Communal Re-Imagination launches a series of workshops for young people
Communal Re-Imagination, an alternative art school program of the Vernacular Art-space Laboratory Foundation, launched a series of workshops in the Iwaya / Makoko community in Lagos to engage young people in skills development and projects creative. The program provides a space for alternative cultural dialogue and a platform for knowledge sharing that regenerates and revives the community through artistic interventions and creative engagement. Participants are generally between 18 and 35 years old and live in the community. They are encouraged to re-imagine their community based on their understanding of its current state and relate it to what they wish it could be using multimedia and interdisciplinary methods.
The three-month series of creative workshops and brainstorming sessions are facilitated by both the Society of Explorers at the site’s Gallery and by selected interdisciplinary artists from the artist network of the Vernacular Art Lab. -space. One of the school’s activities includes a three-day 3D printing workshop hosted by Dada Books architect, writer and publisher Ayodele Arigbabu. Last week, a five-day adire and kampala workshop was organized in partnership with an organization based in Abeokuta.
Communal Re-Imagination Artistic Director Aderemi Adegbite explained how this program started a few years ago and the support the organization has received so far.
“We started in 2018 and our idea for the program is to involve the youth of the community through the arts because that’s what we know how to do,” he began. “It’s just to engage their minds. We want to give them another way to re-imagine their community and themselves. We have funds for the first edition of it. Prince Clau Funds Netherlands funded the program. In 2019, they appealed to the next generation of creatives and we applied for funding through a community re-imagining project. It was the money that was given to us that we used to build our space. We usually have exhibits and all of that in this space as well. Our space is very experimental and liberal in terms of artistic expression.
In addition to the support of the European organization, Communal Re-Imagination has also benefited from the support of other international cultural organizations such as the British Council.
“In February of this year, we had a British Council funded program called the Art Multiplier Lab Program and I was one of the selected,” he said. “After the program, we asked for funding that was only for five people. To be eligible we had to partner with an organization in the UK and we found one in Sheffield. We organized a series of workshops on 3D printing, animation, interviews with artistic leaders such as Segun Adefila. Next week we will be doing video art until next month. For this adire program, we have collaborated with the Kuta Art Foundation in Abeokuta and they have photographers and people working in adire.
In the printing house, we partnered with a Somolu printing house and they came to teach them the context and printing techniques.
Other workshops reserved for the program include video art, t-shirt printing, disc jockey, performance art, contemporary pop dance, among others. On August 20, the workshop series will conclude with an exhibition that involves all successful participants.