Leigh-on-Sea based artists Graham Harwood and Matsuko Yokokoji, otherwise known as YoHa (which can be translated into English as ‘aftermath’) are working on a project ‘Wrecked’ based around art and citizen science to highlight local knowledge and changes in the industry, society and ecology if the Thames Estuary. Joined by a whole host of local and international artists they are working to engage the community and bring people together to celebrate their surroundings and underline the changes that are happening all around us.
Through an on-going series of participatory workshops, public realm art projects and tasting events the collective are hoping to explore and respond to a changing estuary and generate interest in the intricate stimuli that pave the way for these delicate environments. They have been joined on this pursuit by Critical Art Ensemble, Andy Freeman and Fran Gallardo, with The Arts Catalyst.
The events include:
Fluids and Mud Science (citizen science workshop 1)
Saturday 15 August, 10am – 5pm Meeting Point: Fishermen’s Chapel, New Road, Leigh-on-Sea
Investigate Two Tree Island in this day workshop led by Andy Freeman with Two Tree scientific expert Dr Mark Scrimshaw (Reader in Environmental Chemistry at Brunel University), to explore the use of scientific testing outdoors. Participants will learn about and make observations of a range of gases and contaminants found in the air and water in the Thames estuary using testing kits. Observations will be geotagged using mobile phones and then uploaded to a custom digital map of the locality and shared online.
Wildlife and Not So Wild Life (citizen science workshop 2)
Saturday 22 August 10am – 5pm Meeting Point: Fishermen’s Chapel, New Road, Leigh-on-Sea
Andy Freeman and Mark Scrimshaw with local reserves manager Marc Outen (Essex Wildlife Trust) lead this workshop, which will bring together wildlife spotting, digital technologies and scientific testing of the elements. Get to know your fellow organisms, animals and local inhabitants of this complex nature reserve, including the people and industries that surround it.
Public Tasting: Explore your Tongue
Sunday 30 August 2015, 7pm-8pm. Location: Belton Way Beach, Leigh-on-Sea. Booking not required
Fran Gallardo will lead an open air cooking experiment for using local ingredients. Fran will present intriguing recipes that represent and re-imagine webs of connections between gastronomy and ecology within many environments: from human microbiomes, eels, fungi, geese, ships, landfills and human-made islands. Come and taste, smell and dive into the sensorial experience of the estuary and all its complex delicacies!
Leigh Regatta: Chachacha with Local Ingredients
Sunday 20 September 2015 Location: Leigh-on-Sea (exact location announced soon). Booking not required
Before Autumn sets in; Fran Gallardo will present one more chance for a tongue first exploration. Come and join us for a sensory undressing of the estuary.
Following these events the second part of the series, ‘Graveyard of Lost Species’ will see the ‘Souvenir’ – a 40ft Thames Bawley, rescued from the estuary mud, cleaned and reconditioned before being sited in Old Leigh. The artists will then be on a drive to gather local knowledge about lost species of marine wildlife, landmarks and local dialects that are now vanishing. The boat will then have phrases and names to represent the research carved into the boat and it will be sailed onto the marshes as a monument to remember the importance of the local environment.
Regular customers YoHa got in touch with Solopress to arrange leaflets and banners to advertise the event, speaking to Matsuko Yokokoji she said that working with Solopress felt like the obvious choice. “We’ve been printing with Solopress for the last 12 years, and known them since they were a small company. We like supporting local printers and we are so pleased to see them grow and still be so efficient.”
For more information about Wrecked, please go the website here.
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