Freespaces of transformation, Wenlock Barn Estate London 2008 - 2018
Over ten years we worked long term with residents of Wenlock Barn Estate to claim and care for 5 pieces of land on the Estate. These previously fenced in pieces of grass have since become places for the cultivation of care and culture through a number of processes including; performance, ritual, cooking, planting, herbal medicine, collaborative design and co-construction. The spaces become not only beautiful and peaceful places within the city but function as points of local governance.The garden is a space for creative expression, listening and action. It is a contemporary dialogue between architecture, ecology and landscape.
FreeSpace ideas have been cultivated through the estate spreading amongst the blocks of Napier court, Catherwood Court and Wenlock Court. The projects began with the Growing Kitchen garden, the catalyst to the ones that followed, took as its impetus the idea that the kitchen as the heart of the home, could also become the heart of the community. The success of this project led to the planting of a foraging garden, herb garden, back garden and a community orchard. FreeSpace projects have used these spots between the buildings as a starting point to converse and construct new meanings for these spaces. Creating through collective design, construction and learning, places of occupancy. Occupancy not just of gardens, the form that they present, but of spaces of collective and public acceptance. Places to create shared and new memories of spaces. Places constructed by the hands. FreeSpace has involved long-term projects and short term interruptions throughout the Wenlock Barn Estate.
AWARDS AND REVIEWS
In 2013 The Growing Kitchen garden and Growing Kitchen Resident Group received Highly Commended in the Funding awards of the National Lottery Local Food Fund, for impact and diversity and the resident group was awarded Local Food Heroes for the sustained achievements of the Growing Kitchen Resident Group.
We were honoured that the head of Big Lottery England came to the Estate to present the award read more click HERE. In 2017 we developed BREADROCK, a myth and film and object work that celebrated the exchanges created between the diverse cultures and people on the Estate. BREADROCK developed in collaboration with Rosalind Fowler was featured in reviews in 2018 by Caroline Douglas, director of Contemporary Arts Society Cherry Smyth, Art Monthly and Tanya Harrod in Crafts Magazine.
Main and small grant funding from the Big Lottery local food fund, Shoreditch Trust, London Community Foundation. Awards For All, Wenlock Barn Tenants Mangement Organisation, Capital growth and Our Space our Say. Recently recieving Funding from Arts Council England for BREADROCK