A nationally renowned artist and writer praised by David Cameron in the wake of last year’s riots is bringing his expertise on filling empty shops to Boston this week in collaboration with the Transported project.
Dan Thompson, founder of Revolutionary Arts, has been working with Transported to open a ‘pop-up’ shop in Boston, which will showcase some of the last events of the Transported consultation programme. Dan is an expert in using empty shops having set up the Empty Shops network, and wrote Pop Up Business for Dummies. He also initiated the #riotcleanup Twitter movement after the riots last summer, which led to Dan starting #wewillgather – a Twitter based initiative that encourages people to do good things for their own communities.
David Cameron used Dan as an example of great British leadership in his conference speech after the riots: “The things that will really deliver success are not politicians or government. It’s the people of Britain, and the spirit of Britain. Dan Thompson watched the riots unfold on television. But he didn’t sit there and say ‘the council will clean it up.’ He got on the internet. He sent out a call. And with others, he started a social movement. People picked up their brooms and reclaimed their streets.”
Transported is delighted that Dan will be joining them to help them fully utilise an empty space in Boston: the Community Rooms, next to Age UK on the corner of Wide Bargate and Strait Bargate.
Dan Thompson said: “Empty shops are spaces full of potential and Transported is going to unlock all of that. Local people are going to learn skills, take over the high street and experience a great range of activity in coming months.”
Events are already planned for the space, which will be fully open from 9am on Wednesday 10th July. Neil Baker from award winning production company Electric Egg will be Transported’s animator in residence from Wednesday 10th July to Tuesday 16th July inclusive, working on a project about Migration in Boston Borough and South Holland. The shop will be open from 9am to 5pm every day, during which time anyone can go in and watch him at work or look at his drawings from the research period.
Neil Baker said: “Boston and South Holland is an area of mass migration of both humans and wildlife. Over the last 10 or 15 years the area has seen a significant migration of people moving to the area from across Europe, and this area around the Wash is also known as a place that thousands of birds have migrated to with a variety of species coming and going throughout the year. I am creating an animation that explores these differing migrations.”
Also taking place in the shop is a workshop by Tim Denton, who previously did a mark making workshop in Boston Stump. Tim will be exploring pantographs and how they can make different kinds of drawings, which will allow participants to create a truly unique piece of art that they can take home. The workshop takes place on Saturday 13 July from 10am to 3pm, is suitable for all ages, and is free of charge.
Tim Denton said: “My intention is to explore drawing without the user needing to have any drawing skills as such. The intention is for people to come and interact with the objects and have fun, whilst at the same time ending up with something to take away.”
The Eloquent Fold will be in the Transported Shop on Wednesday 17 July with their craft workshop Origami Fleet. Artists Phiona Richards and Carole Miles will work with participants to create a fleet of origami boats. These will then form a temporary art installation whereby the boats are placed on a reflective surface inside a covered space so that the fleet can be recorded, and experienced, before the mini exhibition is dismantled. Participants will have a range of materials to work from, many of which have had another life or purpose. The workshop takes place between 10am and 3.30pm.
For more information, have a look at our Events page under www.transportedart.com/events/.