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Use Art as an Activist!

31 July 2017 by Stef

Front cover of Seleena Laverne Day’s ‘Brown Girl’ zine

As we come to the final weeks of Art of Solidarity, an exhibition of vibrant Cuban posters from the 1960s and 70s showing solidarity with African liberation movements including the opposition to South African Apartheid and Angola’s fight for independence, we will be taking inspiration from these revolutionary Cuban poster artists to offer visitors the opportunity to participate in events that aim to further explore the capacity of art forms to be a powerful tool of activism and a means to create dialogue.

For the closing weekend of Art of Solidarity, we will be exploring activism through self- publishing, in an artist-led workshop delivered by Manchester based zine-maker Seleena Laverne Daye.

A zine is a small circulation, self- published work, normally produced very cheaply using a photocopier and distributed through friends, fairs or by sale online. A zine can cover any topic from politics, popular culture, film, photography, history, food to perzines (personal zines), which focus on the individual experiences of the writer. Due to the lack of censorship within this medium, zines can also offer their authors an empowering platform to challenge established narratives and share their views with others, arguably forming an important record of social history that may explore viewpoints that are marginalised in mainstream media channels.  Read more…

Art of Activism – free cinema workshop

30 June 2017 by Stef

Join us on 15th July for Scalarama’s ‘I Want to be a Cinema’ workshop designed to support anyone interested in running their own film events

As we come to the final weeks of Art of Solidarity at the International Slavery Museum, an exhibition of vibrant Cuban posters from the 1960s and 70s showing solidarity with African liberation movements, we will be taking inspiration from these revolutionary Cuban poster artists to offer visitors the opportunity to participate in events that aim to further explore the capacity of art forms to be powerful tools of activism and a means to create dialogue.

Protest Through film

With DIY cinema projects such as volunteer- run Liverpool Small Cinema, Liverpool Radical Film Festival, exciting new film projects such as the Kinematic and Empty Spaces, as well as grassroots community ventures such as recent pop-up screenings with local filmmakers- including Sandi Hughes- as part of Granby Four Streets Market, it’s safe to say that our city already has an impressive legacy of DIY film programming. However, how does someone get started doing their own film screenings, licencing films or getting the word out about these types of events?  Read more…

Refugee Week: are we still a city of sanctuary?

16 June 2017 by Stef

MaMa choir performance, image from Migrant Artists Mutual Aid

Recent events have left many of us feeling that our community is increasingly vulnerable and divided. Refugee Week (19-25 June) provides us with an opportunity to create a more welcoming place to live, by coming together to celebrate people who have overcome incredible adversity.

To celebrate Refugee Week, the International Slavery Museum is hosting an exciting programme of free events and activities. Migrant Artists Mutual Aid (MaMa) will showcase the unifying force of music with a choir performance, that includes songs from member’s childhoods. MaMa Choir is a cross national network of women, mothers, migrants, artists, academics and activists who work together to campaign for justice in the migration system.

We are presenting short film screenings featuring Chasing Borders, a short film created by young people working with the BFI and Watershed Cinema. Chasing Borders is the heart-breaking story of a young person’s walk to safety. We are also screening Call Me Kuchu, a fascinating documentary highlighting the struggles of persecuted LGBT+ people in Uganda. The experiences of LGBT+ refugees can often be overlooked and many experience violent discrimination even once they have reached counties like the U.K.

For those who like to get hands on, get creative in our Faces of Change badge making workshop and help us create a refugee welcome display. This display will feature your pictures and stories of refugee experiences, including those from the Dunkirk refugee camp in France. The Dunkirk refugee camp was destroyed by a blaze this year along with the few remaining belongings and shelter that the occupants had left, though they continue to be supported by dedicated volunteer groups including Dunkirk Legal. With your help we can create a display to inspire museum visitors and to share our support with vulnerable people around the world.

Join in, learn and have fun to show that we are still a city of sanctuary.

For more information on all the Refugee Week events and activities taking place please click here.



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Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

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We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.