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S for Southend 2024

Focal Point Gallery

Focal Point Galleries community exhibition ‘S for Southend’ is back, showcasing artworks made by local residents and artists of all ages during 2023. We are delighted to share works made by participants across our learning programme and in collaboration with local organisations and charities to champion the abundant creativity in Southend. Works includes those created in Children’s Art Club, Contemporary Elders, Digifest and our local Schools programmes with Cedar Hall, St Nicholas, Estuary, Briscoe, Darlinghurst, Janet Duke, Chase and West Leigh. There will also be work from Southend Youth Council and One Love.

‘Messages in the Sand’ is an intergenerational project involving a group of FPG’s Contemporary Elders and families living in Southend, led by Lora and Marley (Wyrd Flora), who together explored what Southend and the sea means to them, now and in the future. During the run of the group exhibition, ‘Storm Warning: what does climate change mean for coastal communities?’ participants took part in a series of collaborative creative workshops, co-creating an ambitious artwork that highlights and explores what actions can be taken to protect our natural environment. Also included are some of the Contemporary Elders’ research into the Canvey Island Floods of 1953. This project set out to give the tools to empower the oldest and youngest members of our community in skill-sharing and conversations that spark creativity, positivity, and a connection to the land we call home. Made possible with support from Art Fund through Reimagine grants.

To coincide with ‘S for Southend’, ‘Relay’ will run on the Big Screen Southend for a third year.. This is an initiative that was first started in 2021, during the lockdown 3.0 due to COVID-19, as a way to support local artists and showcasing their work, in order to continue to celebrate the extraordinary talent found in our City Every three and half weeks, we will be platforming the work of three Southend-based creatives. Each artist will be invited to share original work, research or work in progress in the form of a one-minute video. These works will be shared weekly on Big Screen Southend, as well as on our website and Instagram feed. Each participating artist will in turn be asked to nominate another Southend-based practitioner to feature in the programme, concluding after three rounds, with a total of nine artists presented across Focal Point Gallery’s digital platforms.

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