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Current: Spring/Summer ’19 Term

The Arts Ecology

The Spring/Summer term of our Salon public programme intersects with thematics arising from our parallel exhibitions and billboard programme, inviting contributions from artist Larry Amponsah who will explore collective collaging techniques as well as a unique Introduction to Genealogy workshop led by historian Laura Alston over tea and cake, which has been co-produced with Joy Labinjo to support her solo exhibition ‘As We Were’.

With the support of Making Ways, the Spring/Summer term will also feature a trio of Curatorial Insights sessions. As an ongoing commitment to organisational transparency and the creation of inclusive spaces for shared learning throughout our public programme – these sessions will profile curatorial thinking, attempting to offer an urgent demystification of the role and capacity of curators within the broader arts ecology.

On the suggestion of the Making Ways Artists Panel, each session will feature the work and influences of a local curator including our staff; Public Programmes Curator, Kerry Campbell; Director, David Mcleavy as well as Curator at S1 Artspace, Laura Clarke. Each local curator will facilitate space for regional dialogue, by inviting a further contribution from a guest regional curator.


 

Drawing on the familial themes present within Joy Labinjo’s practice and her current solo show in the gallery – ‘As We Were’, Bloc Project’s is hosting an Introduction to genealogy workshop developed in partnership with the artist and led by local historian and research student Laura Alston. Over tea and cake, Laura will cover the basics to unearthing your own family’s history, sharing useful tips and sources. The session will also be an opportunity for guests to share their own unique family histories.

Laura Alston is a PhD student at the University of Sheffield. Laura’s research focuses the history of emotion, society and culture. Her work undertakes detailed analyses of the language used by women to produce micro-studies of individuals and small communities. Laura also works as a public historian in South Yorkshire and Derbyshire, including as a lead researcher on a Heritage lottery funded project Unravelling the Tinsley Court Rolls in collaboration with the University of Sheffield and Wessex Archaeology, as well as a Community Covenant funded project Sheffield Voices in WW1 for Sheffield Cathedral.

Laura has also been lead historian on a Heritage Lottery Fund project in collaboration with Kidology Arts CIC entitled The Derbyshire Stokers Project, researcher for An Open Ground exhibition at Bloc Projects in Sheffield and Project Officer for the Tinsley Time and Travel HLF funded project. At the moment Laura is working on the HLF and South Yorkshire Community Foundation project A Better Life in Lowedges and has just finished teaching a WEA course on ‘Researching your Family Genealogy’.

Free, tickets via Eventbrite


As a rejection of traditional mediums, Amponsah’s practice is concerned with the revival of existing imagery through detailed collage techniques.

To support his parallel Bloc Billboard commission, ‘In The Age of Everything, How Do We Create from Nothing?’ will encourage participants to explore themes of love which extend beyond the canons of family, age, community, race, gender and hierarchies – in an approach which privileges everyday commodities as materials with limitless creative potential. Following an artist’s talk, the workshop will focus on teamwork and acceptance, having been designed by Amponsah to create a social space which celebrates creative inabilities and technical restrictions.

Larry Amponsah (b. 1989, Accra – Ghana) studied Painting at the Royal College of Art, after partially studying for a Masters in Painting at Jiangsu University in China, he also received a BFA in Painting at Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi. Amponsah’s practice engages with the politics of imagery, utilising collage as an ongoing methodology to explore both representation and painterly possibilities.

www.larryamponsah.com

Free, tickets via Eventbrite


With the support of Making Ways, the Spring/Summer term will also feature a trio of Curatorial Insights sessions. As an ongoing commitment to organisational transparency and the creation of inclusive spaces for shared learning throughout our public programme the Curatorial Insights sessions will profile curatorial thinking, attempting to offer an urgent demystification of the role and capacity of curators within the broader arts ecology.

Session one will feature the work and experience of our Public Programmes Curator Kerry Campbell alongside a guest regional curator. Kerry has invited Marilyn Thompson, Curator at PEAK project space and art gallery in the soon-to-be-demolished Elephant & Castle Shopping Centre. 

Kerry Campbell

Kerry Campbell is a freelance curator, producer, writer and Royal College of Art graduate. Campbell’s curatorial practice is informed by her interests in regional curating, diversifying arts engagement and understanding the complex relationship between social class and barriers to arts engagement and representation. She is the founding director and curator of TMT Projects, Luton – an arts platform invested in supporting emerging to mid career artists and delivering ambitious, locally informed exhibitions and arts education projects.

The completion of an alternative free Arts MA with School of the Damned (2014 -’15) catalysed a further curatorial interest in the inclusive potential of horizontal, peer led alternative pedagogy. In 2018 she was awarded an Arts Council International Development fund to undertake international research on community led archives and the archival preservation of marginalised voices, with research published by Montez Press as a widely read essay entitled ‘Class and Curating’. Previously working with schools, families, young people and vulnerable groups within Education at the Victoria & Albert Museum, Campbell currently works as the Public Programmes Curator for Bloc Projects gallery in Sheffield and is also currently the partnership residencies Project Coordinator for Corridor8.

www.kerrycampbelltmt.com

Marilyn Thompson

Marilyn Thompson is an artist living and working in London. Her work focussed on creating temporary utopias as a way of exploring different, and sometimes radical forms of social organisation. In her recent project, BROADCAST she built a pirate radio station with an indoor field of 200 growing sunflowers, which streamed eclectic contributor content for the duration of the show. She exhibits in the UK and internationally, and also runs Peak, a project space in South East London.

Peak is an artist run project space, proudly located in Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre. Since 2017, it has shown a diverse range of projects from both established and new or unknown artists, as well as running events and conversations. Featured in Artforum’s Year in Review 2018 Peak has gained attention partly for its clear sense of responsibility to a local public as well as a more art world crowd. The spotlight has always been on projects that speak directly or indirectly to the immediate context of their display, including  R.I.P. Germain’s work on gang violence and Drill music Gidi Up; Dan Mitchell’s DEATH LOLZ exploring the psychopathology of late capitalism, and The Teachers, an audio visual collaboration between artist Ashley Holmes and musician Haich, simultaneously exploring and conjouring a world where different ideas of blackness are shared and stereotypes unpicked and problematised.

Peak-art.org

Instagram @peak_london

Free, registration via Eventbrite


With the support of Making Ways, the Spring/Summer term will also feature a trio of Curatorial Insights sessions. As an ongoing commitment to organisational transparency and the creation of inclusive spaces for shared learning throughout our public programme the Curatorial Insights sessions will profile curatorial thinking, attempting to offer an urgent demystification of the role and capacity of curators within the broader arts ecology.

Session two will feature the work and experience of Laura Clarke, Curator at S1 Artspace, alongside a guest curator (tbc).

Laura Clarke

Laura Clarke is Curator at S1 Artspace, Sheffield. She is interested the ways in which organisations can provide supportive infrastructures for artists’ practices outside of the exhibition format, how long-term or collaborative projects can be sustained and how to make visible the affective and social labour of artists and art workers. She was previously Assistant Curator at Hayward Gallery, the Barbican Centre and Nottingham Contemporary. She graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2012 with an MA in Curating Contemporary Art, having originally studied Fine Art at Nottingham Trent (2005-2008).

www.s1artspace.org

Zoë Sawyer

Zoë Sawyer is currently the Offsite Curator at Eastside Projects, Birmingham. Her role is develop their public programmes such as Park Life in Banbury. Alongside working on commissions, solo and large-scale group exhibitions, with prominent artists such as Rehana Zaman, Lubaina Himid, and Simeon Barclay, Zoë has over ten years’ experience of working within both small and large-scale organisations. Most recently as Curator at Project Space Leeds and The Tetley (Leeds), throughout its transition into a nationally recognised Arts Council England NPO. Independently, she initiated theartmarket & Kunstfreund gallery (Leeds, 2006-2012) and is co-founder and director of practitioner-led collective Mexico, who have produced projects at Focal Point Gallery (2015), The Harris Museum (2015), Eastside Projects (2014) and Two Queens (2013).

www.eastsideprojects.org

 


With the support of Making Ways, the Spring/Summer term will also feature a trio of Curatorial Insights sessions. As an ongoing commitment to organisational transparency and the creation of inclusive spaces for shared learning throughout our public programme the Curatorial Insights sessions will profile curatorial thinking, attempting to offer an urgent demystification of the role and capacity of curators within the broader arts ecology.

Session two will feature the work and experience of Bloc Project’s Curator David Mcleavy, alongside a guest curator (tbc).

David McLeavy

David McLeavy is a Curator and Writer living and working in Sheffield and is currently the Director of Bloc Projects and Founder & Editor of the website YAC | Young Artists in Conversation. He was previously the co-director of the international residency and exhibition programme Picnic Picnic and partner for the clothing label Curbar Cycling Apparel.

www.davidmcleavy.info

Alexandra Warder

Alexandra Warder is the co-founder and director of Bosse & Baum, a contemporary art gallery in London. Prior to this, she worked at a number of major London galleries including White Cube and Marlborough Fine Art. She has a BA degree from the University of Bristol, and a Masters degree from University College, London. She is on the committee of Her Stories, an annual art auction supporting female charities.

www.bosseandbaum.com