MY CITY OF CULTURE – MY HULL – NOVEMBER 2018

For the first time I have delayed the monthly culture blog for so long. It is confusing to write now about what happened then, because December already has given me different emotions and experiences. So I will try to screw my head back round and go back in time.
As usual in the second half of 2018, I feared that I will have nothing to write about, but somehow I have tricked myself and November was productive.

First –  to my deep sadness I missed out Hull Comedy Festival 2018, but I went to Big City Of Culture Quiz of the Year to make up for it.

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It felt like I have missed a big yearly family gathering and being there to see few familiar faces made me load more happier.

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I also went down to Queens House Showcase to see the ARTIST TAKEOVER #3.

Again – pretty much a regular there since I  have Creative ENRG mentor on my side and I go there on a monthly basis.
Thought for the future – exhibit there myself..

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Artists on display  – Lucy Kelly, Hannah Green, Ingrid Holborn and Saffron Brown

Hannah Green

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Ingrid Holborn

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Saffron Brown

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Lucy Kelly

I have worked with Lucy before, taking photographs of her paintings, textiles and ceramics and she is a raw artist so hard not to love. Her work is complete and made with thought about global issues. Her personality is bold and I am very honoured to have her on my client list.
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Very end of the month I had a very special visitor – my sister and I wanted to share my love for the city and we both went to the URBAN LEGENDS:NORTHERN LIGHTS

In all honesty – the camera was pretty much a habit rather than intentional tool for the experience and after seeing fantastic photographs from the event, I wish I took it more seriously. These days we don’t get events like that in the city often and it was a great photo-opportunity that I missed out on.

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One of the creative directors was Anna Bean known as Bluebeany [alongside other great ones] and her stamp of fantastic creations was all over the displays.

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OH THE NIGHT!  by IMITATING THE DOG

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As an outsider my sister loved most of the installations, some more than others. At least, she got to see why I love the city so much.
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Oh, at the beginning of the month I had a visit to the Portraits at Sea Hull Maritime Museum.

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I think my favourite moment was the conversation with the volunteer about the exhibition next door and how she got emotional. Or when she said that there aren’t many opportunities to volunteer these days… If you ask me, that is the “legacy” that we have to deal with – we are hungry for culture and we are getting starved.

As part of my Illuminate Project: Legacy I went to see Alec Gill’s Hessle Roaders Guided Tour at Brynmore Jones Library.

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Across my social media I have been banging on about it a lot, but for those who need filling in: Alec Gill and hes Hessle Roaders photographs seen back in September 2017 at St Johns Church inspired me to invite him as part of my search for City of Culture legacy. He is an absolute sweetheart – caring, loving, warm, kind and witty. He has welcomed me in his home, introduced with his poetry writing wife Audrey and shared his side of the story. Going to one of his Guided tours was not just for the project, it was also to see and hear him again, proving that he carries the legacy flag in his heart and inspires me do the same.

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Throughout November I had some thoughts about City Of Culture, the impact that it had on me and how it slowly starts to fade. Since the city and Absolutely Cultured is having less cultural events, I feel like loosing the connection with the city. And I start to wonder if having less interest from the Hull people is mirroring my experience. Or is it just that thing where I need to crack on and have my own cultural journey on my own terms, like I did in 2017.
And it leads me to the question – do I continue my culture blogging in 2019? What is your thoughts?
Should I stick to the promise that Culture Company gave us in 2017 about three years of legacy and just crack on?

December is half way and I am full of reflections – Illuminate Project: Legacy Redeye event happened, I went down Preston Road derelict housing estate and had I have emotional review to write about A Northern Soul.

“BEFORE I DIE” WALL @HULL PRIDE, 2016

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On the 16th of July more than one amazing things took place.
THE HULL PRIDE was planned to be the biggest in Hull so far, second BEFORE I DIE WALL was set up by Eskimosoup and I was going to my annual summer visit to Latvia.
It was an outrageous day, as I had to be up early to help and photograph for setting up the wall, edit and blog the photographs from the morning activities, pack suitcases and tidy my house and never the less – photograph the THE HULL PRIDE and BEFORE I DIE WALL …… I thought I did bloody well, because at the end I actually did not miss my plane and was alive.

First – apologise for making promises I can’t keep. When I arrived in Latvia, on the first few days I could not find software and the rest is history…

I am not worried, because events like THE HULL PRIDEand BEFORE I DIE WALL has left a legacy and the point made will last for a long time.

THE HULL PRIDE was inspiring and I had a smile on my face at all times. The pride really represented freedom, diversity and good spirit. People looked ever so happy and proud to be part of the movement.

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I followed the parade from Queens Gardens to stage area near Fuel. The wall was suited in the pride “party” area and as soon as the parade finished, I was rushing down to see what has happened to the wall…

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Already before the party started, the wall was full of people’s thoughts about what would they wish to do before they die.
It was a beautiful view, I was so proud of the fact that Eskimosoup and I have done a great job and got people involved.

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Sometimes we need a platform of a strange kind to say what we can’t say to anyone else. Do we dare to think about our lives in these terms and consider the fact that one day we all pass away.

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Different kinds of people got involved, the wall was popular and the messages were inspiring.

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If we take in account that 95% of the messages are genuine and people truly mean what they write, we can see what is on societies mind….. A lot of travelling requests, political wishes and little life goals..
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The image above seems quite strange, as the film industry often associate God or Jesus as those that can fulfill our wishes, but actually it is the people’s dedication, motivation and hard work that will make these writings a reality.

As I was leaving half way, the wall continued to blossom during the event and I hope people enjoyed to be part of this.

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Massive thank you to Eskimosoup and Jenni for the efforts, time and work. I feel honoured to be able to collaborate and photograph the wall.

 

 

If you think that the wall is awesome and you have suggestions where we could do the next BEFORE I DIE WALL, please let us know by commenting below, or Facebook us.

“BEFORE I DIE” WALL AT YO-YO FESTIVAL

The “BEFORE I DIE” wall is something that was mentioned to me whilst discussing my Final Major project. It seemed like a fantastic idea that unites people from all over the world, allowing anonymously say something that you might not discuss with your family and friends. We don’t seem to live our lives constantly thinking about the day when we might die, we want to live and do great things.

The wall is world wide project created by artist Candy Chang . He created an interactive wall on an abandoned house in her neighbourhood to create an anonymous place to help restore perspective and share intimately with neighbours while remaining an introvert.

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The success of this idea is incredible. As website describes “After posting a few photos online, the images spread and she received hundreds of messages from people who wanted to make a wall with their community. She created this website with resources and now thanks to passionate people around the world, over 1,000 Before I Die walls have been created in over 35 languages and over 70 countries, including Kazakhstan, Iraq, Haiti, China, Ukraine, Portugal, Japan, Denmark, Argentina, and South Africa.”

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I was super keen to set up one in Hull. City of Culture/2017 is coming and this could extend the community involvement, be creative and show the greatness of the people living in Hull.

Photographic aspect would be used to spread the word and record the “life” of the wall.

I happened to have great people around me being interested in the wall as much as I was and that’s where the project was born and started to take shape.
John and Jenni from eskimosoup had a realistic idea of how to make this happen. The first stage is to set up a smaller version of the wall [low cost] and see what the public reaction is. Jenni had a great idea to test the wall at the Bank Holiday Weekend YO-YO Festival on Princess Avenue created by organisation established in 1995 YO-YO THE FAMOUS INDIE ROCK N ROLL DISCO.

The festival was family friendly, covers different times of the day and pretty much is an ideal festival for the first “BEFORE I DIE” wall.

We set up in the morning, I felt like the preparation is essential to photograph as we are doing this from scratch.  Jenni already had prepared the wall [great job] and we just had to set it up. We also thought to extend the wall to the pavement and allow people to express themselves.

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Later on the day, when festival was two hours in, I popped down to the venue and checked if people have been near to the wall. We really hoped that people will get involved and we will be able to take the project further, responding to the thousands of interests [high expectation haha].

I was happy to see that people have written they wishes and some have used the pavement and chalks to express themselves.

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Then later on the night we went down to see what is happening again, plus enjoy the festival – music and atmosphere.

We were super happy that people have continued to write on the wall and pavement.
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It was interesting to see what the messages are.

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The experience was a learning curve for the “BEFORE I DIE” wall. We have learned that people will get engaged we just need to give them the space and tools.

We know that kids love it too, so do we need to create a kids “before I die wall” in the future?

My personal preference would be 3x bigger wall and we will be working towards that for the future reference.

We have some great plans for Hull and “BEFORE I DIE” wall, so keep you eyes and ears open.

As for the festival, I did love the atmosphere and so I did love a bit of live music.

My personal favourite was NINETIES BOY and his “gang”. Just loved the 90’s cheese and tackiness, his presence was ace and OHH, the lyrics…

 

Overall – happy to announce that the wall and the festival was great success, thanks Jenni and John for great work and support, it’s my honor to be part of this.