Guest Blog from somewhereto_ Freelance Delivery Partner Ashleigh Ward
Continuing our series of guest blogs from the people that made summer of somewhereto_ we hand the controls over to another inspirational figure. Meet somewhereto_ Freelance Delivery Partner for the South East Ashleigh Ward.
Launching summer of somewhereto_ in Brighton has been the biggest exhibition I have ever organised, and definitely the most rewarding. Over the past five months I have been networking with different young people and because of this campaign I managed to secure a huge warehouse space in Circus Street, which allowed me to pull together all the talented young artists and give them a space to exhibit and perform.
Getting the space was a challenge to say the least, but I was determined to make it a somewhereto_ space, even after everyone warned me away. I just knew that for a big creative festival like summer of somewherto_ there was nowhere better than this huge abandoned warehouse in Brighton.
I had three key members that helped me make this event happen and everyone was so enthusiastic. All had different skills and qualities and I wanted to give them the freedom to do what they wanted. Al from Iklect is starting his own collective and has a number of artists he wanted to exhibit. Becky (first year sculptor at University of Brighton) was a good leader so I put her in charge of the sculptors and she did an amazing job of organising and curating the 3D element to the show.
Hannah from Canopy Creative was the first young person I met in my new job role as freelance delivery partner for somewhereto_SE, so when I secured Circus Street, I knew I wanted her to bring her ideas to this venue which was amazing. She built and hung Sussex meadows from the ceiling which had a long table underneath, this brought a beautiful elegance to the juxtaposing industrial warehouse which worked perfectly. On the Saturday night she organised a ‘Pot Luck Supper’ where people brought a dish and bottle of wine each and shared the food table which was like ‘the last supper’.
Over all the variety of the show was brilliant. Not only did we have over 100 artists exhibit but we also had amazing workshops and events. One of my favorite workshops was the 3D projection-mapping workshop from the collective L.E.G and this was a rare opportunity to learn 3D projection-mapping for free.
The opening night saw more then 700 guests come through the door. The few people that I got to talk to on the opening night loved the show. I spoke to someone that works at Lighthouse Gallery and he said that this show didn’t feel like Brighton but had the feel of Berlin to it, which was incredible to hear. Also local Brighton MP Caroline Lucas came down and said, “It’s a brilliant use of space. It’s challenging, exciting and everyone should come and see it.”
When I closed the shutters at the end of the opening night the crowd outside cheered and clapped, which was a lovely moment. It made me feel proud to be part of somewhereto_ giving young people this incredible opportunity and seeing it all come together so wonderfully.
I loved every moment of curating this exhibition show, and working with such talented and motivated young people has been brilliant. The support of the public has been really positive and seeing them blown away but what we’ve all achieved, has been the most rewarding. This is by far the best show I have done to date.
– Ashleigh Ward 25 Freelance Regional Delivery Partner for somewhereto_SE
Inspired by Ashleigh’s incredible 3 day event? Want to get involved yourself? Head over to somewhereto.com to learn more and find out what’s going on near you!