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CREATE.LEARN.SHARE.GROW.CONNECT.VOICE.HEAL.EMPOWER

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ONLINE SHOWCASE

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This online showcase displays artwork created by participants during the events and workshops, as well as, artwork inspired from our spaces or participants' own lockdown experiences. The works have been divided into 4 themes; - Poems exploring lockdown reflections - Illustrations, graphics and video - Visual poetry - Poems imagining the future beyond Covid-19, written collectively

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We are grateful for the opportunity to have created an online creative community through the challenges of 2020 and lockdown, and we are happy to share some of the creativity our community inspired. Creative Futures Event Guests: Belinda Zhawi and Almass Badat

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Creative Futures Team: Jess Da Silva, Kemi Williams, Sarah Buller & Shakira Malkani This project was hosted by Collage Arts and supported using public funding by Arts Council England.

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The workshops and events focused on poetry and writing, film, photography and design; featuring guest speakers Belinda Zhawi and Almass Badat sharing their experiences of working in the creative industries.

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Our aim was to use art as a tool to reflect on 2020, to individually and collectively heal, process, archive and imagine the future beyond Covid19, and create a sense of community when we could not create and collaborate in person.

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Over 6 months, Creative Futures developed and hosted a series of online events and creative workshops for women, and non-binary people of colour aged 18+ to create new artwork inspired by their stories from Lockdown and personal experiences since the beginning of the pandemic.

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BELINDA ZHAWI

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HOW TO STAY CREATIVE IN LOCKDOWN

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stay on top of your craft fight even harder now so you can feel good about your practise

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ALMASS BADAT

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BIG, BE CONFIDENT!

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HOW TO STAY CREATIVE IN LOCKDOWN

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TANGIBLE.

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think broad,

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lockdown reflections: poems

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TIPS FOR 2020 1. You’ll have days where you could swear you’re at your lowest. 2. You’ll have days that you know you’ll look back on fondly. An oasis which, narratively, juxtaposes nicely to the world around you. Well done. 3. You’ll have days that feel like months. The words ‘that was today?’ will become more familiar to you than you would like them to be. 4. You’ll have days where you try to go to sleep at 4pm, for no other reason than to make the days go by faster. 5. You’ll have days where the thought of going back to normal terrifies you. 6. You’ll almost forget about the first two months, but you shouldn’t. Cherish the days of normality before it was something to go back to, those days were great. 7. You’ll be disappointed when you don’t get a midnight New Year’s kiss. Don’t worry, you’ll catch up later in the evening. The new decade isn’t set in stone at a minute past twelve. 8. There won’t be that many kisses from March to June, though, or hugs, or chats. See point one. 9. You’ll have days that make you feel like you’ll explode if you live through one more second of this. 10. Humans always adapt. Some faster than others. 11. You’ll wish you lived in unexciting times. 12. You’ll wish that there wasn’t so much about this era to be dissected, archived, catalogued. You’ll wish that people were less obviously prolific about doing all this work. Jealousy doesn’t suit you. 13. Even in these unprecedented times, it’s important to stay hydrated. 14. You’ll take the time to read some classics, and they won’t be nearly as fun as the dime-a-dozen whodunits. 15. Beetlejuice is not as good a film as you remember it to be. 16. You’ll rediscover why you never finished the last few seasons of Glee. 17. Yoga does help your mood. 18. You’ll never start enjoying yoga, though. 19. In many ways, it’ll be a year like any other.

Pippa Sterk


I love you / Stay away The assignment for this week was to paint an object in the room. I’m painting the mug that my girlfriend got me at the beginning of lockdown. She sent it to me by post, back when we thought that it would be impossible to be apart for a whole month. I used the mug every day for weeks, to remind me of who’s waiting for me on the other side. Then the mug started to fade, and I stopped using it as much. I don’t want it to lose its charm. I keep it safe in my cupboard. Safe from harm, safe from wear, safe from touch. The mug is bright pink, for now The closest shade of watercolours I have to match it is ‘cherry blossom’, my favourite. A creamy, solid, trustworthy colour, thick coverage, but with lots of heart. Because it’s my favourite, I’m scared of wearing it out, so it’s my least used. You can barely see any flaws in the surface of the paint. What if the painting doesn’t work out well? It would be a shame to waste the special paint by using it on something already ruined. I choose a lighter shade. It’s less accurate, but the paint is nearly finished, so I might as well use it all up. In silence, I make a still life, preserved and neglected. -Pippa Sterk, 2020


To be still And consistent in that stillness To give yourself those moments of peace Meditations when you feel like there is nothing but chaos around you To sometimes just sit in stillness because it feels good - delicious even To be still And allow yourself to take a breath Breathing deeply and fully before you release Centring yourself Grounding yourself Being present with self To be still Savouring the moments when you can enjoy the things around you The sun's warmth The breeze brushing over your skin The moon and stars and the deeply dark night sky How the rain sounds against your window When you are wrapped within your sheets Your laughter To be still Is something that we know is important But is not something that we always do Or something that we cherish Until we have those moments where we do it And then realise To be still Is one of the blessings that we sometimes deny ourselves Until We have those moments where we don't So this is a reminder Find the time To Be Still - Kanika Laing, May 2020


Life in Lockdown Overwhelming. That has been the overarching emotion that I have felt in this period. On the one hand being someone who enjoys being in their own space; having the restrictions in place where you had to be at home for me was not as challenging as I thought it would be. I was also in a position where I was able to work from home which I know not everyone was able to do – so I made sure I my gratitude practice was even heavier than before. However, the part that I did find hard was when restrictions were lifted and having to go out and be part of the general population again. I had instances in the middle of food shopping where the anxiety that I felt being around other people was immense. I would look around and think “why are there people out here?” This took time for me to get to the other side of. One of the things that I have thought about is there is a lot of concentration on getting the economy back but what about the social and emotional repercussions that this has created for us? There are still people who are terrified of interacting with their loved ones – what do we do to resolve this? The amount of changes that we have seen in this period – for me – has been at times hard to process. The amount of tragedy that we have had to witness at one point was taking its toll on me – I found it unbearable. Not only do we have to navigate a global pandemic, but we also witnessed multiple brutal murders against the black community which sparked protests and further clashes with the community and police. This was and is in addition to the countless other atrocities happening globally as well as other natural disasters. In the age of information and the fact that we have such ready access to it we have always been bombarded with everything and anything that happens, whenever it is happening. But when we have been confined to our homes, we have been exposed to it even more and for me it felt like there was no escaping it. With every new tragedy that happened – which seemed like on a daily basis – I was conflicted as to whether I should also be posting on a daily about the many things that are wrong with the world which is fuelled mainly by the people in it. Especially the ones in power. Or trying to share some joy in moments when it seemed like there wasn’t any. This time has also shown me how complex and layered human interaction can be – with others and with ourselves. Especially with myself. I found that I was experiencing several emotions – sometimes within the same day – and it seemed like I would be crushed underneath them. Sometimes all I could do was sleep so that I didn’t have to think about anyone or anything. But I am blessed with the people that I have around me. This was a time that I got to really spend with loved ones and get closer to them. And it has been amazing even if it has come with some challenges. Now the question that lurks in the back of my mind is: what will life look like after lockdown? I know that it won’t be the same. - Kanika Laing


My eyes search deep into yours,

hoping to land somewhere within your soul.

I imagine what it would be like to love you for eternity.

To share in your grievances, unexpressed to the world.

To carry your secrets to the death.

I adorn your love, in all its regality.

A crown proudly resting atop my head.

- Moyo Lawal


My Red phone

it. and out of bounds.

My red phone has been good to me. It never lets me down. I capture things with It's hot

I can ring people, message people, WhatsApp people, take photos of people, whether they like it or not. To operate it I need wifi and a battery, but I cant cook with it. Red is a powerful colour, its the colour of authority, its the colour in most flags around the world. Tomatoes, Strawberries, cherries, apples are red. Blood is red. When you prick your finger, you see blood, then you know you are not dead! Laureen


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ILLUSTRATION, GRAPHICS & VIDEO

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The Tarot Project

Mariana Denton, 2020

Subverting the universality of the tarot card deck, the artist chose twenty-two people that embodied the major arcana cards, creating portraits specific to each individual. The aim of this project is for the viewer to read themselves through someone else’s perspective, broadening their point of view.


CLICK OR SCAN HERE TO VIEW "COMIC BOOK" VIDEO


@SCHIRALDI_AF


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VISUAL POETRY

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CLICK OR SCAN HERE TO VIEW "BEYOND ACHE" FILM


(an extract) written by yasmina n.


-lyds @lydiahenriettao


CLICK OR SCAN HERE TO VIEW "TODAY (EXCERPT)" FILM


"Today" Christopher Kirubi Today we placed a red velvet blanket over the grass and lie close and still in pools of sun inspired sweetness it feels as though things are getting better even if i don’t dare to think so I push my face into the huge leaves of a sunflower


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IMAGINING THE FUTURE BEYOND COVID-19: COLLECTIVE POEMS

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Word 1: Community Collective I need the people in my community to interact with each other, without being forced together by breakout rooms. I want us to continue caring about not letting people become isolated Operate Mum/Dad all together Mash up with everyone Understand everyone and everyone pulling together Neighbours Involved in helping young and old Town and village involvement of events Its for today, yesterday and tomorrow Shared common humanity Start living what it means to be neighbourly Remember we’re all one love vibration Let’s be open Feel closer Operate Mum/Dad all together Community is love Peace is only a dream for the optimistic. I am not one of them.


Word 2: Love and Relationships Deeper and stronger Rooted and mature Emotional intelligence Unity, Oneness, Compassion GROWTH. More growth. Choosing that growth instead of staying stuck in resistance. Call your mum. Call your dad. Hold your loved ones closer. I can’t imagine I ever thought I could get enough of touch. What am I doing for others that are really about trying to meet my own need (and failing?) Codependency to co-existence and collaboration Surrounded by friends We can have fun and go on stupid adventures We’re happy growing up means you don't choose who you date, cause if your mum or dad don’t like em, then there's; I need my skin to become a gateway to someone else Trust Surrendering ego Do I know what love is? Allow it in freely so it can flow out from me freely Love and relationships are always entwined. I love them, but they don’t love me. They ‘like’ me. Well, that’s just fome/ Growing up locally in a village means you don’t pick and choose who


Word 3: Nature I want to look after something Wisdom of the ancients taking us deeper into lessons that we thought we had already learnt. Reminding us there is more ego to shed, more room for spirit to grow. The skies only shine so bright because they’re for you look up they say! See us, ask us, we exist for you. Ever watchful ancestors that live in the mountains and the trees and the stars and the breeze of the ocean, all in tandem with your soul. Nature is resisting, floods, fires, deep freezes, telling us to stop, we will not win. Look at the leaves, every vein like a palm, the lines holding our future Trees brooding beneath overcast moody skies. Tips of leaves sparkling the dappled sunlight. We give nature love and it will love us in return. They all form this excellent ode to Your greatness and beauty Beauty beyond expressible words.


Word 4: Me/ Self An unedited co-operative poem created through freewriting. Each participant wrote one line I want to know when bits that are me, interact with bits that are not

Let me respect my time and honour how I’m feeling in any given moment Allow myself to trust my instincts

Slink into the moment, settle into my skin Loving ME. Abundantly, assuredly, confidently, effortlessly. How I deserve to be.

Say no

Belief in my power. Pride in my spirit.

Self validation being the only validation I need.

I am the culmination of my ancestors and the interactions they had with the world.

I am a unique combination that has survived. I am a conglomeration of impulses, collected by nobody but itself, into a burlap sack of temporal and spatial coherence.

Be playful

Do things and spend time with people I find nourishing

The hardships have passed and I can relax once more.

I need to fall in love with myself Whew. I need therapy.


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Special Guests Almass Badat Belinda Zhawi Creative Futures Team Kemi Williams Jessica Da Silva Shakira Malkani Sarah Buller Wajiha Ahad

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Participants Christopher Kirubi Yasmina Nuny Lydia Luke Kanika Laing Mariana Enriquez Denton Bustinza Anna Francesca Schiraldi Pippa Sterk Moyo Lawal Laureen Davy Yaz Min Nafisah Javed Julie Lee Anetta Jones Emmy Beltran Eloise Godfrey Irem Aksiner Sonya Chee Kulvinda Jii Bonnie Boucek

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Special thanks to Showcase Contributors

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Supported using public funding by Arts Council England

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Hosted by Collage Arts

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Profile for Collage Arts

Creative Futures Online Showcase  

Digital display of artwork - poems, illustrations, graphics and video, visual poetry and collective writing - inspired by experiences of loc...

Creative Futures Online Showcase  

Digital display of artwork - poems, illustrations, graphics and video, visual poetry and collective writing - inspired by experiences of loc...