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Making the Quilt of Homelessness

One Festival of Homeless Arts and The Quilt of Homelessness.

Over the summer, Accumulate met up with David Tovey – an amazing ex-homeless artist who set up the One Festival of Homeless Arts. The One Festival celebrates, raises awareness and educates about the power of art to transform lives and also showcases the incredible art, talents and creativity of the homeless community. So, all in all – it’s a great thing and an event that Accumulate identified with and wanted to be part of.

One Festival of Homeless Arts Exhibition 2017

One Festival of Homeless Arts Exhibition 2017

The idea that we came up with for this year’s festival was to create a Quilt of Homelessness – a live art activity that would happen on the opening night of the festival. The Accumulate photographers would take instant photograph portraits of the festival visitors and then these would be sewn together to become The Quilt of Homelessness.

The Quilt of Homelessness seemed to be a really significant homeless art project to do as there are strong emotional connections with quilts representing a home or comfort as well as having family implications as, very often, quilts are family heirlooms which are passed down through the generations.

Eleven residents from Evolve Housing hostels took part in the Quilt of Homelessness project, chatting with the festival visitors and taking their portraits.

Taking the photographs for the Quilt of Homelessness

Taking the photographs for the Quilt of Homelessness

 

 

 

 

The joy of seeing the instant photographs for the Quilt of Homelessness develop

The joy of seeing the instant photographs for the Quilt of Homelessness develop

The photographing, making and displaying of the quilt was exciting, transformative and had its own energy of being created on the night, before becoming a thing of beauty to look at and admire.

The Quilt of Homelessness at the One Festival of Homeless Arts

The Quilt of Homelessness at the One Festival of Homeless Arts

Many thanks to Fujifilm Instax for sponsoring the film and also all our donors from our Quilt of Homelessness crowdfunding campaign for helping to make it happen.

The Quilt of Homelessness is on display at The Old Diorama Arts Centre, Regents Place, 201 Drummond St, London NW1 3FE until 31.10.17. After then it will be going into a private art collection.

Making the Quilt of Homelessness

Making the Quilt of Homelessness

Accumulate gets National Lottery Funding!

Accumulate wins National Lottery Funding

This week we got a most glorious email in the post telling us that we have won National Lottery Funding to run our Photography workshops next year. Winning funding like this is a real endorsement and celebration of our work, how what we do helps vulnerable young people to improve their lives and the difference creativity makes to them and their futures, so this totally made our day!

Accumulate gets National Lottery Funding!

Accumulate gets National Lottery Funding!

Along with this bumper news, the second issue of the Accumulate DECAY zine has been printed and is even better than we had expected!

Every zine is mega packed with amazing images, words, poems, designs and photographs made by 21 young people who took part in the Accumulate zine workshops and who live at the Evolve Housing hostel in Stockwell, South London. And as usual, every DECAY zine we sell will help fund our future creative workshops at hostels.

You can get DECAY at Youth Sub Culture‘s shop at 3 Carnaby St, Carnaby, London W1F 9PB and we will also be selling DECAY at events and zine fairs in the lead up to Christmas. The next zine fair we will be at is Cultural Traffic on 8th October at Kachette, 347 Old Street, EC1 VLP.

Please do follow us on our Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts to get ongoing details and info on where Accumulate will be selling. We are also going to be producing t.shirts, tote bags, posters and badges with designs from DECAY in the lead up to Christmas – so please think of Accumulate and the difference you can make by getting all of your groovy Christmas gifts from us.

Issue 2 of DECAY

Issue 2 of DECAY

 

And here are the Accumulate DECAY art prints being printed – looking good and the perfect Christmas gift for all the family!!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tonya's poster at the DECAY zine workshop

The Accumulate DECAY ZINE Issue 2

The past week we have been running a series of ZINE workshops with residents of Evolve Housing‘s Stockwell hostel. It is always a bit of a stress, not knowing if the project is going to appeal or, worse still, whether anyone is going to turn up and actually do anything. Well, the fears didn’t last long, every day people would turn up, sit round a shared table, talk and share insights, stories and their creativity with each other.

Getting creative at the DECAY zine workshop

Getting creative at the DECAY zine workshop

It became a very meaningful activity, trust was developed and creative content was produced for the DECAY zine which was beautiful, emotional, personal and incredible. They produced drawings, illustrations, poems, photographs, stories and collages and it will now be a hard task to edit, select and curate these for Issue 2 of the Accumulate DECAY zine. Tonya came to the DECAY workshop after getting a new job, and she created this lovely poster which just sums up how great she felt!

Tonya's poster at the DECAY zine workshop

Tonya’s poster at the DECAY zine workshop


The start of "reverse sunset" by Tia at the DECAY workshops

The start of “reverse sunset” by Tia at the DECAY workshops

We finished the week of with a portrait and drawing workshop at Youth Subculture. The group created their own backdrops and then had their portraits taken in front of their creative work.

Aaron's backdrop for DECAY zine portrait

Aaron’s backdrop for DECAY zine portrait

It was a very empowering session, in fact the whole project has really encapsulated what Accumulate is all about – using creativity as a tool for empowerment and progressing in life. DECAY will come out in September, so be sure to grab a copy and find out just how much talent there is, that is hidden, and just needs a helping hand to be enjoyed, appreciated and admired. It’s going to be great!

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The Accumul8 Magazine Project – DECAY

Accumul8 has started a new project with the young people living at the North London YMCA Hostel – creating stories, images and content that will be collated together, edited and produced into a magazine. The magazine is going to be called DECAY and it will be representative of all the creativity, ideas and imaginations of the hostel residents. DECAY is a collaboration between the young hostel residents and also the students at Ravensbourne and shows what can be produced in a collaborative, supportive environment where inner voices are encouraged and people feel safe to explore their ideas and imagination.

Abdul writing a poem for the Decay. Abdul has arrived from Syria, speaks no English, and this was his first day in the hostel.

Abdul writing a poem for the Decay. Abdul has arrived from Syria, speaks no English, and this was his first day in the hostel.

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Brian is leading the workshop, he is also the “scribe” for people’s stories

Nadia, from Ravensbourne College, and Kenny, from the NLYMCA hostel, collaborate on a drawing for the DECAY magazine

Nadia, from Ravensbourne College, and Kenny, from the NLYMCA hostel, collaborate on a drawing for the DECAY magazine

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2016 and we’re ready to go!

We’ve achieved so much in 2015- and there’s lots to look forward to in 2016.

We held a photography exhibition at Hornsey Town Hall, which surpassed all expectations:A Private View which was buzzing with appreciative public, press and our photographers, who got lots of networking done, and were delighted with the response to their work.

We were featured in The Guardian and on London Tonight, won an award from the Prime Minister.  We even found time to produce a calendar for 2016 for Alexandra Palace.

We still produced (and sold out of) lots of preserves, which means we now have funds for Accumul8 2016. And we managed to enjoy it all!

What’s even better is that all the participants in Accumul8 2015 have moved on to a more positive journey in their lives, including coming off of benefits, finding employment, getting back in touch with family, starting a training course and moving out of the hostel. And this is what Accumul8 is truly about – using creativity to build the confidence and sense of well-being to allow people to move forward, develop skills and feel better about themselves and their lives.

We are now just about to start the Accumul8 2016 Photography Workshops. This year, we will be working with three hostels for homeless people, in North, East and South London. So Accumul8 is now Pan London! 10 students have been recruited from Ravensbourne to help deliver the photography workshops and facilitate photography tutor supremo Othello De’Souza Hartley, and we have some AMAAAAAAZING partners on board including (SUPER DRUM  ROLL!!!) The Photographers’ Gallery, The Roundhouse, The Barbican, Birdsong London and of course, the wonderful Ravensbourne. Thank you to all of them for helping make Accumul8 happen!