An exhibition of art created by young offenders from the Hackney area is to be unveiled at City Hall later today by Assembly Member and Mayor’s Youth Ambassador James Cleverly.
The paintings explore the issues which lead young people into crime and will be on display at City Hall until March 20th. Speaking ahead of this evening’s launch Cleverly said such projects “can help build self-esteem and raise aspiration”.
Cleverly added: “the exhibition gives real insight into the lives of the youngsters, especially in terms of postcode rivalry, showing the pride but also the fear and anxiety the youngsters have attached to their postcodes. We need to work with young people on these issues to support and guide them so that they grasp the opportunity to turn their lives into ones of real success.”
The programme is run by Hands Inc which received funding from Team Hackney.
Eileen Bellot, Director, Hands Inc said “The young people involved often feel they are rarely given the opportunity to voice their feelings and thoughts positively. This exhibition represents a platform for them to do this creatively. By engaging in society through art, it helps them to raise their levels of personal achievement.”
“Collectively, their voices say ‘look, listen, understand me and celebrate my achievements’. Inner Art is not a typical art exhibition, here there is no ‘good’ or ‘bad’ art. What matters, is the process of creating and feeling rather than the end product. However, the art object becomes a tool to express feelings and thoughts that are difficult to talk about. By thinking about what they have made, participants can reflect on the issues expressed.”