Zine Making at Betty’s Hut. With Monkfish Productions and Projects4Change

So I led a A Little Bit of Good In The World workshop with Monkfish Productions in February, where we explored the theme of citizenship with a Projects 4 Change group at Betty’s Hut in Cowgate.

During the workshop session we used zines to tell stories about the ways we all play a part in our communities, wider society and the world.

We used A4 and A3 sizes of paper, creating an easy to make zine that required no staples or glue. I then created some prompts for the group to use around the theme, letting it be flexible to everyones needs. The outcome was brilliant, and the unique differences made the zines very creative.

Producing Place Artist in Residence

Pleased to announce I’ll be the first Producing Place Artist in Residence for Monkfish Productions. 📣

The residency explores the area around the Victorian bandstand in Saltwell Park in the communities that live and visit there. Through community workshops, which will be open to key groups and the public.

I drew this little illustration of the bandstand after a visit last week. I used to live in Bensham (near Saltwell Park) a few years ago and was a frequent visitor. It is interesting to think about how many people pass, take shelter and sit under this bandstand. The collective stories and experiences around this landmark would be fascinating to learn about.

My idea for the bandstand is like the illustration, getting individuals and groups to draw or write about their experiences in the area and create a vine that wraps itself around the bandstand. Reflective of the wild life around it. A symbol perhaps of how people have used the park during lockdown, and how the perceptions of parks has grown more important with the need for outdoor space.

I’ll be updating the blog as I go along in the project, doing lots of workshops and of course displaying the artwork on the bandstand itself at the end.

Here is a link to Monkfish Productions CIO and information on the brilliant work they’re doing http://www.monkfishproductions.org/

Unfortunately the projects on a little break at the moment, but will resume in July 2022 with a weekend of wonderful workshops to create the beautiful creates and vines around the bandstand.

Workshop Training with MIMA, Tees Valley Nature Partnership, Borderlands & Teeside University

On Friday I went to Middlesbrough for an exciting workshop based around the conservation of nature. I spent a training day at MIMA where we explored ‘The Council of Beings’, a drama and arts led workshop to make individuals think about their impact on the environment as humans.

Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art, part of Teesside University, is moving forward with the civic of reconnecting art with its social function and promote art as a tool for changing the world around them as a ‘useful’ museum.

It was interesting to see the workshop constructed in this manner, helping participants view perceptions from nature. An eye opening experience too with so many types of arts practitioners with different backgrounds.

Looking forward to seeing how this pilot develops and which areas/ groups would be connected.

GemArts Diwali Workshops

GemArts is a dynamic arts development organisation – that profile and programme new and exciting culturally diverse arts, by creating and developing high quality concerts, events, festivals, workshops and commissions with regional, national and international artists across all art forms.

So it was really fun and exciting to create a shadow puppets workshop with them. I created the Rangoli colouring sheets and have done a previous Mandala making workshop. The team based in Gateshead library is super friendly.

Due to the pandemic it was a little tricky filming the making process, so I opted to use one of the lecture rooms at Ampersand Inventions (where my studio is based) The classroom setting proved useful for the instructions I was giving.

Have a look at their range of workshops, and take a look at the resources page. If you work with a school or group who’d like to get involved just send them an email 🙂

https://gemarts.org/learning/13/diwali-online-workshops

Durham University Art School Prize 2020/2021 Heroism

I recently did a talk for Durham University’s Summer in the City Festival Art Prize Art School event talking about the minority suffragettes in British History who helped pave the way to women being able to vote. It was a great few weeks seeing all the different talks and discussing what heroism means to so many people. Super excited about being a judge for the Durham University’s Art School Prize for 2020/2021 too!

The talks (including the one for Minority Suffragettes), workshops & activities can be found here: https://sitcfestival.org/art-prize-art-school/