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Accumulate – The Art School for The Homeless

A new academic year and brings fresh focus for Accumulate

We are Accumulate and we are the first Art School for the Homeless. Based in London, we provide art school level tuition by professional tutors for people who often feel excluded from the regular education system. We work with participants from hostels from all over the capital. We offer each participant the opportunity to find empowerment and the chance to further their education through creativity.

Our course offer is extensive. Joining the Accumulate course means a participant can study a wide range of creative mediums. Our workshops include photography, fashion, visual arts, illustration and film which gives the group room to fully explore their creativity. We work in collaboration with major cultural institutions, universities and industry professionals to support our group’s learning.

This year Accumulate is super ambitious! Our course starts in October running all the way through to June 2020. We offer progression routes via our scholarship scheme onto the Access course at Ravensbourne University London. From there the Accumulate participants go onto the BA course. This is significant as it gives participants the chance to gain a university education which otherwise may not have been possible.

Thank you for following along on our journey. We can’t wait to share with you our new programme of workshops starting this Autumn. Watch this space….there is SO much to come!

Youth Culture – An Accumulate Exhibition

The Accumulate 2019 Exhibition launches April 2019!

On the 9th April, ‘Youth Culture’ the Accumulate exhibition for 2019 launches at Autograph in Shoreditch, East London. We are so looking forward to showcasing the incredible creative achievements of the group of participants who have taken part in the Accumulate programme this year.

Our group have covered a wide range of creative mediums in a really short space of time, given we only started with the group in January! We have introduced new workshops this year including fashion and sculpture which the group have absolutely loved. Collaborating with some big industry names which has been an absolute thrill for all of us involved.

The Road to Youth Culture

The start of the year brought together the group of participants. Each person taking part is affected by homelessness. Participants have come to from 7 hostels across London. For the first of our workshops we worked with our exhibition hosts and long term collaborators Autograph. Participants got to hear about the context and background to their extensive photographic archive as well as learning new skills with the camera before shooting on location around Shoreditch. Getting out of the hostel environment is a very important element to our project. Participants enjoy the experience of visiting and exploring new places as a focus to their workshop, helping them gain confidence away from the hostel.

On location in Shoreditch (Photo credit Sabela Peinado)

Fashion Workshop

2019 was the first time we have worked with a fashion theme in the Accumulate programme. We collaborated with international fashion brand Levis, London cultural space Somerset House and the photography archive, Youth Club Archive on this workshop. Participants got inspired, working with the theme of Youth Culture, reviewing Youth Club’s amazing social history archive of images. They then went on, using these influences to customise the iconic Levis Trucker Jacket to give it their own unique and personal look. An amazing outlet for self expression, learning new skills and finding inspiration working together as a group. The levels of creativity and imagination was just outstanding!

Customised denim jackets (Photo credit sabelapeinado.com)

With the jackets complete, the group took part in photoshoots outside Somerset House and on location at the Printworks venue in East London. The group were fashion models and photographers for the day! The took  it in turn to photograph each other, perfecting their newly learned camera skills!

Shannon Stevenson Glowing Out Of Turn

Photo Credit Shannon Stevenson, Accumulate Participant

Sculpture Workshop

Along with a fashion workshop, we were so excited to introduce Sculpture to the programme this year. This workshop was kindly funded by Art UK as part of their ‘Art is all around you’ UK wide sculpture project. We also partnered again with our friends at Autograph. We were very excited to hold part of the workshop at the BBC Broadcasting House! Inspired by the sculptures and history surrounding this iconic building, our participants worked on themes that influenced their identity and own ideas of youth culture. They began modelling their sculptures first from cardboard then covering them in plaster before finally painting them with breathtaking results!

Adding plaster to a sculpture (Photo credit sabelapeinado.com)

Zine Making

Amongst all this we also found time to create Issue 4 of the Accumulate zine Decay!! The creative ideas were first produced by our group, putting their own thoughts and feelings down on paper. This work was then passed on the 60 graphic design students at Ravensbourne University who worked to create the final spreads seen in the zine.

Creating at the zine workshop

 

The Youth Culture pop up exhibition will feature all the work our participants have produced during these workshops, including a show of the stunning customised Levis jackets and the official launch of Decay 4. As part of this event we will also be awarding scholarships to selected Accumulate participants, giving them the opportunity to further their creative studies on the Access HE course in Design and Digital Media at Ravensbourne University London. A life changing opportunity.

There is still time to register for this free event – click here.  Please show you support for our participants and come along. We would all love to see you there!

Accumulate Fashion Workshops – February 2019

This February we have been so proud to partner with some amazing organisations, Levis, Youth Club Archive, Ravensbourne University London and Somerset House on our series of fashion workshops to coincide with London Fashion Week.

Accumulate participants wearing their Levi’s Jackets before the workshop

CREATIVE WORKSHOPS

All of the participants are young people living in hostels or temporary accommodation across London. Youth Culture was the theme of this project, with expression through fashion being the aim. Our participants worked throughout the week on their creative skills. They customised the classic Levi’s denim Trucker jackets (the fashion icon of youth culture). The jackets were so kindly donated to the project by Levis UK – thank you! Customising, adorning and decorating the jackets created an extremely individual, unique and personal look and the results were phenomenal! It allowed the group to express their thoughts, feelings and experiences in a creative and visual way. At the end of each day of creativity we photographed the group outside the iconic buildings of Somerset House in Central London. We were so lucky to have renowned photographer Duncan Raban work with group, encouraging them to model their creations with confidence.

Former homeless artist David Tovey, helps Crystal on the Accumulate Levi’s workshop

Imania uses graffiti and personal statements to decorate her jacket

The Accumulate participants worked consistently over 5 days. They came to every workshop at 10am and finishing at 5pm, travelling across London to attend. This is a major indication of their sense of achievement, drive and ambition and really shows how much this project meant to them.

FASHION SHOOT

The finale to our week was a fashion shoot with Youth Club Archive at Printworks London in Surrey Quays. This amazing location has a real industrial edge, such a great backdrop to our shoot. Here our participants had the chance to be models and fashion photographers for the day! We we thrilled to welcome some amazing make artists from the London School of Media Makeup and the London School of Make Up to make the group feel glamorous for the shoot! Participants took turns modelling their customised jackets and photographing each other, practising their camera skills on set.

The group were really overwhelmed with what they had produced and achieved within such a short period of time. They were so proud of themselves, something that can often be denied to them because of their circumstances.

We could not have achieved this ambitious and successful project without the support and involvement of our partners and of course the amazing Accumulate participants.

Photo credit – Sabela Peinado – sabelapeinado.com

 

Accumulate Autumn 2018

We thought we had a busy Summer….well Autumn and up to end of 2018 has been jam packed!

V&A Photography Workshop and Exhibit

September saw a photography workshop collaboration with participants from Freedom from Torture. This charity supports people who have been through immeasurable suffering as victims of torture. It was amazing to see this group of people come together and support each other, learning new skills. A couple of weeks later the images these individuals had produced were proudly exhibited at the V & A museum. Was wonderful to see these smiling faces launching their own exhibit!

 

 

 

Edible Utopia

We took part in an absolutely fascinating workshop at Somerset House. So weird and wonderful and something completely different for our participants. Experimenting with different effects, they produced some stunning images of fungus. They just loved working on these technical aspects, capturing the astonishing forms of the mushrooms! We were thrilled that the images were used by Somerset House projected onto the wall of ‘The Deadhouse’ as part of World Fungus Day!

Jump Up!

We got together again with our friends at Youth Club Social, checking out their latest exhibition ‘Jump Up’ celebrating 50 years of Notting Hill Carnival. After being inspired by the amazing photography on display, our participants got creative designing their own Carnival backdrops!

 

 

 

 

One Festival of Homelessness Arts

This was our second year being involved in this incredible event founded and directed by our great friend the Artist David Tovey. A celebration of the works of art, in so many forms, created by artists who have or are experiencing homelessness. We had the privilege of exhibiting images from our photography workshops ‘Portraits and Potential’. This workshops involved participants from YMCA Walthamstow who had their images captured by Accumulate Tutor and visual artist Othello De Souza Hartley. Afterwards we gathered together to discuss what each person saw in their own portrait and then reflect & share their hopes for the future. Inspiring.

 

 

House of St Barnabas Art Hang

We were beyond delighted to see the work of the Accumulate Zine DECAY 3, produced back in the summer, exhibited on a large scale at the House of St Baranabas in Soho. Such a proud moment so see our stunning pieces exhibited in this incredible setting.

 

 

 

Latest Workshops

As the dark nights drew in, we worked with a new group from Broadwater Lodge. A hostel for families in North London. It was just wonderful to see this group have fun with creativity and learn new skills. We also rounded off the year with workshops with participants from YMCA North London and Evolve in Stockwell who were perfecting their technical skills.

 

 

Alexandra Palace

As a final creative project of 2018 we worked together with artist Cristina Otto on the incredible project at Alexandra Palace. This installation is on display in the new East Wing at the palace and it really is quite a sight!

 

 

 

Student Successes

We are beyond proud to see 2017 Scholarship winner continue his creative education, enrolling on the BA Advertising and Brand Design course at Ravensbourne University! Luke said “Thank you for all this and the opportunity. I am nervous as hell but very excited to start a new life.”

2018 student Nisha Zala was also accepted in the Access to Fashion course at Morley College. We are so excited for you Nisha!

 

 

 

 

 

Hello 2019!

2019 is already shaping up to be an exciting year for Accumulate…….thank you so much for following along, your support means the world to us.

 

 

 

 

Accumulate Summer 2018

Wow, what a Summer we have had! As Autumn approaches, it’s great to reflect on what has been a really exciting time for our project with so much more to come!

We won an award!

June saw Accumulate highly commended by the Festival of Learning. This organisation celebrates the benefits of learning and the achievements of adults who have used learning to transform their lives. It was such a proud moment to see one of our 2017 scholarship winners; Jay collect this award. It was presented by Professor Linda Drew, Director and CEO of Ravensbourne University.

Creative Leaders 50

Following this, we were simply over the moon to see our inspiring founder and Director Marice Cumber named in Creative Review’s ‘Creative Leaders 50’. Recognition of people driving change in the creative industries and incredibly well deserved. Many congrats Marice!

Process at Somerset House

In July, we took part in ‘Process’ a two day festival of independent media & a zine fair held at Somerset House in Central London. This was a great platform for us to promote the work of Accumulate and our latest zine ‘Decay.’

 

This zine is the result of a collaboration between House of St Barnabas, Accumulate and Ravensbourne University. This collection of words, images and random thoughts by people affected by homelessness is now in its third issue. It is a really great showcase for the power of creativity, with organisations and individuals working together to form their own creative community. Click here to buy your own copy of Decay 3 and help us support more people affected by homelessness find empowerment through creativity.

The Great Fete

In August we took part in the Great Fete at Alexandra Palace in North London. Participants from hostels all over London came together to take part in this workshop. They took portraits using a polaroid camera of those attending the event. The images were then all linked together to create a ‘Palace Quilt’. This was such a great project to work on, bringing different parts of the community together to craft, share skills and make something collectively. The finished piece was then displayed by the festival.

Scholarship Winners Enrol!

As the end of August came, we were so proud to see the happy smiling faces of our 2018 scholarship winners as they enrolled at University. They will be studying on the Access to HE Diploma course in Design and Digital Media at Ravensbourne University.  This has all been made possible by our amazing sponsors Brickworks London, Straight Forward Design and Ravensbourne University. Exciting times are certainly ahead, and we are so happy to have you follow our journey with us.

 

 

Displacement - The Accumulate 2018 Exhibition

The Accumulate Exhibition 2018

The Accumulate 2018 exhibition opens at The Guardian building at 90 York Way, Kings Cross, London in just 5 days time. This year, we have 21 people, from 6 hostels, who completed the 15 week Accumulate photography course, learnt new skills and made new friends. The theme of this year’s exhibition is Displacement, and on the course we visited places and exhibitions around London that related or drew influence from the theme, such as Peckham, Dalston and Shoreditch and the Basquiet exhibition at The Barbican.

Displacement - The Accumulate 2018 Exhibition

Displacement – The Accumulate 2018 Exhibition

As ever, the build up to the exhibition is full of anticipation and expectation. Accumulate participants have recently put themselves through the task of applying for a scholarship to continue their creative education and study on the Access to HE Diploma in Design and Digital Media at Ravensbourne. This year, three scholarships are up for grabs and these will be announced and awarded at the Displacement Exhibition Private View on 17th May. It is a life changing opportunity for those that are successful and selected for a scholarship. Our thanks go to Brickworks London, the Ethical Estate Agency, Straight Forward Design Company and Ruth Keetch, a Ravensbourne governor, for supporting and funding these scholarships.

The Accumulate exhibition is not just about displaying the photographs taken by the Accumulate participants. It has a bigger role to play – it showcases the talents of a group of people that may feel marginalised and excluded from the mainstream and it becomes an educational tool of how much talent exists that is under utilised and needs to be nurtured and supported. Most of all, on the exhibition private view evening the Accumulate participants celebrate their achievements, learning and developments and others celebrate with them and admire their work. All of this is part of the positive learning journey that helps people to believe in themselves, their potential and ability to self progress onto a better place in life.

All of the photographs in the Accumulate Displacement exhibition are for sale, with profits split between the participants, so that they can earn money from their creativity, and Accumulate so that it can continue its services and provide more creative workshops to people affected by homelessness. It is possible to purchase the Accumulate exhibition 2018 photographs from our online shop here 

 

The Accumulate group at the ceramics workshop

The Accumulate group tries out yoga and ceramics.

The Accumulate group tried out yoga and ceramics this year. Both of these are new activities for the group, and the participants left these both wanting more – which is always a good sign!

We now have a community of learning and this is something we want to build on as the project continues and grows. The Accumulate participants now greet and high five each other and are linked through their creativity and their talents, they are empowered, positive and are ready to take on new challenges. And that’s what Accumulate is all about, and that is success for us and for the participants.

The Accumulate group at the ceramics workshop

The Accumulate group at the ceramics workshop

Olive, a participant, emailed in after the Accumulate ceramics workshops and said “I felt so confident in myself when you told me I’m doing well and showing me new task and how to make things easier  for me” and here she is, very proud, with the plate and bowl that she made.

Olive with the bowl and plate that she made

Olive with the bowl and plate that she made

Thank you to our new partners for these activities – Level Six Yoga at Peckham Levels and the learning team at The Victoria and Albert Museum.

We are now starting to get ready for the Accumulate photography exhibition. Once again we will be having the exhibition at The Guardian building in Kings Cross. Our thanks are due to them for their continued support. The theme of the exhibition is Displacement and at the private view on May 17th we will also be awarding three scholarships for selected Accumulate participants to be able to study on the Access to HE course in Digital Media and Design at Ravensbourne. Please do email info (at) accumulate.org.uk if you would like to attend the private view and are not already on our mailing list.

Accumulate DECAY at The London Art Fair private view

Accumulate starts 2018 full of creativity!

Creativity is at the core of Accumulate, and the start of 2018 has certainly lived up to this.

We started off with the “DECAY at The London Art Fair” exhibition where we showcased the creativity of the 11 participants from Evolve Housing in Stockwell who participated in the Accumulate magazine project last year.

DECAY at The London Art Fair Invitation

DECAY at The London Art Fair Invitation

To say that the DECAY exhibition private view was busy would be an understatement! Thank you to everyone who came along, bought artwork and were so positive about what Accumulate does and how it helps young people who are homeless through creativity.

Accumulate DECAY at The London Art Fair private view

Accumulate DECAY at The London Art Fair private view

But the best part of all was receiving this feedback from a care leaver who visited the exhibition.

“I had such a great time at this event! The painting were amazing because I could feel what the young people have been through as I am a young person living in a hostel too.
I would be more than happy to volunteer and help as much as I can, because I think that by volunteering it’s the best way to help people.”
We have now started the Accumulate photography project, this year we are working with 7 hostel groups and this year we will collaborate with Somerset House, The Barbican, Tate Modern, Autograph ABP, Victoria and Albert Museum and The Photographers Gallery to deliver our workshops. Every year something wonderful happens on this project and this year, it is wonderful to see last year’s Accumulate graduates and scholarship winners supporting and helping this year’s participants.
Jay, an Accumulate graduate, supports Anushan

Jay, an Accumulate graduate, supports Anushan

Recently we ran a series of zine workshops with The House of St Barnabas (HOSB). HOSB is a private members club in Soho, which is actually also a charity that trains people affected by homelessness with hospitality and catering skills so that they can gain employment and enter the industry. The Accumulate workshops focused on writing, drawing and photography and the content will be used for the next issue of the Accumulate DECAY zine.  This Accumulate project is a real creative collaboration as the workshops were attended by graduates of the HOSB Employment Academy, staff and members, the content will be worked on by 80 students from the graphic design course at Ravensbourne, and the amazing Creative Conscience folk are supporting this project. Everyone is getting involved, getting creative and will be full of fulfilment and creative contentment.

Harvey's hands after the Accumulate workshop at HOSB

Harvey’s hands after the Accumulate workshop at HOSB

 

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!!