Croydon Arts Community

Croydon Arts Community

Part of our work with Croydon Council, supported by Arts Council England, is to help to bring together Croydon’s incredible creative community so that we can better support and champion one another’s work, and to further develop Croydon’s creative offer by letting other artists know that they are not making work in total isolation – we believe that artists are better when they stick together, support each other’s work, and share resources, information, experiences and cake. Mainly cake.

Our first port of call was to host a Devoted and Disgruntled event, details of which can be found below:

Devoted and Disgruntled: Croydon Is Changing, How Can The Arts Be A Part Of That Change?

On 2nd May 2017, The Zoo Co hosted a Devoted and Disgruntled event, facilitated by Lee Simpson of Improbable – our brilliant mentor. 

Over 50 members of the Croydon community came to discuss the arts, with lots of conversations surrounding collaboration, development and re-igniting of the Croydon Arts Network (CAN), and how we can put the arts at the forefront of Croydon’s major development stages which are taking place at present. 

Here are some session write ups of just some of the many conversations that took place, and we do encourage any further participants to write up any session notes that haven’t yet been added:

Devoted and Disgruntled:
Session Reports

Does ‘Devoted and Disgruntled’ sum up the feelings of the Croydon arts community?

Written by Liz Sheppard-Jones

This was the question that sixty or so Croydonians gathered to answer at TMRW, the business start-up hub in Croydon High Street, on the evening of Tuesday 2nd May. The event followed a format titled ‘Devoted and Disgruntled‘ (D&D), the umbrella title of a series of arts community events devised by drama company Improbable. This session was facilitated by the Zoo Co Theatre Company… (Click here to continue reading)

Where Do Artists Go To Make Mistakes And Have Bad Ideas In Croydon?

Written by Anita Wadsworth 

I’ve tried to capture the threads of what we discussed. I didn’t record attendance so if you were there at any point: I’m so sorry! Please add to the comments so we can perhaps keep this conversation going. 

In writing this report I’ve had a chance to reflect on why I called the session. It was around some thoughts/frustration/maybe just indigestion around making art in the Borough and how we can tackle them together. 

Croydon is growing (Hooray! Yes! Excellent!) new spaces and platforms for artistic product but do we have sufficient spaces/opportunities for the processes that underpin testing and exploring in the first place, IN Croydon? Are we building solid artistic foundations from which good and steady practices can emerge and remain in the Borough? If artists can put ON work here but not grow, test and develop work and make mistakes here, will they STAY here?… (Click here to continue reading)

To download a PDF of the full session report notes, please click the link below:

Tuesday 2nd May @ TMRW Hub, Croydon – Hosted by Zoo Co and Improbable

What’s Here? Mapping The Arts In Croydon

Written by Amy Clare Tasker

This is a list of galleries, theatres, dance, opera, music, and rehearsal spaces in Croydon.

Massive hat tip to Janet Smith of Croydon Arts Show, which will soon be transitioning from radio to podcast. @croydonartsshow on Twitter, stay tuned.

Thanks to all who attended, brainstormed, and googled!

(Click here to continue reading)

Creating A Network Of Artists To Increase The Power And Influence Of Artists In Croydon

Written by Sarah Finigan

Summary of discussion:
We have partners/allies already that we could plug into in the form of Equity and the other entertainment unions.
There are also existing networks:
* Croydon Arts Network (who are currently finding it a challenge to keep the network going – they need more volunteers)
* Just Croydon (which is broader than just the arts)
* Get Out More Promotions (Fb page and website which are a listings service)
Do we need a new FB / Twitter account?
We should reinvigorate the existing Croydon Arts Network, rather than reinventing the wheel by starting something new. And it should be interdisciplinary

What are the network goals?
* getting the word out about our events
* calling for support / skills swapping
* uniting against Arts cuts
* in person gatherings: monthly / 3 monthly?
* liaising with businesses to sponsor arts in Croydon
* creating a buzz about the arts in Croydon
Meetings are key as it’s important to meet in person, not just online.

 (Click here to continue reading)