Published: 10 July 2024

The curation training panel have been  working with Create London over the past few months learning about art and what is involved in public commissions.  The curation training panel is made up of women with lived experience of the criminal justice system, those seeking practical experience within the arts and a connection to Islington or Holloway prison. The initiative aims to reach women who are usually underrepresented in curation and who are keen to learn more.

The panel had a tour from one of the curators (pictured to the right of the group) who was able to explain the significance of Yinka Shonibare’s work to the interested panel. She advised that the exhibition is about looking at how systems of power affect sites of refuge, debates on public statues and the impact of colonization. There was a room within the exhibition titled Sanctuary City which included replicas of historic buildings that have been considered places of refuge for persecuted and vulnerable groups.  Members of the panel were able to see how the artwork here might be relevant to Holloway Park where we are looking for artwork to acknowledge those who were in the prison that stood on the site. Thinking about what form that might take and what artwork for Holloway Park and the Women’s building might look like. For example there was  work where the identity of the artist featured very strongly with his signature use of dutch wax prints in the statues, but also a spectacular work in bronze which is a much more abstract image about the movement of enslaved people which seemed to be very popular with the panel.Further information about this initiative is to follow as there will be a public meeting held soon to explore what they have learnt.

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