Public Engagement
with Hackney Carers

A four-week, socially-distanced silk painting course held at U7 Lounge on Regent’s Canal in Haggerston, London. The participants were members of Hackney Carers, a small independent charity, many of whom care for their loved ones living with dementia.

People painting in a pub
Some of the Hackney carers working in the U7 lounge

Each participant decorated two pieces of pongee silk, gradually progressing their designs over the four weeks. This began by sketching ideas onto layout paper, then preparing the silk ready for use, followed by painting onto the silk using specialist dyes and finally embellishing their silks using free-hand embroidery.

Floral cyanotypes
Lisa adding metallic details to her floral design

Not only was this a chance to learn new techniques, it also gave the participants some dedicated time to themselves, to express the creative side of their personalities. The group did not know each other before the programme, making the workshops a valuable opportunity to speak frankly with other people sharing similar circumstances.

Floral cyanotypes
Loren with her beautiful floral design
Butterfly painted onto silk