MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – 2019 – PART I

Not really knowing how to start this blog post … so I am just going to welcome you and say “HAPPY BANK HOLIDAY”!

 

Firstly, the decision to write a periodical culture reviews in Hull was a big mistake. Four months have passed very quickly and despite having a very mellow involvement with culture and the city, a lot has happened.

2019 started with a positive outlook on upcoming life and work events and I really didn’t want to skip the commitment to the city and its culture/arts scene. I gave myself a relaxed task to share periodical cultural experiences, making it less of a chore.
And here I am  – slightly regretful, unsure and of course still happy to have an archive of four months worth of culture.

To be able to deliver this, I really need to travel back in time.

January ’19

The month started with general wonders around local areas and quick visit to Humber Street Gallery Place to Place by Liverpool Biennial.

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From what I remember – it was a simple, minimalist experience that didn’t really had a wow factor. But I appreciated the tones, simplicity and shapes.

The thing about Hull, camera and me is that in my head I have various visions of specific locations and potential images. So I sometimes plan a random journey, hoping to discover something unseen or not photographed previously.
The next selection is one of those. I wanted to travel down to one of my favourite streets in Hull Boulevard for the mural that has been there for a while.
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Moments before I drove past Hull Marina and recorded the beautiful morning light – this pretty much sums up my January.

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February ’19

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February was a busy month and I remember being surprised by the workload.
Most of my culture consisted of work duties and getting ready for an Artist Takeover #4 exhibition in at Queens House Showcase
Full insight here: ARTIST TAKEOVER #4 @QUEENS HOUSE SHOWCASE

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During the exhibition I held various activities – photo booth, talk about my HOME GLORY series and COME AS YOU ARE photo project.

Free photo booth was a lovely way how to invite people into the gallery and do what I do best – take a photograph.

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The talk about my HOME GLORY series was a an interesting experience to have – it turned out to be an intimate talk with small group of people about my heritage, photographic journey and stories I am trying to tell.  I didn’t need crowds to feel the  support and I am thankful to those who came.

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COME AS YOU ARE was a thing I wanted to do for a while and I was lucky to get a small platform where to test out the idea.
I asked a question to people – what do you carry with you every day and what role does that “thing” play in your life. It all came from the question of why I photograph Latvia and the mundane everyday whilst I am there, family and country.

Again – the attendance was mild, but I felt very lucky to see the people who came. Quality over quantity.

Regards culture two things happened that month in Hull. Annual Ferens Open Exhibition and The Knife Angel in Queens Gardens.

This year I missed the deadline to apply, but it happened for a reason. I didn’t feel like there was anything to exhibit and previous year proved that if you don’t feel it in your gut, don’t submit.

However, to visit the exhibition was a pleasure.
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The Knife Angel left me slightly speechless and amazed. The travelling National Monument against Violence and Aggression gathered people from all over the region and in a way united us once more. It felt like short period of time, but it definitely left a mark in 2019.

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March ’19

By mid March my life was starting to take a bitter turn and my health got in the way of everything. There was a fantastic opportunity to photograph the last Heads Up Festival, Creative ENRG came to a closure and I was part of the Creative Juice event at C4DI.
Plus I went to a very random gig at Union Mashup and stumbled across an exhibition by Lauren Saunders, Rebbeca Addinell and Sinitta Beadle at Hull Central Library.

Creative Juice @C4DI was a farewell event to the amazing journey we all had with Creative ENRG – there was a book launch, great food and very interesting programme all thanks to brilliant event organisation by Eskimosoup

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Being at the event reminded me of the friendships made and the amazing photo opportunities I created for myself by getting involved with the Creative ENRG

Heads Up Festival 2019 was so special this year, it was my third and probably the last as it was announced to take a break for a bit.

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THE PAPER CINEMAS MACBETH

Read a full review here: HEADS UP FESTIVAL 2019

LITTORAL VISTAS @HULL CENTRAL LIBRARY was an accidental discovery whilst in the library for the festival.

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The exhibition space at the library is very well lit and clean from distractions. And the work suited the space well [or the other way round]. I am pleased that Lauren Saunders is getting out there and pursuing her goals.

Make Noise Birthday Bash @Union Mash Up was a very random visit thanks to my friend Oliver. Make Noise Collective describe themselves as “Hull gal collective, working to improve safety at gigs and visibility for women in the local scene”

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One girl really did stand out – Jodie Langford with her spoken word performances. The ultimate highlight of the night.

April ’19

April brought Bankside Gallery event at the Preston Road derelict housing estate, Alec Gill’s Hessle Roaders at Hull Truck and new art space in Hull – Prospect Gallery [it is very new and at the moment the gallery don’t have any online presence].

Bankside Gallery  was a pleasure to visit despite the weather and my moody mood. A lot of new works created in a very unique gallery.

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Hessle Roaders by Alec Gill has been an ongoing journey for many people in past year or so and Alec has made sure that his work don’t just sit in the shelves in folders hidden away. Hull Truck hosted another extension to the work and I as promised to Alec I went to see it.

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I first heard of Prospect Gallery was at the Queens House Showcase at one of the events. It was mentioned and it soon became the place to visit in my [imaginary] list.

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I also got an amazing offer to have my portrait drawn and I agreed. Since then it happened twice and it as an experience to experience. It is a strange task to sit and find a point of interest that becomes your world for an hour or so. And the end result gives you a sight that you never see yourself.

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The space has got a lot of potential and it could become one of the hot spots to visit in Hull.

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In between everything I also was invited to photograph an opening at Humber Street Gallery for A TITTLE-TATTLE TELL-A-TALE-HEART by Athena Papadopoulos and caught a snippet of the CUT.

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CUT  is a a residency project exploring themes of social expression and the acts of self-care centred around their practice of hairdressing. The project takes form of a sculptural installation and events programme where haircuts and client interviews are gathered to create sound and sculptural artworks.

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There was more adventures and exciting work things throughout the four months, but I think I have covered the highlights. And learned a lesson to be more consistent. And discovered that Hull is still breathing culture.

 

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 49

HOW CLOSE ARE WE UNTIL FINISH LINE FOR 2017, HUH?

THIS WEEK WAS A BIT OF A STRUGGLE AS I WAS RETURNING FROM SUNNY HOLIDAY MID-WEEK AND CATCHING UP WITH WORK.

AT LEAST THE WEEK WAS NOT ONE OF THOSE WHERE I HAD TO SCRAP FOR CULTURE, BECAUSE THERE WAS QUITE A FEW THINGS GOING ON. WEEKEND DELIVERED THE STUNNING FLOE: A CELEBRATION OF THE DEEP AND THE BEAUTY OF SEA.

First however I did some day time catching up with culture. In town an interesting taxi appeared right in time for my culture wonders, which  brightened up my morning.

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My main mission was to visit Hull Streetlife Museum for Lady Chesterfield’s sleigh.

Little that I knew that I’ve seen it before, its been there for ages and Hull 17 was just reminding us of the existing exhibits in Hull. This unique artefact from Hull City Council’s collection is believed to be of Russian origin, dating back to 1810. The front of the passenger’s carriage is painted silver and gold and is shaped like a mythical unicorn.

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And then there was the WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE robots in the gardens.

I’ve heard some feedback from other Hull patriots, culture seekers that it is not as great as expected, but I am leaving it for this week to find out my own thoughts.

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On Sunday, despite my mild hangover and workload, I visited the FLOE: A CELEBRATION OF THE DEEP AND THE BEAUTY OF SEA.

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I had high expectations, considering how amazing the first week of this year kicked off with sound/light installations Made in Hull.

It was nearly as good as Made in Hull, there was little something missing, but I can’t point out what.

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The cold and almost snow added that little bit of magic to the experience.

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Everything is a little celebratory and festive, offices lit up, families gathering – just lovely.

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I am hoping for some more culture this week, something exciting, festive, colourful and maybe magic, but the reality might hit me when the workload is too much.

Desperate to have the second visit to LIMITLESS
It closes on the 13th December and I am really hoping I can get in. The place promised creative change in space and after all the workshops, the change could be impressive.

Fingers crossed.

Happy culture!

 

 

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 44

HELLO.

INTERESTING, TOUGH AND FULL OF THINGS THIS WEEK.

FIRST OF ALL – BIG SHOUT OUT TO HULL COMEDY FESTIVAL 2017 AS THIS WEEK IT KICKED OFF WITH A BANG – ANNA MORRIS: THE BITCHELORS AND THE NOT SO LATE NIGHT SHOW WITH ROSS AND JOSH. 

+ A LITTLE PEAK IN TO A SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE @JUBILEE CHURCH

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I HAVE THE HONOURS TO BE PART OF THE FESTIVAL AND CALL MYSELF THE OFFICIAL PHOTOGRAPHER.

SECOND – I HAD A BIT OF CULTURE AS WELL AS COMEDY:

TURNER & THE WHALE

Turner & The Whale was no photographs kind of an exhibition, but I thought I’ll let you know that I was there and one of the frames including a famous painting is stunning to look at. Cheers!

ELEPHANTS IN THE ROOM

These sculptures are there to remind of and tackle the social inequality of homelessness with The Neil Hudgell Trust and artist Laurence Vallieres.

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HULL, PORTRAIT OF A CITY: OLIVIA ARTHUR AND MARTIN PARR – HUMBER STREET GALLERY

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My third time seeing Martin Parr’s exhibition and I brought this beauty with me. I think we together played a little game of trying to recognise locations of the places, whereas on my own I only appreciate the beauty of photographs. Nice change not to be overly obsessed with Martin Parr.

Speaking of which – Martin Parr’s Colouring Book is out and there are a fantastic opportunity to send in the coloured pages and win one of his prints – signed. WOW.

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THE SIXTEEN THOUSAND – C4DI

Came back for one last shot of the whole thing and two kiddies pointing at me, because I thought they were really cute trying to find their brick in those sixteen thousand others. _Z1A1020WEEK44 b

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+ stroll round Humber Street and a little unsolved KINGSTON ART GROUP GALLERY AND BOBBY BEASLEY’S PHOTOGRAPHIC EXHIBITION WAS NOT OPEN AND NOT THERE :(

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I AM STARTING TO REALISE THAT THERE IS LESS THAN TWO MONTHS LEFT OF THIS CULTURE, WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO NEXT YEAR?

PLENTY TO SEE AND DO THIS WEEK, SO SEE HOW I CAN FIT CULTURE IN THE COMEDY AND OTHER WAY ROUND.

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 43

Week 43 of photo challenging myself with Hull17 has been a bit of a weeeirrrd one. I was feeling snoozy, poorly and busy all week and the culture just seemed to slip through my hands. However – I did see The Sixteen Thousand at C4DI, PRACTICE IN PROGRESS at Queens House Showcase run by CreativeENRG and 1% of the current HIP PHOTOGRAPHY FESTIVAL at Princess Quay.
And then on Saturday – my snooziest day of the week I woke up to realise that I need to get some fresh air and had a stroll through Humber Street just before it gets drunk and celebratory.

The Sixteen Thousand was a planned trip to C4DI.

_Z1A0180WEEK 43 bI was one of the first ones there and it felt like the little clay brick exhibit is undergoing some work processes. The workman boots near the entrance where suggesting so.

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It turned out that someone from a building company was there to measure and asses each individual brick for a little future monument.

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The Sixteen Thousand is incredible collection of little imprints of the new generation. My favourite bricks are the wonky ones. Nothing is perfect in this remarkable world so to see the little bricks not being manufactured perfect makes more sense out of this world.

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Last week I really wanted to see the HIP PHOTOGRAPHY FESTIVAL in full. But I was time pressure so I just passed by and looked at small part of the festival located on the ground floor of Princess Quay.

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On Thursday I had a meeting at the Queens House Showcase  and I wanted to take an advantage of it and see the new PRACTICE IN PROGRESS exhibition. It hosts two artists, Both graduates of Hull School of Art & Design – Matt Hopper and Adam John Wilson.

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The artwork speaks in detail, precision and I really wanted to chat with artists to know more about their work. But one of the artists was not present, the other one was busy, so I hope to return there at some point before it ends on the 10th November and have a chat with the artists.

I was not sure about the UNDEAD BOD thing, I had so many questions of why, how, when and where, but again, I need to hear from the artist before make any judgements.
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By Saturday I was drained and really wanting to be in bed. I didn’t expect any more culture, but there was a point when I had to have some fresh air. And I rarely have the opportunity to see Humber Street on the night time[when it or I am sober], so I happily brought a camera.
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Shop windows/gallery windows, bars, restaurants are so different when the sun settles and I was feeling that little bit privileged to be able to see all this and call it my city.

So yeah medium-excited culture week last week, but the madness will begin this Thursday when the Hull Comedy Festival celebrates its 10th anniversary. I am the official photographer third year running and I am well excited to see all the acts – old, new, famous, local. EXCITEEEED.
Hopefully I will have time this week to share some long lost photographs from the last comedy gig I photographed ages ago – before the madness begins.

Happy culture, people!!!!

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 41

HAPPY CULTURE WEEK 41

Week 41 – oh mighty cow – has been culture overload with highlights, lowlights and random discoveries. Last week was probably one of the most cultural in terms of variety. So the usual writing and reflecting is a danger to turn this photo based blog into a book.
Therefore sweet and short <3

Most of the weeks wonders are spontaneously found on the route that was planned ahead. Turner Prize at Ferens Art Gallery is the only culture visit I properly predicted to appear on this weeks photo challenge.

On Monday I visited HSAD and Brodrick Gallery that currently is hosting an exhibition for architecture. What a lovely place, with sweet memories and appreciativeness.

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It is hard to see the space as an exhibition space, it is more about learning of being an artist exhibiting in whatever way is your way. The space is surrounded by that feeling of first steps and unless spectacular exhibition held, I am not feeling it.

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Same day the route home involved passing POST OFFICE and I found the treasures of Freedom Festival 2017 [which by the way will be on the blog at some point, just because it is over a month ago since it took place].

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DAY TWO ROUTE: SPRING BANK – HULL FAIR/WALTON STREET – HULL EYE HOSPITAL AKA HULL ROYAL – GOODWIN DEVELOPMENT TRUST BUILDING ANLABY ROAD – PARAGON STATION – HULL 17 POD

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NOTE TO THE LAST IMAGE: First thing I asked the van driver was if he’s sober. Because his eyes, body language stated otherwise. He confirmed that he is sober.
Overall, what an experience walking through Hull Fair 2017 when everyone is starting to wake up.
There is a life behind the rides, a family business, a family. Walk through the West Park with all the mobile homes parked closely to each other is something to experience.
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HULL EYE HOSPITAL AND A SIGHT TO BEHOLD

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GOODWIN TRUST DEVELOPMENT BUILDING COVERED WITH HEADSCARF REVOLUTIONARIES MURAL 

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HULL PARAGON INTERCHANGEFLY TO FREEDOM

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and bits….

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In between I went down to the HULL 17 POD to have a chat with the volunteers [as you do] and soak up more info, make sure I am on track with the culture and of course aware of upcoming wonderful things.

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TURNER PRIZE

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On Sunday I visited the TURNER PRIZE for the second time. And there will be a third time for definite. It feels like the exhibition and the honours of having it in Hull is worth three trips and actually a necessity.

First time round I was focused on people engaging with the art, which is the fun part, but I felt the need to see it with my own naked eyes. Second time I was getting involved and got to know the artists via videos. Third time will be for the films and last questions.

 

THIS WAS THE FULL STOP FOR THE WEEK. BUT THEN SOMETHING HAPPENED.

The following story is true and quite sad. Thursday night around 6:20 PM whilst at work duties I accidentally opened INSTAGRAM and a fellow photographer was sharing a love story between him and world famous, admired MARTIN PARR [AHA, YES MARTIN PARR HIMSELF AT THE HUMBER STREET GALLERY]. MY HEART STOPPED FOR A FEW SECONDS. AND THEN IT CLICKED – HIS SERIES PORTRAIT OF A CITY THAT I CLEARLY KNEW ABOUT HAVE BEEN EXHIBITED AND HE IS AT THE OPENING NIGHT. AND I WAS CRYING INSIDE OUT.
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LONG STORY SHORT – I FUCKED UP. The thought that I could’ve seen him in person, shook his hand and told him he has shaped my photographers being and that I am grateful for his work and its existence. Plus other million compliments, few sick belly butterflies and the beautiful photographs he has taken in Hull.
I am a believer that things happen for a reason, but this one is just stupid and I can’t see a reason. By the time I arrived, he was gone. GONE.

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Every single photograph is the beauty of Martin Parr and his talent, he’s undeniable style of capturing stills that are more alive than a breathing human being. Thank you for coming to Hull, the Hull is now on the Martin Parr’s map and I hope there will be a book.

The exhibition is strongly suggestive, I will definitely be going back again and again.

P.S. The other w/f photographer Olivia Arthur is part of it too, just haven’t seen that yet.

SULKING AND WONDERING HOW MY LIFE HAS GOT SO SAD, I wandered to the THE SIXTEEN THOUSAND at the C4DI BLOCK C

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HERE IS MY STORY MY WEEK MY CULTURE. THIS WEEK SHOULD BE THE SAME – CULTURE BURSTING HAPPY ENDING PHOTO CHALLENGING. HAPPY CULTURE

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 34

I am just going to pretend that it is Monday, although clearly I have broken the routine FIRST TIME IN 34 WEEKS by doing this on Tuesday.
My excuse – Bank Holiday and unexpected health issues.

 

The week was something between a recovery and back to work mode… so I packed in dose of culture in one day, predicting that no other days will be suitable.

I had a plan:
TIGER RAGS – THE FABRIC OF HULL CITY AFC

BLEACHED BY TANIA KOVATS

THE DINOSAUR EXPERIENCE HULL @DINOSTAR

THE HOUSE OF KINGS AND QUEENS

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When heading to the TIGER RAGS – THE FABRIC OF HULL CITY AFC display, I was pretty clueless that it will be about the famous Hull City. Which easily proves that I am not in the game at all.

For me the display perhaps didn’t mean the same as it would to true fans and believers, but I felt a bit of a legacy when entering a room. There was a family that looked at the whole history of the Hull City kits and memorabilia, watched the video about the players and I recognised the importance of the little exhibition in the most bizarre place.

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BLEACHED BY TANIA KOVATS as part of the day came on my way to Humber Street. The building, its location and potential to amaze me was present when approaching.

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Without making things up – genuinely one of my favourite culture visits in the recent weeks. There is no photo proof, but I had two guys helping me to soak the culture, we talked and chit-chatted, criticized and praised the work of Tania Kovats. Complete strangers, but the culture brought us together for those 15 important minutes. And the story behind their visit – old friends, both retired, now living in different areas, come together to see the culture and have a lunch/brunch/coffee/pint every now and then. How cool is that? This is why this year has changed things around, this is why everyone can find something beneficial about Hull 2017.

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Sculptures exploring the beauty of coral and its fragile position in the world’s ecosystem, was something that we evaluated as potentially upsetting – if beneath the white coat was real coral, we could not accept the sacrifices made to create the art.
Off course it turned out that The Deep was able to save a large quantity of modal (artificial) coral after refurbishment for Tania to work with, so the artist used representation to raise awareness of what could potentially happen with the corals if the humans don’t start to think environmentally friendly.

It remains stunning sculpture with exceptional amount of fine detail that I had the pleasure to view.

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The sculptures Ocean Bowls are just as stunning as the corals. And mystery at first glanceI thought that each metal piece has been saved from a different ocean and we see the different effects that it had created. But NO, under each piece was a great idea hidden for us to find…

Each piece has been cut out as Planet Earth, metal part being ocean and cut outs being land. So if pieced together it will create a planet that we know so far.

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As before – it was so interesting to puzzle this mystery with strangers that become your friends for the moment and find Great Britain, Philippines, Baltics or Mexico.

There was a third art display – a bit of paint on paper that we called to be a fish planet – because so many things are to do with water, sea, river.

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After the amazing experience I walked into almost electric skyline overlooking Hull Town and was in a good mood – being busy even with photo-jobs can sometimes be difficult, because there is no real freedom. However the culture photo challenge gives me the freedom, so something to celebrate.

And then it was spoiled – by Dinostar – The Dinosaur Experience Hull.
I am really sorry, but I was very shocked when I noticed the price for entry -not a symbolic £1 but £3 for an adult. And to make it worse, finishing my tour I felt like that was my worst £3 spent for an entry to culture.
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It turned to be funny – this place has always been on my sight, interested of what is hidden inside the building. Every time I walked past there, it was closed, so to finally get in should’ve made my day.
The whole thing is ridiculously outdated and 90’s entertainment. Even for children in our generation this must feel like a joke.
But then – I have seen some spectacular exhibitions and art spaces, so the stacks are high.

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I came out with my hands stamped with blurred dinosaurs and a conclusion – Dinostar need to apply for a funding and re-do the place, because the idea behind it is great and keeps the world of the mystery and wonderful alive for the kids.

Whilst heading to THE HOUSE OF KINGS AND QUEENS I bumped into something really cool – Building Block Hack!

The workshop run by artist and FORMCard founder Peter Marigold is part of the States Of Play Workshops – the incredible exhibition that I visited few weeks ago [see the photos here: MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 29]

In short – kids and grownups playing with Lego’s and bits of melted plastic creating monsters, hero’s, unicorns and random bits.

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The last one of the day was THE HOUSE OF KINGS AND QUEENS.

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First impression – stunning display and beautiful photographs covering a content that surprisingly remains taboo amongst society [noticed that when hanging about near the entrance – parents by accident brought kids thinking that it is the States Of Play exhibition and rushed out as soon as realised that the story behind the heartfelt photographs is transgender].

But I loved it. I truly did. First of all  the photographer Lee Price has done an amazing job with storytelling through photographs, curating the notes underneath the photographs. Secondly – the context is easy to relate to. You don’t have to be transgender or gay to not feel free in today’s world. There are so many other reasons why people feel like that. I found it touching and really encourages me to be more open mined.

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Also seeing this exhibition I really need to find out more about Sierra Leone and its relationship with Hull. It has popped up before in my culture wonders, or event at Uni. Now it is time to find out more, so a little homework for coming weeks.

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This exhibition is 10/10. Thank you for the viewing and observing experience.

 

 

THIS WEEK IS THE FREEDOM FESTIVAL 10th ANNIVERSARY AND I AM SO EXCITED TO WORK WITH FREEDOM FESTIVAL THIS YEAR.

I might have a bit of none Freedom Festival culture for you – THE HESSLE ROADERS

but we’ll see.

HAPPY CULTURE PEOPLE

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 27

WELCOME TO THE 27th WEEK OF HULL CITY OF CULTURE

I CANNOT BELIEVE THAT I HAVE MANAGED TO BE CONSISTENT FOR 27 WEEKS IN A ROW. AFTER THE FIRST WEEK AND THE SPECTACULAR OPENING FOR MADE IN HULL I TOOK ON THIS CHALLENGE NOT THINKING MUCH ABOUT ITS IMPACT ON MY LIFE.

I AM THANKFUL TO HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY AND FREEDOM TO TAKE PHOTOS OF 2017 IN HULL. YAAY.

This week I had strict plan. And despite some fall backs, I have gone through the plan and it feels GOOD.

HIGHLIGHTS:

AND LITTLE EXTRA VISIT TO A VERY CULTURAL TWO GINGERS COFFEE SHOP

I was very excited for the PAPER CITY for so many good reasons – I absolutely love G.F Smith paper and products, I love the feel, look and smell of paper in general and the locations are the culture hot spots that are pleasure to visit.
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“Ten days celebrating colour and the freedom to play – installations by some of the most exciting creative minds from the worlds of contemporary art, design and architecture – using the specialist coloured paper, Colorplan, from Hull company G . F Smith.

The creatives participating in Paper City are Adam HollowayMax LambLazerian, Made ThoughtJacqui PonceletJoanna Sands,  Bethan Laura Wood and Richard Woods, all of whom have been invited to play with the most fundamental creative material – paper.”

Source: Hull City Of Culture 2017

 

_Z1A1089WEEK27 b_Z1A1084WEEK27 b_Z1A1080WEEK27 bPAPER CITY MAX LAMB 35,000 gsm

I am so glad that such large scale company as G.F Smith share their passion for paper and we can appreciate the amazing produce they create.

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The artwork is pretty spectacular and the space collaborates with its scale. Amazing.

_Z1A1107WEEK27 bPAPER CITY LAZERIAN LOCAL FISH

The paper fish by Lazerian was the most talked about so was the main point of interest. As spectacular as it was, I was more fascinated and amused by the artist and his little workshop van in the same space.

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I watched him for a couple of minutes and could not resist to become his ONE POUND FISH CUSTOMER.
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Plus there is no chance I can get photos of him without buying something, that would be way rude.
I got a full set of paper fish&chips in the box, plus a double sided fish cut out artwork….

PAPER CITY LAZERIAN LOCAL FISH FISH N CHIP FOLDER

I promised him not to discuss the price of my delights in the blog, so cccsssssstt, but it was well worth every penny.

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He really reminded me of a very silly Zach Galifianakis, the American actor from Hangover and other films. As he is artist, his personality is a bit of a mystery, character overload and guessing game, I really really enjoyed my five minutes with him.

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C4DI hosted the artwork of  Adam Holloway and Joanna Sands.

It was about the space, size and the feel of it [without touching].

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PAPER HEAVEN IN THE CITY.
COLOURFUL | WONDERFUL | BEAUTIFUL MADNESS.

 

SATURDAY MORNING STARTED WITH A CHURCH [ST. JOHNS BAPTIST CHURCH]. DRESSED INCREDIBLY INAPPROPRIATE BUT KEEN TO SEE THE HULL FISHING HERITAGE ART EXHIBITION WAS WAY TOO IMPORTANT.

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The exhibition was as wonderful as the people working in the church [coffee and tea, biscuits and warm welcomes]. The lady from church told me that as soon as the community recognized the opportunity to share their story, they collected the art and people connected to the such an important and big part of Hull, once upon a time.

It was touching to see the Lord Landline building at St. Andrews Dock as it was many years ago. I was also hearing stories from people who remember to be it just like that back in the day and how they feel about the loss of industry.

 

 

On Thursday I was in the new Two Gingers Coffee Shop for a quick meet up and OH MIGHTY DUCK. COFFEE TO DIE FOR AND CUTE LIL’ INTERIOR THOUGHT THROUGH IN EVERY INCH. LOVED IT.

TWO GINGERS COFFEE SHOP HULL

One of the “two gingers” was there on the day and he is as lovely as ever, pleasure to have some coffee time there. The coffee to die for part definitely applies to one of the most expensive coffee beans ever bought, but smell [and taste] wonderful. So again – forth it.

Good to see other parts of the city changing and adding good places to be on the list.

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THE WEEK OF THE CULTURE JOYS HAS ENDED SUCCESSFULLY. WEEK 28th IS A MYSTERY JET, AS I AM PRE-HOLIDAY PANICKING AND WORKING A LOT THIS WEEK.

DEFINITELY WILL KEEP SOMETHING UNDER MY SLEEVE FOR THE TWO WEEKS AWAY FROM HULL.

HAVE A GREAT WEEK  AND GET OUT FOR SOME DOSE OF CULTURE!!!!!

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 25

LIKE EVERY WEEK FOR THE PAST 25 WEEKS THIS YEAR I AM SAT DOWN ON A MONDAY, REFLECTING ON THE CULTURE IN HULL.

This week has thought me a lesson to plan ahead. And try to stick to a plan. On Friday I literally failed to go out and photograph and I was annoyed with myself as never before.

I know that I can’t get to everything that Hull City Of Culture 2017 has to offer, but I have to take the advantage of the freedom when it comes to choosing where to go and what to see/photograph.

Thursday I was [first fail of planning] supposed to photograph the (In)visible Dancing down Jameson Street. I was super excited for it, but to my disappointment it was not on until the next day.

Oh, well… so to make sure I didn’t drag my kit in town for nothing I captured the Water Fountains in Queen Victoria Square in the early hours with the steam n stuff.

Hull Queen Victoria Square Water Fountains mum and daughter

The Fountains is one of those photo-popular destinations and I am not tempted too much, but it feels quite special and privileged to be there when it gets the steam clean.

Hull Queen Victoria Square Fountains SteamHull Queen Victoria Square Fountains Steam Women walking past

 

Saturday was the WORM FESTIVAL visit day [the festival spread across three days] in Humber Street Gallery.  I was lightly hangover [happens to me sometimes], so I decided that a long walk in Humber Street through Old Town will heal me.

First was the newly painted Drypool Bridge. The design is celebrating the work of John Venn – a 19th century mathematician and philosopher born in the Drypool ward.

Drypool Bridge Hull 2017

Then I followed the route and strolled through Street Life Museum grounds.

Streetlife Museum Hull people feetStreetlife Museum Hull garden

Hull Streetlife Museum people watching fish in the pond

And surprise, surprise – there was something going on. Maritime Memories Machine tour arrived in Hull to collect stories about sea – we like our waters don’t we?

Maritime Memories Machine Van

I met two lovely people from London, and they gave me a little tour around the Ice Cream Van without any ice cream that was full of secret jars and pots, items and collections.

Maritime Memories Machine inside the Van

They showed off their fantastic hats and cute lil’ seagull.

Maritime Memories Machine in Hull Seagull wearing scuba diving glassesMaritime Memories Machine view from the window inside the van

Maritime Memories Machine Tour in Hull handmade hat with seashells and stuff

Maritime Memories Machine Tour in Hull member of staff holding a very special handmade sea themed hat

It was very interesting indeed, it was like a tiny world squeezed in few square meters.
Maritime Memories Machine Tour in Hull propsMaritime Memories Machine Tour in Hull what is sea boardMaritime Memories Machine Tour in Hull on the Streetlife Museum grounds

I told my two different stories of what sea means to me – Martin Parr and The Last Resort for British seaside and late sunset seaside visits in Latvia when I was a kid.

Maritime Memories Machine Tour in Hull postbox

Before I entered the WORM FESTIVAL I took a few more of Hull at its best- sunny Saturday.

Hull Old Town and City Of Culture flagCouple in Hull

C4DI building and people on the bridge Hull

Poorboy Vintage Clothing Humber Street

Humber Street in Hull Tidal Barrier in the background

And these photographs show off the good news – it is never dull in Hull this year in particular. It even feels a bit overwhelming….

Anyway, the WORM FESTIVAL was on the radar because of few reasons – these guys are from Rotterdam and the city is bonkers – I have been there and it is a cultural madness. Second  – THE PERFORMANCE BAR PLUGS YOU IN!   –  I was not entirely sure what it was and it was embarrassing to ask the stupid question to the artists – where is the best spot to watch the tricks – “WHAT TRICKS?”….

Third – Humber Street Gallery exhibits diverse stuff and it is never boring.

And this was one these – weirdly happy shocking whatthehellisgoingon. 
I arrived early for the time slot for the THE PERFORMANCE BAR PLUGS YOU IN! so I stuck to the plan to stay around and not to miss it.

It was delayed [very artist way to run things] so I had plenty of time to get familiar with environment.

Humber Street Gallery Live MusicHumber Street Gallery Live Music wide shotHumber Street Gallery Smiley Face ProjectionHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL artists drinkingHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL mask on the head

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL live music playing
And the unknown form-shape artists were up for a photograph – lights and sass was on.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL artists posing for cameraHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL artistsHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL BAR PERFORAMCE PLUG IN

It was so weird and annoying not to know what to expect, but when the first artist came on, I got the picture – it is nothing to do with an actual bar and drinks/cocktails been tossed in the air, no flames and smoke magic.
The bar was the place where artists can express their inner madness and desire, wild side and send the message to the culture-consumers.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL performance on bar

This lady was the first one to get on the stage [and the only one I had the patience/time to wait for] and it was a killer- weird one.
THE TITLE THAT I HAVE TO GIVE IS  – SHAVING FOAM AND A GIRL.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Saturday's performance girl on stageHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL artists performing WITH SHAVING FOAMWORM FESTIVAL at Humber Street Gallery artists performing WITH SHAVING FOAMHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL artists performingHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL artist performing WITH SHAVING FOAM sprayed on her body

The funny thing is – I did not get the message behind it, but it was so funny to watch peoples reactions that I enjoyed it.
The other reason why I decided that this is enough of BAR ART FART – I don’t think I dealt with the light very well.

Upstairs was the rest of the exhibition/activities and I expected some kind of normality. But I was so wrong – upstairs was another Rotterdam culture/art shock and my brain was tickled even more.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL stairs to Gallery Two and Three Alien expositionHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL stairs to Gallery Two and Three with a plant on staircaseHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL stairs to Gallery Two and Three with photographs of celebrities

Even getting to the gallery two and three is the art in itself – art to welcome. I got the sense that this is not an ordinary exhibition, which appears to be spot on, as I mentioned.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL stairs to Gallery Two and Three no white walls anymore

The clean – white wall- don’t touch the artwork – only watch with your eyes – listen and be quiet sense was gone. I entered a world of moving art, artists making art there and then, eating and shitting in the same place [in a good way]. The gallery was turned into a workshop with different elements.

I took me some good few minutes to feel like I know my grounds, although it was busy, it felt so focused and quiet.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two Man looking at the exhibitionHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two against Trump

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two Boxing Ring with boxing gloves on displayHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two boxing ring in prepHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two music records from HullHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two Artists make artworkHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two Boxing Ring Close Up with wooden slippersHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery TwoHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two media artHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two on set living room with man sat in itHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two artist reading poemHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two Coca Cola bookHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two on set living room
The sign of normality was the Hull City Of Culture 2017 volunteer and the camera around my neck – everything else – different world.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two Hull City Of Culture VolunteerHumber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two on set living room

“hello”

I had to sit down with the guy that seemed to be the curator/artist. Because I had to understand.

The conversation was about them, Rotterdam and Hull. The exhibition is not the exhibition that the gallery has seen before – it is a hands on workshop creating art around building babies and bridges between Rotterdam and Hull, Ground Gallery  included. This is what they said, this basically quoting them. There was no obvious explanation, but what I have gathered with my art knowledge – everything is made from complete scratch [like babies] and the involvement is the bridge between two cities.

The artists seemed real people, true people and what they do is who they are. Honesty about them, Hull and “the art” is what I appreciated the most.

and it was sad at the same time.
They said that the first time they arrived in Hull, walked through Humber Street they wanted to run away from the exhibiting here. Because it did not seem real – the newly built fresh breath of art, shops, galleries, bars, restaurants and antiques shop. They have said yes to the invitation to exhibit here, but they were not sure if they belong in the space given. They decided to do it their way anyway and collaborate with Hull heritage.

And this is not made up, this what we were talking about. And to not to forget the conversation and feeling, I recorded myself on the way home. I listen back and it really helps not to forget that artists from Rotterdam have came to Hull and feel like the Hull City Of Culture 2017  is ugly. Not the city and the people, but the brand, the logo, the investment and the idea to force on the culture they want us to consume. Of course on Friday they could have been chatting to some pro-city of culture visitors who told them of the nonsense, but that couldn’t influence them this much.
There must be a good reason of why that comes across…

 

So the bear is not as brown as we thought..hahaha.

My views about this is simple – he title has improved my relationship with Hull, given me so many opportunities to practice the photographic skill, I have met some fantastic people and seen amazing things/events/performances.
And a lot of people are aware of the “ugly scene” behind the curtains, but find a way how to gain something from the Hull City Of Culture 2017

The big bonus is  – it is not dull in Hull from Monday to Sunday and that is the most amazing thing.

Humber Street Gallery WORM FESTIVAL Gallery Two ALIEN PEAKING THROUGH

I really want to see the journals that WORM FESTIVAL will publish [as I was told] and the thoughts of returning to Rotterdam are present.

 

Happy #getcultured week 26!!!!!!!!!

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 5

Week 5 of 2017 has been good.

The beginning of the week was more “thedayaftertheMonday” dull and a bit rainy.  The end of the week activities, on the other hand, were lit with sunlight and everything le postive. Plus, I had a kid with me so we both ended up indulging in the Hull City Of Culture.

So I was cultured in a mood swing kind of a method.

Hull History Centre is a very beautiful and in my views underestimated building located in Hull City Centre. The “Hull Characters” exhibition was one of the things I wanted to see, plus at the time, I also wanted to take part in Revolutionary Makers Workshop, so I headed there on Tuesday.

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The exhibition was only small, with a lot of reading, which I am a bit lazy for and in the library there was some rusty old important books and documents on a display.

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I was interrupted by a fire alarm during the visit, so I forgot to get some info about the Revolutionary Makers Workshop.

My route from the Hull History Centre  into Old Town was different than usual. I revisited areas I haven’t seen in a while and was quite pleased that Hull is changing/developing.

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We now celebrate the past and future of Hull coming together for this year and I think the photo above makes a good point.

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We have always had culture and people who enjoy being part of the action, this year it is very saturated and easier to find.

The Blade is still on the map and it continues to fascinate me. Only in Hull its OK to have a massive wind turbine blade in the middle of a town square. It looks like it has been put there by giants and we are LEGO figures.

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I have kind of given up on taking a stunning photo of The Blade, so my attention turns to the volunteers guarding it and the seagulls.

Volunteers have lovely coloured coats with all the City Of Culture branding as if they are reassuring us about the importance of this year.

That is how I start my conversation with one of the volunteers. We talk about The Blade, what kind of questions people ask and about the seagulls respecting the monument.

And I was wrong, they to leave their marks on The Blade and it has to be cleaned weekly.

That morning The Blade was cleaned, so the birds enjoyed the “clean bedding”.

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The volunteer that I was talking with [sorry, I didn’t ask his name] was very kind and actually – very keen and educated regards to the City Of Culture. I hope that I will see him again at some point and tell him that I found the England’s Smallest Window.

 

 

Which brings me to the end of the week and GET CULTURED PART II.

My “must see” list extended during the week and Saturday was a good day to get out of the house for a long walks around Old Town and Fruit Market.

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The sun lit the Hull in my favourite light – golden and happy.

I wanted to share the dose of culture with a wonderful girl Melanie. She is like a daughter to me and she is very keen for long walks and a bit of art/photographs.

First we found the England’s Smallest Window. The Land of Green Ginger (grid reference TA099287) is a narrow street in the old town area of  Hull. The tiny window is part of the George Hotel.

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WARNING!! THE CONTENT BELOW HAS GOT BODY PARTS IN IT. ONE BODY PART. ONE PHOTO.

 

Just next to the England’s Smallest Window there was a fairly big window and Hull locals have embraced the available space to express the art of their own. I don’t find it abusive, I find it funny. Sometimes people are idiots, we all can be idiots. And I have definitely spend some time in my life drawing these on inappropriate spaces myself….

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As we finished giggling and I finished answering question of why am I photographing this, we headed towards the Fruit Market area and the sun was burning our eyes out.

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How many times I have named this street in the Old Town as my favourite and photographed someone appreciating the space…countless..

This street has got many references, memories and charm. But I have no idea of what is the street name…

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Hull fascinates me, and mainly because people in Hull are a bit bonkers, very chilled and have their own sense of humour.

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Melanie asked me if I can turn her super hero figure part of the culture. She wanted to leave her own mark, as we all.

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When I stormed in to the Humber Street Gallery, I was very excited to see the Dead Bod.

Dead Bod the much-loved graffiti featuring a dead bird, which was painted on the side of a corrugated iron shed at Alexandra Dock in the 1960s by Captain Len ‘Pongo’ Rood and Chief Engineer Gordon Mason. Dead Bod became a local landmark, symbolising Hull’s fishing heritage, and a campaign was launched to save it after Hull 2017 Major Partner Associated British Ports (ABP) removed the sheds as part of the development of the site for Siemens, also a Major Partner.

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I never knew the story behind the very cute graffiti bird legend, so interesting to know.

Humber Street Gallery  is offering another great way how to get cultured and the space looks amazing.
Unfortunately I will be going back another time, as the exhibition content was with a lot of human “bits” which was not something that Melanie was keen to see.

The last stop was the Kingston Art Group Gallery.

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Places and art of this kind is why I really want to be part of Hull. We are great and we have talented artists. It never is dull and the standard is high.

It was my honour to have a look at two artworks by famous and amazing Anna Bean.

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This lady Jane Jones is one of my hero’s. She is a lecturer from Hull School of Art&Design and three years in a row she was my CATS teacher. Jane Jones is wise, interesting and as I discovered in my last year at UNI – she is a painter [and a great one].

She is the Kingston Art Group Gallery member and she was exhibiting one of her artworks.

Our conversation started off around the coat I was wearing and I feel ridiculously stupid for not talking about things that matter.

 

The last thing on that Saturday was the heater in the gallery. I was very sure that it was a work of art, but as I couldn’t find it on the list, I approached one of the ladies working in the gallery.

It turns out it is just a heater. But I wouldn’t be surprised if it was more than that.

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IN A CONCLUSION – THERE IS A LOTS TO SEE AND DO THIS MONTH.
GET OUT AND GET CULTURED, COS HULL 2017.

SEE YOU NEXT WEEK!!!