Last week 24 young poets joined Adisa the Verbaliser at the Black Cultural Archives’ beautifully renovated and extended Georgian building in Windrush Square to explore the rich heritage of of African and Caribbean men and women who have impacted on British society. Children from Christ Church, Loughborough, Stockwell and Jessop Primary schools worked together to produce poetry together – all in a 2 hour inspiring morning. One young poet commented" I wish I could put Adisa in my bag and take him back to school"!
We are delighted that some of the wonderful words and images produced by year 8 students from Evelyn Grace Academy are on display on billboard posters in Electric Lane, as part of our Eliot Now project. 6 students’ work has been chosen for the boards with more work beautifully framed and mounted in an exhibition in the school itself. The students’ images and words were inspired by TS Eliot’s The Waste Land, and follow detailed study of Eliot’s poetry. Thanks goes to Photofusion gallery for working with the students on their photographic images,to the Clore Poetry and Literature Awards for funding our term long project and to the school staff whose enthusiasm brought this project alive.
The exhibition of some of the words and pictures produced by BLC primaries as part of the Eliot Now project is now open for viewing at the Carnegie Library, Herne Hill Road, SE24 0EG and gives a taste of some of the wonderful work produced by the year 5 classes in the BLC as part of the project, generously funded by Clore Poetry and Literature Awards. If you would like to see the exhibition, it runs until 31st March. Contact 020 7926 6050 (Carnegie Library) for opening times. Here we give a taster of some of the work.
On 10th February the BLC held 2 back-to-back performance presentations of just some of the poetry written by our talented year 5 children across the cluster, inspired by TS Eliot’s Old Possums Book of Practical Cats. 240 children gathered at The Ritzy cinema screen 1 in Brixton for the events, and all classes performed poems they had written together as a class, as well as some fine solo writing and performances. What was particularly striking, was the way the children brought the structure of Eliot’s poetry into their own work, as well as experimenting with vocabulary and rhyme. In many ways, the study of these Eliot poems is secondary school stuff, but clearly the year 5s had worked to a very high level and had produced fabulous work. Now some of the poetry and artwork inspired by the project is being prepared to be exhibited in Carnegie Library in Lambeth during March. Thanks again go to the poet Jared Louche for helping the children discover Eliot’s work, to all the staff who have supported the children and to Clore Poetry and Literature Awards for funding the project.
Over the course of a week in January, 180 year 8 students from Evelyn Grace Academy explored themes from the Wasteland through photography, working with professional photographers and young volunteers from Photofusion gallery. See the students in action through these photographs.
Excited and delighted to report that my groups at St Saviours and St John Angell schools got off to a flyer and hit the targets I set them for the workshops: to pick a theme, write a ‘chorus’ – and have fun! Well done all, including the enthusiastic staff – can’t do it without you! Next time we’ll be finish writing our pieces. Glad to hear many of you are already looking forward to it. Let’s hear what you think about your experiences of the project so far…