We are ON for a year of all things SATURDAY with our funding secured from Arts Council England, Leeds Inspired, Leeds 2023, Mid Pennine Arts, Tees Valley Arts, Signal Films and Media and other partners!
I am so pleased to be ending 2022 with a looking forward to a year of work with photography as Saturday Town rolls out across the North. Along with photographing in multiple locations, creating exhibitions and publications while working with educators and young creatives I have been developing partnerships, writing proposals and grant applications and hatching business plans. I have been diving deep into my wildest vision of a project where portrait photography is used to both celebrate and also to reflect societal value and personal identities.
My travelling studio uses high street spaces and the streets themselves as promenade, as theatrical backdrop to person, to the playful language of presentation, of bodily self expression, of self. These spaces, often empty shops where retail once inhabited, often whole streets of empty shops, are an essential element of Saturday Town. Who owns the streets? What are these spaces for now in consideration to internet shopping, to the ‘cost of living’, to issues of ethical fashion, to consumerism.
I work with creative courses and art spaces in each location, directly with the educators and creative learners in the communities I’m in.
Collaboration is essential, listening and developing each project, each session, each portrait, in tune with location, landscape, season, person. It is so much fun to work in this way; to step into each day with a grounding, deep knowing of my process and tools, everything I have learned in my years of working, but to stay with curiosity, in play, in intuition. AAh! It is everything!
I am so grateful to Arts Council England who have supported this work and enabled me to develop myself as an artist while delivering this project. With my recent ACE grant I am able to roll out a dynamic programme in 2023 which supports myself and my team to grow and develop. I am also grateful to Leeds Inspired for their ongoing support. Saturday Town started as Saturday Girl in 2013 in Leeds and Leeds Inspired supported my work then and now. I will be working with Leeds 2023 with just the most exciting Saturday Town to date with big collaborations, events and opportunities for 16-18 year olds throughout the city. More in this as it develops!
I continue my work in Burnley with Mid Pennine Arts, Burnley College and Historic England where the wild folks light up the streets with their swagger!
I am working in Kirklees and Cumbria on new projects that are in development.
And back to Redcar and Tees Valley Arts to cook up some seaside magick.
There is more more more coming in Blackpool because I love it so much I can’t stay away and something cooking in Todmorden with creative collaborations to come.
I am so grateful for the ongoing support of Open Eye Gallery in the spiritual home of Saturday Girl, Liverpool, and also to BA Photography University of Derby where conversations of the role and function of photography dive deep.
Thank you and Good Night!