Pattern Making for Beginners


Featuring six different maps and set out like a fête, visitors moved from stall to stall, informing and directing the maps with their own marks. As a research and collection centre, it enabled experimentation with a sense of place to uncover micro stories and patterns; investigating community formation through dialogue and play Over 150 visitors attended this event during the five hours the doors were open . Pattern making for beginners proposed creative cartographies as a way of imaging/imagining new forms of social cohesion: a day-long event at the Hackney Wicked festival to exhibit and further HTAP’s ongoing research into community formation. The SIX MAPS…. ‘The Postcode Map’ (aka Starburst/Mother map): As an introduction to participation, the viewer enters the exhibition to find the Post code map. ‘Estimate your home postcode in relation to Hackney Wick (exhibition location) and link the two’.

Curated by Miriam Kings and Marsha Bradfield, with Lucy Tomlins, Alison Barnes, David Woosnam and Christina Mintrense

  1. ‘The Postcode Map’ (aka Starburst/Mother map)
The Postcode Map’ situated at the entrance of the exhibition & introduced the idea of viewer participation.

2. ‘Experience, desire and the nonsensical’  A Board game  A table-top version of the Hackney map where revealing sculptural patterns are formed out of individual experiences, desire and fantasy rooted within Hackney. Place the counters where you feel most appropriate. Counters included: favourite place for a pint, favourite cafe, somewhere you wish to conserve, somewhere beautiful, somewhere you wished to destroy, (bulldozer symbol), a place where you’ve experienced crime, a ladder to the moon, and ‘where you would put Richard Branson’. The board game became a hub of the exhibition, like a campfire people  sharing stories about their experiences of Hackney.

‘Experience, desire and the nonsensical’ Lucy Tomlins, 2009Typecast’ Share your opinions and descriptions of Hackney and help create a landscape of text. Alison Barnes

3. ‘Secrets’ Unburden yourself on the Hackney map of secrets

This map was covered by a confessional style cloth. The visitor would write their secret on a piece of paper, put it in an envelope and post it into a box. Then they would mark on the map with a red cross where that secret happened in the borough of Hackney.

4.’Objects and Keepsakes’ Displayed on an old shelving unit, visitors picked up the object to see its story explained on the attached luggage label. Each object was marked on a bus map route displayed on the wall. Objects were collected from HTAP’s contacts. 31 people donated an object that meant something to them, or if it was too precious or big to donate, a photo of the object in a frame.

‘Objects’ Miriam Kings (left of image- displayed on an old shelving unit

The main aim of the work was to represent communities involved with HTAP that wouldn’t be there on the day, communities that donated objects included the Turkish-Cypriot Community Centre, African Caribbean Reunion, and the Pub on the Park.

5. ‘Rumour as Repetition: A Conceptual Study’: Listen and repeat 

Marsha_Bradfield Rumour as Repetition: A Conceptual Study

An oral and written survey: Posturing as pseudo science and/or live art, this performative exchange involves (1) soliciting anecdotal reflections on hearing/spreading rumours; (2) presenting an example rumour (Hackney related); (3) collecting and classifying rumours. The work from this one-day interactive event was (re)presented in the exhibition: ‘in/flux’.  HTAP’s Hackney Wicked exhibition used dialogue and play to investigate community formation. Co curated by Marsha Bradfield, Alison Barnes, Miriam Kings, Lucy Tomlins, and David Woosnam

As part of Hackney WickED Festival 2009

Hackney WIcked Festival

Experimental Service & networking event for faith group Christ’s Church Spitalfields. 

Aim – to create dialogue by mapping

  • A Board Game, (pick up counters, and place where you see fit -i.e. your favourite place for breakfast, for a pint, or a place of beauty, or a place you wished to destroy.)  A Tower Hamlets re-make of artist Lucy Tomlins’ board game.  Participants saw an aerial view of their experiences and desires for the borough, and discussed their counter choices, sharing stories of the borough over half an hour.
  • Journey to work on grid paper with coloured pens
  • Regather for a short overview and opportunities to re-tell heard stories

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