Drawing Our Future

We are nearly free, aren’t we?

The following film is the outcome come of a series of virtual workshops with participants from the Art for All Community Learning Programme, held during the course of the Art & Action: Making Change in Victorian Britain exhibition. The social realist paintings, Found Drowned, Under an Arch, The Irish Famine and Song of the Shirt by George Watts inform the ideas explored in the animation.

Facilitated by artist Lily Ash Sakula, each workshop invited participants to discuss the paintings, share ideas and explore the themes of the exhibition through the lens of their own experiences. Participants were prompted to give voices to the silent subjects of these paintings and to imagine radically hopeful futures that we could all inhabit.

As Lily Ash Sakula states: "We need art not just to reflect reality but to help us envision what could happen next; because we cannot build a better future without first imagining it."

The film, edited and directed by Lily Ash Sakula, is composed of drawings and recordings made during the workshops with the Woking Women Centre, halow, User Voice and the families programme and in response to resources sent into local schools and HMP YOI Bronzefield.

View the Art and Action Activity Pack Download

With thanks to contributing participants from the following Art for All Community Programme partnerships:
Woking Women’s Support Centre, halow, HMP YOI Bronzefield, Surrey County Council - User Voice and Participation and Watt Gallery Trust’s Family Programme.

Lead Animator:
 Lily Ash Sakula
Sound Design and Music:
 Taha Hassan
With thanks to:
 Dora Ash Sakula and Vania Chavez

The Art & Action: Making Change in Victorian Britain exhibition forms part of external co-curator Dr Chloe Ward’s Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) funded project ‘From Protest to Propaganda: A History of Activist Art in Britain, 1845–1918’. The Arts and Humanities investigate the values and beliefs which underpin both who we are as individuals and how we undertake our responsibilities to our society and to humanity globally. Find out more on the AHRC website.