MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – JUNE 2018

It’s a bit an alien moment to type in the “MY CITY OF CULTURE…” as I feel like its been ages since I wrote about culture.

June was a month that barely existed in the means of culture engagement.
Half of it I worked my arse off and half of it I spent away in Latvia. There was very little time to get cultured. Plus, here we are again – late [3rd July]

There was two highlights, plus one that’s has no art culture, but still a social culture.

Humber Street Gallery  IT TAKES A VILLAGE

53 DEGREES MUSIC ORGANISED GIG AT ZEBEDEE’S YARD SLAVES AND DREAM WIFE

JANE TOMLINSON RUN FOR ALL ASDA FOUNDATION HULL 10K

Therefore I will short and sweet.

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IT TAKES A VILLAGE is something very pleasant for the eye, but difficult at times to digest for the mind. Right – I don’t mind sarcasm, consumerism concerned slogans and taking the piss out of stupidity and our generation problems, but can we have something new for a change.

The displays are full of professional skill and technical abilities, beautiful light installations and textile masterpieces and clever use of space. But deep inside I wish there was art about dreams, aims, goals, unicorns and pink flamingos. I laugh at our century, our society is a bit of a mind fuck to understand, so can I have something that we all have hidden deep inside – hope that everything will be fine, hard work pays of kind of message, dream big-reach your goals kind of theme.

I seriously need some cheese in my life or a faith in humanity. So the experience of the exhibition is divided.

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53 DEGREES MUSIC in co-operation with The Warren Youth Project organised a amazing gig with DREAM WIFE and SLAVES headlining. I actually won the tickets via their competition and that sent me off as the happiest person ever. I was torn between enjoying myself [drinks’n that] and running the JANE TOMLINSON RUN FOR ALL ASDA FOUNDATION HULL 10K the next day, but you can have it all, I enjoyed both to the fullest.

There was no official permission for me to take photos, but of course I couldn’t resist to have few snaps with SLAVES.

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The energy was amazing. Thank you for giving the opportunity 53 DEGREES MUSIC

 

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Above actual proof that everything is possible. With my friends we cheer and celebrate at the JANE TOMLINSON RUN FOR ALL ASDA FOUNDATION HULL 10K
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Just as the finishing touch for the June culture wonders. The street art/graffiti/mural culture that is peaking in recent year is really making me smile. I keep spotting cool wall art and noting down to take photos of those.
This one is located in Fruit Market area. I have few spotted down Holderness Road and Beverley Road which I need to visit this month.

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Keep the culture going people!

 

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 47

ON THE WEEK WHEN I WAS LOOSING THE PLOT COS BUSY…

SERIOUSLY SCRAPING FOR CULTURE THIS WEEK, WHY? YEAR IS COMING TO A CLOSE AND THINGS REALLY SLOWING DOWN?!

 

LIST FOR THIS WEEK:

I was in town, I went back to the WHERE DO WE GO FROM HERE? by JASON BRUGES STUDIO  to get a better angle, because these giant mystery units might change or disappear in next few days.

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I can’t wait until they reveal the “magic”.

 

The same day I was a witness to the preparations to CHRISTMAS LIGHT SWITCH ON PREP which is a massive attraction to everyone in Hull. the word Christmas now is on everyone’s vocabulary and of course the event is expected to be AMAZING, cos Hull 17.

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I loved how taken from a specific angle, I was able to imagine that Ferens Art Gallery is moved to rich and green woodlands.

Event organisers and workforce was running like little bee’s and I felt a bit sad that I will miss the light switch-on.

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People, however most of the time minded their own daily business.

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On Thursday I had a meeting in QUEENS HOUSE SHOWCASE and I was lucky to see the CLAIRE HOLDSTOCK’S RUIN VALUE.

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THESE ARE NOT COLOURED PORK SCRATCHINGS – JUST IN CASE YOU WONDERED.

The artwork is very pleasant – in and out of context. I really want to find out more about the artwork and I might attend one of the many drop-in sessions at the Queens House Showcase on the 7th December.

On Saturday the big hype about the COCA- COLA TRUCK TOUR UK – KINGSTON UPON HULL was very obvious – the traffic in town and masses of people in general and quite honestly I was not sure I can be asked. It wasn’t really about the culture, it was very cold and do I really want to ruin my childhood vision about the Coca-Cola Christmas adverts, Santa Claus and the magic truck???

But I happened to be in the area, so eeehhh – why not.

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Quite honestly – there was no feeling of Christmas spirit and there was no chance that I would wait 30 min to get a SMALL can of ice cold Coca-Cola.

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But there was a lot of people making the most of it and that is always worth celebrating.

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Last but not least – all week I have been hopelessly making visits to Princess Quay for the CENTRE OF ATTENTION 

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Twice I visited and the shutters were hiding potentially one of the most interesting exhibits this season.
On Friday, I found out it is open from the 24-26th November. Lovely. But this is a lesson to learn for the future.

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After a quick sneak around I thought – I don’t have enough, I want more of this creative madness. The brave people who are wearing prosthetics are worth celebrating anyway, they have moved on and making the most of their lives. But this is the next level awesomeness. I would definitely like to see more of this. And not just in the galleries – on the streets [although probably not very practical] and definitely in the fashion magazines, fashion shows, runways. Amazing!!!!!!

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NEXT WEEK AND FOR THE FUTURE I HAVE A TO DO LIST, THE MOST EXCITING THINGS ARE PROBABLY THE LIMITLESS AND LOOK UP: FLOE – HEINRICH AND PALMER

 

HAPPY CULTURE PEOPLE.

 

 

MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – WEEK 40

HELLO CULTURE
HELLO HULL
HELLO LEMONS.

Freshly brewed photos from HULL FAIR 2017 and tiny bit from Humber Mouth Literature Festival celebrating 25th anniversary – science workshop HANDS ON! + Hall For Hull @Trinity Square

Sunday had high expectations that didn’t exceed, so I squeezed in a bit of mind blowing science and pretended to be under 15 years old.

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HANDS ON! where family activities inspired by the shortlist of the Royal Society Young People’s Book Prize 2017 – basically book content that could be difficult to pick up by reading only, so the workshop made science and other subjects come alive. Entertainment with learning at the top scores. My mind was blown by some of the characteristics of electricity, fossils and enthusiasm from the people running the workshop. Yeah!

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SATURDAY OF COURSE WAS THE HULL FAIR.

There is so much love with a bit of hate dose for HULL FAIR and every year it is my autumn Christmas.

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HULL FAIR 2017 is an extravaganza with crazy rides, smells, colours, sounds, people and everything, everything that you can imagine. It reaches both ends of spectrum – it is one of the best events of the year making so many people happy, providing a week long entertainment that roots down to 1278. recently celebrating its 7th Century….
And then it is the worst event that shows the how the society behaves in the 21st Century, how deep in to a consumer dream we have sunk [cheap China shit toys is my fave example] and that people are PIGS! The amount of rubbish and food is extreme. Pushing and exhaling close to a strangers ears is only one thing, the second most annoying thing is the silly grown ups smoking near children and allowing children to pick up food that they’ve dropped and put them in their mouths…
And then we return to fun – rides, laughter, joy, juicy burger, candy floss, butterflies in the belly and weeks wages gone! Is this close to your experience?

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HULL FAIR 2017 for a photographer is something to experience – slow shutter speeds and rides, different weather, night/day, people and food stalls….
And I have done it for quite a few years – first year was to nail the rides and perfect movement of the lights, second year it was the rides and the food stalls and on the third year I pretended to be Peter Dench in Ibiza taking photos of the drunken Brits – right in the face flash to expose the light and the dark of the average HULL FAIR 2017 visitor. Last year I couldn’t be asked, but this year I took my camera for one more time in the honour of my photographic challenge.
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I was snapping rather than creating the perfect photograph and my second curtain Speedlight skill reflects the madness walking along Walton Street.
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HULL FAIR 2017 IS CRAZY. IT IS EXACTLY THE SAME EVERY YEAR, BUT I WOULD NOT MISS IT FOR THE WORLD.

Working my way backwards  – on Thursday, when the sun was kissing my face in the early morning I went down to Trinity Square to see the HALL FOR HULL

HALL FOR HULL are steel constructions celebrating two architects designing an ambitious temporary outdoor structure in response to the historic heart of Hull specially designed for Trinity Square.

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The rigid geometry of the columns ware carefully distorted and redefined by the artwork of Varini, who explores the illusions of geometry through eye-deceiving photographic techniques, together with the tradition of pictorial representation. 

Source: Hull 17 

I purposely went there guided by the sunlight and it looked spectacular. It was the sun shining through the sculptures and shaping the early morning rush. Moment for real culture wonder when you really feel like this year, every week, everyday you can get to see some incredible things.

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And just as I was waving goodbye to the sculptures school kiddies came for a tour so I stick around to see how they get on with the sculptures. I guess that I was hoping for the perfect shot with a child engaging with the culture – but you must remember that taking photos children without a permission looks dodgy in is not appropriate.

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These sculptures are beautiful, but they are cold and without a context look sad. So the connection with the sculptures and people is the blood line for them, without people touching them, getting in to the skin of the sculpture, they make no sense. GO AND TOUCH THE For Hull @Trinity Square

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THIS WEEK IS LOOKING RATHER BUSY, CULTURE IS OVERWHELMING, SO I NEED TO SWALLOW THE LEMONS AND CRACK ON!

HAPPY 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.

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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!!!!!!!!!

KCOM SMILE CAMPAIGN @NORTH POINT SHOPPING CENTRE

HELLO.

Last Friday I was asked to photograph KCOM Smile Campaign at North Point Shopping Centre.

The event was brilliant. It was for the locals from Bransholme to have a happy Friday with free balloons, crayons, re-usable shopping bag, free face paint for kids by very talented and incredible artist Tracy Nicholson and opportunity to ask KCOM representatives about KCOM services and find out when the ultra-fast broadband will be installed.

NUMBER ONE REASON WHY IT WAS HAPPY FRIDAY EVENT:

KCOM representatives a pleasure to work alongside,  super fun, answered all the questions and were great with kids.

NUMBER TWO REASON WHY IT WAS HAPPY FRIDAY EVENT:

North Point Shopping Centre. is a great space for events. It brings different people for a shopping journey, often hosting events that most of the time are free to attend.

NUMBER THREE REASON WHY IT WAS HAPPY FRIDAY EVENT:

Bransholme is one of Hull’s areas that have the most interesting and diverse people. They are honest, bold and “crackers”. Lovely to meet the new generation and see their smiley faces after they see them selves turned into a fairy or Spiderman.

Here is a quick insight of what happened.

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You can also view the photos:
KCOM Facebook Page

THANK YOU BRANSHOLME/KCOM FOR MAKING MY FRIDAY AWESOME.