A New Creative Hub for Wood Street
We want to unleash creativity in our streets & spaces. By building an artistic space for our community, we will bring more fun and excitement to Walthamstow for all to enjoy!
The Wood Street Walls community art initiative is all about bringing character and creativity to our community. Working with local residents, children and young adults will develop skills whilst improving their area. By giving art a permanent home in Wood St, our artistic community can continue to transform our spaces and places to their full potential!
There is a real need for affordable artist space in London, with only 300 artist studio buildings catering to 11,500 artists. London is seen as the creative capital of the world, but within the next 5 years over 3000 artists will lose their place of work.
Waltham Forest only has 70 studios. In comparison the number in our neighbouring Borough of Hackney is 1124.
By reviving a disused public building – such as the Manual Instruction Centre in Brooke Rd E17 – we will create a brand new studio and community space for local artists and residents to enjoy!
What we’ll do:
- Regenerate the Manual Instruction Centre to provide a studio space for local artists, subject to consent
- Bring to life old walls & spaces
- Give children and young adults the opportunity to learn from our artists
- Provide local, up & coming artists affordable space to hone their craft & showcase their work
- Work with local business to brighten up their buildings & provide artwork for shops
- Become an established and integral part of the E17 Art Trail
- Provide new and original artwork to be displayed in local shops providing addition income for artists and businesses
Why it’s a great idea:
There are a lack of creative spaces and studios for artists. As studio space vanishes and rents increase, urban areas lose artists and art, taking creativity out of our neighbourhoods.
Working alongside the community to bring generic public spaces to life will give skills and opportunities to local young residents, while improving the spaces we all use on a daily basis.
How we’ll get it done:
- Identify properties to convert into studio space & public art workspaces – starting with the Manual Instruction Centre
- Resident artists will put on 1 free workshop a month for the local community
- Speak to local businesses & individuals and get them to donate their walls, shutters to artists
- Use disused shops as pop-up galleries and drop in centres to build awareness of the project
- Create a Community Interest Company to manage the site
- Put all rental income back into the studio space
Similar projects have been undertaken in Miami (Wynwood Walls) and Brooklyn (Bushwick Collective). These projects have ended up re-energising their areas and turning them into a hub of creativity. By developing a new studio as the focal point for the Wood Street area, we will make urban art accessible to the local community.