‘Unexpected Engagement’ is the first solo show by artist Jason Wilsher-Mills. The work was created during Jason’s Square Peg Residency with Artlink Hull during UK City of Culture 2017.
The residency was an opportunity for an artist who identifies as disabled to work with Artlink throughout the year, responding to the Square Peg programme and Hull in general. Jason’s approach, inspired by his long history of working with communities, was to engage a wide range of different people in Hull in a series of workshops, to enable them to tell their own stories through art. This in turn has influenced the creation of his own work for the exhibition.
This residency has inspired a whole new collection of multi-media work by Jason that can be viewed and interacted with in the exhibition. It includes characters such as ‘East Hull Elvis’, ‘The X-Factor Princess’, and ‘Mario Lanza and the Stolen Hedge Trimmer’. Artworks in the exhibition will include digitally painted wallpaper, sculpture-including augmented reality, 3D printed figures, and images in vibrant lightboxes.
Jason says: “The Square Peg Residency enabled me to engage with individuals from diverse communities in Hull. Through the workshops participants felt able to share their own unique stories with me, which ultimately demonstrated that everyone has a story to tell, it’s just that sometimes we don’t have time to listen or hear them. Although sometimes stories were sad, or difficult to hear, there was always humour and hope there. These stories have inspired me to create new work which hopefully serves as a tribute to those engaged with throughout the residency.”
“Martin Green, Director Hull 2017, comments: “We’re delighted to have been able to support the Square Peg residency programme at Artlink, which is one of Hull’s cultural gems. There’s been an incredible variety of artists throughout this important year for the city, and I am pleased that Jason will be showing the work from his residency during the first part of 2018. His use of colour also means it will be a vivid start to the year.”
hearing loops, BSL interpretation, wheelchair access, lift, accessible toilets on ground and first floor