Stanley Picker Gallery was pleased to welcome back The Gate and to reunite them with Kingston School of Art Fashion with whom they were partnered during The Origin Online, developing costumes for the inhabitants of The Origin. These costumes were worn during public performances by KSA Dance and can be viewed here (insert link to appropriate slide show)
Led by KSA Fashion graduate Sebastian Nissl, The Gate visited The Origin exhibition and, after an explore around, tried on some of the costumes. Sebastian then delivered a weaving tutorial using reclaimed strips of fabric. There were lots of different approaches to this, and each of The Gate had their own preferred technique. The group were given individual panels to work on, alongside a group tapestry that would later be added to by other visitors to The Origin exhibition and boat, becoming a version of a project flag.
Sebastian had also prepared net-like garments that could be woven into for decoration and become new costumes for The Origin inhabitants. Lebake, a member of The Gate, had been particularly looking forward to continuing her fashion design and had brought along images of her mother in traditional Nigerian clothing as inspiration. Taking the embroidered forms of her mother’s outfit as a starting point, Lebake weaved similar designs into a t-shirt and dress using vibrant colours – the results were quite remarkable, and all enjoyed trying them on as now fully fledged members of The Origin community.
The Gate are also musicians and joined us for an afternoon of collaboration with the University of the Highlands and Islands, contemplating themes of community and creativity during lockdown. Duane (AKA Mr Amazing) shared examples of his lockdown music and inspirational quotes which he uses as samples on collaborative tracks with his friends and fellow musicians from The Gate.
The Gate is an arts and resource centre for people with learning disabilities based in Shepherds Bush, London. Largely we’re an arts centre but we see ourselves as a base where people can come and be free to be themselves and express that in a creative manner and we think there should be a Gate on every street corner, for everyone. For more information visit The Gate’s website and Instagram @54thegate
Sebastian Nissl is a Fashion Designer and arts educator who graduated from Kingston School of Art MA Fashion.
Ben Judd’s Stanley Picker Fellowship project The Origin reflects on Britain’s island status, both literal and metaphorical, and how islands shape the communities that live there. The Origin brings together the communities surrounding the Stanley Picker Gallery – from Kingston University students and academics to local networks, charities and residents – and asks them to imagine a classless, stateless, humane society based on common ownership. A temporary community, an experiment in living, a fictional island group. This collaborative project culminated this summer with an installation at the Gallery, a boat on the River Thames and a series of performances, workshops and events – a rehearsal for an alternative future.