Schools
A Sense of Place
2008-2011
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Click here to download the online publication A Sense of Place.

A Sense of Place was Chisenhale Gallery's ground-breaking programme of artists' projects with young people (2008-2011). The results transformed the gallery’s approach to education, learning and Offsite commissioning, participatory practice and how we relate to our local audiences. The online publication reviews and documents the programme’s achievements, and aims to share with others – particularly artists, curators and teachers – some of the insights discovered along the way.

The online publication is introduced by Chisenhale Director Polly Staple, with essays by Laura Wilson (Chisenhale Offsite & Education Organiser), educator and curator Cathy Haynes, and the writer Anna Minton, alongside insights on taking part in the programme from teachers, pupils, and artists including texts by Amalia Pica, Ruth Ewan and Simon & Tom Bloor.

The programme

Over three years Chisenhale commissioned artists with specific interests in collaboration and direct engagement with social, historical and cultural contexts, to work on a series of projects around Chisenhale’s east London neighbourhood and with three Tower Hamlets schools: Bishop Challoner Catholic Collegiate College, Langdon Park Secondary School and St. Paul's Way Trust School. The project was devised as a multi-part programme to help young people learn about their local geography and heritage, and to develop methods for sharing this research with other young people and the wider community through a series of public artworks and events.



In Year 1 we worked with artists Simon and Tom Bloor, Public Works and Harold Offeh. To see the work they made with our partner schools, please click here.



In Year 2 artist Ruth Ewan worked across all three partner schools to investigate the past and present struggles of east London. As an outcome Ewan presented Chisenhale’s first Offsite commission: Dreadnoughts – a series of guided walking tours around east London led by invited experts. For more on Dreadnoughts please click here.


In Year 3 artist Amalia Pica was commissioned to work across the three schools, culminating in the Offsite art work: I am Tower of Hamlets, as I am in Tower of Hamlets, just like a lot of other people are (2011-12). For more information please click here.

Further information
In June 2012 Chisenhale Gallery held an event to discuss key ideas surrounding A Sense of Place, for more click here.

Out of A Sense of Place also came Chisenhale Gallery’s monthly youth forum Propeller, for local young people aged 15-20. Click here to visit Propeller’s blog.

Chisenhale Gallery received an investment from Deutsche Bank and Arts & Business to develop their education programme. The Arts & Business Investment Programme was funded by Arts Council England. A Sense of Place was also supported by The Ernest Cook Trust.

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