measures – we couldn’t visit our families, we couldn’t visit our friends and we couldn’t go out. But this year, we can share Christmas again, and to celebrate, Found Fiction has created an experience that invites you back into people’s homes. My Christmas Home is an interactive installation in the heart of the city and you simply have to visit.

My Christmas Home

Credit: Tom Martin

“We’re counting on this Christmas to be better than the last – but more than that, we need it to be the highlight of the whole year. The big thing about this Christmas is that we should be able to open up our doors and celebrate together – and we’ll never take that for granted again. That’s exactly what we’re saying with this installation, by giving people the chance to experience a Christmas that’s different to their own,” Steve Clarkson, Founder of Found Fiction, explained.

From pyjama-clad present opening to taking a post dinner stroll, everyone has their own festive traditions, but have you ever wondered how everyone else celebrates? This is your chance to find out as you step into someone else’s Christmas and see the festivities through their eyes. Nibble a mince pie and sip a glass of hot chocolate as your host tells you how they celebrate through a wonderfully immersive sound and video installation.

My Christmas Home

Credit: Tom Martin

The installation has been created within a shipping container, which now stands in Bond Court. The outside is covered with front doors, collected from across the city, while the inside has been converted into a home of sorts, where our families will welcome you into their world and let you in on their secrets. Step onto the porch, press the doorbell and prepare to immerse yourself in festive feels, as you write Christmas cards to the people within.

They’ve given the container a homely decor that matches the people you’re visiting and it’s brought to life with projections that bring out every detail. You’ll sit down on the sofa, surrounded by the pictures that hang on their walls and the knickknacks that brighten up their lives, as projections blanket the walls. Each family will tell their story for a week, then the installation will be completely transformed to tell a new story, so repeat visits are a must.

My Christmas Home

Credit: Tom Martin

The people who feature in My Christmas Home have been specially chosen to show the diversity of Leeds. You’ll meet a single mum celebrating with her children before heading off to her Christmas Day shift as an NHS nurse, and a student surrounded by friends, watching Christmas movies and playing beer pong. But you’ll also join a community of formerly homeless people at Emmaus to see how they come together over the festive season.

For Clarkson, our differences and our shared traditions are really at the heart of the installation. “I’m really proud to be celebrating a cross-section of society and bringing lesser-heard voices to the fore – it’s my artistic obligation, and the privilege of a lifetime. My hope is that My Christmas Home will build empathy and connections between different Leeds communities by allowing everyone to share in a multitude of Christmas experiences.”

My Christmas Home is commissioned by LeedsBID and comes to Bond Court from Saturday 27th November to Thursday 30th December 2021. It runs from 11am to 7pm Monday to Saturday and 11am to 5pm on Sundays. No need to book, just turn up – and it’s free too! This is one of a whole series of festive surprises that will make Christmas magical in Leeds.