Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Artist talk/ presentation for EXPLORE, the lifelong learners group

Today I gave a presentation about my art practice to members of a lifelong learning group called EXPLORE. Artists Holly Weever and Alex Searle also discussed their respective art practices. 

Explore was originally conceived in 2009 by Dr Ian Ground of the North-east Centre for Lifelong Learning (formerly run by the University of Sunderland) as a creative response to the effective withdrawal of funding for lifelong learners by the previous government. 
Explore is a radical and revolutionary vision of what lifelong learning can be: accessible and flexible, democratic and participative, innovative and challenging. Learning for the love of learning. And built around the learning that people say they need rather than what successive Governments think they need.In the summer of 2013, funding was withdrawn and Explore was to close. 
However, a group of Explore Ambassadors formed an Interim Steering Committee and called two Extraordinary General Meetings in June 2013.  As a result of their initiative and the overwhelming response, in September they registered The Joseph Cowen Lifelong Learning Centre as a Community Interest Company, published a draft programme for the autumn term and requested prospective members to commit their £325.  On Monday 7th October, it was announced that EXPLORE had sufficient members to run the programme and the first classes convened on Tuesday 15th! 
I thoroughly enjoyed the event and was delighted that the audience were so responsive and enthusiastic about our work. As ever, it was interesting to hear the opinions of and answer questions from people whom I had not met before. That said, one woman who attended the group today also came to the preview of Out of Kansas, and Jodie and I had spoken at length to her. She had some really interesting interpretations of the work and comments to make. I also enjoyed the presentations by Holly and Alex.

The room in which I gave the presentation had rather beautiful windows.

For more information about EXPLORE, visit http://www.weareexplore.org.uk/index.asp 

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