Branching off with Out of the Forest

This year, we started a project with Waltham Forest. It’s the first time we’ve worked in the area, and it’s been a blast. As expected, the young creatives on the Element project have artistic talent in spades - it’s been fantastic seeing individual styles come through in the sessions, which this time have included decorative glass design, spoken word, and graphic art posters (sneak peak of a free-hand design below…) Here’s what we’ve discovered about the area:

  • Waltham Forest is super creative. Having worked there for the past few weeks, we’re hardly surprised that it’s this year’s London Borough of Culture. It has been a real treat discovering the vibrant artistic community living in the area. E17 Art Trail, for example, will exhibit artwork, curate discussions, and run events throughout June, and is run by a group of Walthamstow residents and artists. Big Creative Education is another local trailblazer, providing opportunities for young people from the area to get into the creative industries, and championing access and diversity in the arts.

  • There’s tons of events to celebrate the Borough of Culture. We’re especially excited about Inua Ellams’s “R.A.P Party” - especially as the Element team and young creatives alike have been massive fans of Ellams ever since we all went to see “Barbershop Chronicles” way back at its initial run at the National Theatre; then went to his amazing poetry events in collaboration with the Tower of London; and last week were lucky enough to get tickets for “The Half God of Rainfall” at the Kiln. We’ve had some super interesting discussions about all these pieces - a testament to how great art creates connections and communities and encourages self-expression and creative ambition.

  • Oh, and we’re featured on the programme! Element young creatives from Waltham Forest will be showcasing the artwork they have created during their project, to bring audiences an exploratory show about perspectives and perceptions. Fancy coming along? It’ll be on May 29th, 5.30pm-7.30pm, and all the deets are here.

Three cheers for culture!

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Eloise Acland