• Futurology: The Black Country 2024

      Hewitt, Andy; Jordan, Mel (2004)
      The collaborators developed, curated and organized an exhibition of work produced by artists and school children; all working together to examine the social-economic conditions of the Black Country. Informed by the histories of practitioners such as John Latham, Barbara Steveni, David Harding, Stephen Willats and others; the project was concerned with the relationship between arts practice, regeneration and education. The focus was upon conceptual thinking, rather than material output. Artists worked in collaboration with school children on issues concerning culture-led regeneration with the intent of questioning the role of children within such change. The artists explored and critiqued notions of collaboration and participation when aligned with the relationship between education and social control. Hewitt and Jordan began by negotiating enough critical space for the project to be attractive to nationally respected contemporary artists. They sought to convince Creative Partnerships to allow the artists to make a proposal without a brief. They matched the artists to appropriate schools where they then developed individual approaches to working with the students. In some cases, the young people became the subject of the work, and others encouraged them to take responsibility for the finished artwork.
    • Show Flat

      Jordan, Mel; Hewitt, Andy (2003)
      “Showflat” examined the critical and complicit roles of culture within the future planning and redevelopment of Sheffield. The artists’ intent was to redevelop their studio space into a studio apartment, predicting changes due to urban regeneration. The artists’ studio was situated in a rapidly changing area where creative industry had thrived in Sheffield. It was increasingly clear that most would be unable to afford increases in rent as corporate business and inner city housing developments began to be attracted by the ‘alternative’ reputation of the area. The intent of the work was to transform the studio into a space where a critical discussion could happen concerning the function of art within city planning.