TALK: James Beighton Explores Social Clay in Middlesbrough
Date: 01 October 2022
Time: 3:00 pm - 4:00 pm
The talk is part of our Social Clay Festival – see details of the full programme here.
There is no need to book, just come along on the day and join us in The Dining Room.
The Farmer’s Arms, Lowick Green – LA12 8DT
Joining us from Tees Valley Arts, James Beighton will talk through examples of how historical ceramic practice within his own home town of Middlesbrough supported social change, and in turn, provided inspiration for contemporary social practice amongst artists.
James will examine the 19th century Linthorpe and Middlesbrough Potteries as well as the Scoria brick manufacture and how they have provided inspiration for contemporary projects including New Linthorpe (2014-2017) and The Exchange (2022) by Layla Khoo.
This event is part of The Farmer’s Arms Social Clay Festival.
Main Image: The Exchange by Layla Khoo. Photo credit: Jason Hynes.
About the Speaker:
James is Executive Director of Tees Valley Arts, a charity that uses the arts to support social change. He has led the organisation since 2017 and has overseen the move of the charity to its new home on the Redcar seafront where he leads a small team on the delivery of The Redcar Palace as a new cultural venue for the borough. Taking on the space during lockdown has provided an opportunity to rethink what role an arts organisation can play in supporting communities as they emerge from the challenges of the pandemic. Crucial to this has been the recognition we needed to move from being an organisation that works with communities to one that is part of and helps to build communities. Young people have become a key focus of our activities through establishing Blooming Youth Collective, a peer led young people’s programme aimed at 16-24 year olds and which now has a membership of around 60 people. We have also used the government Kickstart initiative to reduce barriers for people from socially and economically diverse backgrounds from finding employment within the arts. So far we have created 26 new positions through this scheme which is more than any other cultural venue in the North East. 3 people from our first cohort of 10 have been retained by the organisation and now make up the core of our team.
Prior to joining Tees Valley Arts he was Founding Curator at MIMA in Middlesbrough. He studied for a BA & MA in English Literature at Leicester University. He is currently completing a PhD examining the visual arts in the Tees Valley region as an aspect of its cultural heritage.