Support Structures for Support Structures is a fellowship programme initiated by Serpentine that supports ten artists and collectives working at the intersection of art, spatial politics and community practice. The fellowship consists of a grant of 10,000 GBP and invites the fellows to join a network for support, workshops and mentoring.
Support Structures for Support Structures is conceived in collaboration with Sumayya Vally, the architect behind this year’s Serpentine Pavilion designed by Counterspace, and Serpentine’s Civic team. The initiative is grounded in the history and current work of Serpentine’s Civic and Education programme, which for over a decade, has been supporting artists to work with people and communities across London to respond to the complexities of social change. Announced on the occasion of the 20th Pavilion designed by Vally’s studio Counterspace, this initiative creates a legacy for this unique commission.
The fellowship recognises that practitioners working across art, spatial politics and community practice are often not supported by grant programmes or institutions in a sustainable way. Support Structures for Support Structures aims to bridge this gap by creating pathways for learning and exchange amongst the fellowship cohort.
The fellowship was awarded through a nomination process and a selection panel consisting of: Sepake Angiama, Director, Iniva; Pooja Agrawal, CEO, Public Practice; Leopold Lambert, Editor in chief, The Funambulist; Rita Keegan, artist and Sumayya Vally, Counterspace, chaired by Amal Khalaf, Civic Curator, Serpentine.
Barby Asante is an artist, curator, educator and healer in training. Her practice is concerned with the politics of place, space and the ever-present histories and legacies of slavery and colonialism. Her work explores memory and archival injustice through re-collecting, collating, excavating and mapping stories and narratives, through collective writing, re-enactment and creating spaces for transformation, ritual and healing. With a deep interest in Black feminist and decolonial methodologies, Barby also embeds within her work notions of collective study, countless ways of knowing and dialogical practices that embrace being and breathing together.
Beverley Bennett is an artist-filmmaker whose work revolves around the possibilities of drawing, performance and collaborative experiments with sound. Her practice is connected to multiple ways of making; a concern with the importance of sound in art, an investigation into the idea of The Archive and collaboration. Working with other creatives, community members, young children, and their families, Bennett provides spaces for collaboration and a point of focus to unpack ideas around what constitutes an art practice and for whom art is generated.
Jacob V Joyce
Jacob V Joyce is a non-binary artist with a community facing practice that amplifies and nourishes both historical and emerging queer and decolonial narratives. Joyce’s work ranges from afro-futurist world building workshops to mural painting, comic books, performance art and punk music with their band Screaming Toenail. Joyce has published books and illustrated campaigns for Amnesty International and Global Justice Now.
Abbas Zahedi is an interdisciplinary artist whose practice blends contemporary philosophy, poetics, and social dynamics with performance, sound, sculpture, and moving-image. With an emphasis on how personal and collective histories interweave, Zahedi makes connections with people involved in the particular situations which he focuses upon, inviting these others into the conversation in his work.
Blak Outside is a multidisciplinary creative collective providing culturally diverse and inclusive events. The annual Blak Outside Festival is a grassroots, intergenerational event supportive of working class social housing residents and the QTIBIPOC community. Carole Wright, founding member of Blak Outside, is a creative urban activist and community gardener. Blak Outside builds on thirty years of Carole’s community work serving underserved communities.
FerArts is an artist-led collective platforming underrepresented and socially-engaged creatives under 30. A growing community of 48 artists from across inner city London founded in 2014 by photographer and curator Amanda Fernandez. The collective based in North Kensington advocates for marginalised voices in the creative sector using art, photography and film to illustrate diverse perspectives on culture and identity. FerArts produces community-led projects engaging with social housing residents, immigrants & refugees and young people.
Nawi Collective is a London-based black women and femmes’ vocal collective. Singing for justice, to reclaim our time. Singing for our ancestors.
Other Cinemas is a multidisciplinary project focused on the transformational power of film; whether that is sharing Black and non-white films in ways and spaces that aren’t alienating to their communities; creating networks for Black and non-white creatives to work, learn and collaborate; or documenting the stories of Black and non-white communities. Based in Brent and founded by Turab Shah and Arwa Aburawa, filmmakers committed to collaborative and radical ways of making and sharing films, they host free screenings, discussions and debates and run a film school for Black and non-white filmmakers.
Skin Deep makes space for Black creatives and creatives of colour to work towards justice through cultural production. Through live events, an online platform and print, they build capacity for artists and activists to think beyond crisis and survival, and dream of just futures. They want their work to contribute to a different kind of scaffolding and support for their communities, that builds capacity, redistributes resources, and contributes to a legacy of hope, justice and creativity. Skin Deep is Anu Henriques, Sylvia Hong, Nkenna Akunna, Georgie Johnson and Hannah Azuonye.
RESOLVE Collective is an interdisciplinary design collective that combines architecture, engineering, technology and art to address social challenges, delivering projects and publications in UK and Europe, that look toward realising just and equitable visions of change in our built environment. They provide platforms for new ideas, whilst building resilience in communities, designing with and for young people and under-represented groups. Here, “design” encompasses both physical and systemic intervention, more than aesthetic value, it is a mechanism for political and socio-economic change.
Support Structures for Support Structures is made possible through the generous support of Agnes Gund, Sarah Arison, Suzanne Deal Booth, Aditya Mittal, Nicoletta Fiorucci Russo, Felicity Waley-Cohen, Barry and Laura Townsley and Andrew Cohen.