Åbäke is a group of four graphic designers who do a lot more than you might expect. They are self confessed ‘content’ junkies. Patrick Lacey is from the UK, Kajsa Stahl from Sweden, Benjamin Reichen and Maki Suzuki from France. They decided to work together in the summer of 2000. Their work includes posters, CD designs, furniture pieces, and installations in art galleries and public spaces. Åbäke has done a lot of work involving fashion and music, and it also has another company called Kitsune, which is a clothing and record label. Åbäke also co-edit a magazine, Sexymachinery. They are also singers, painters, and photographers, members of bands, furniture designers, curators, fashion designers, DJs, teachers, and pen manufacturers! They have recently worked with A Camp, Air, Daftpunk, Martin Margiela and Hussein Chalayan. Previously they have developed two projects with the Serpentine Gallery. Most recently they worked at Westmead Care Home in 2010 with Serpentine’s Skills Exchange Project that brings together artists, care-workers and elderly people, as well as a project undertaken in collaboration with Dyslexia Action, titled Neveroddoreven.
Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad is a London based designer with a background in photography and an interest in social space. He graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2008, establishing a cross-disciplinary practice that produces work ranging from interior spaces, recipes, furniture to photography, public interventions, and products. Recent projects include facilitating the sharing of aubergine recipes amongst a community in the face of change (London Festival of Architecture), designing a concept hotel room (Lloyd Hotel, Amsterdam), aiding gallery visitors to construct, document and consume their creations (Architecture Association, London), and appropriating the hammer into a tool for sound (YAMAHA). Bahbak is currently initiating design projects, reacting to commissions, teaching, and forcing disparate collaborations, as well as leading a design workshop at the Centre for Possible Studies concerning communication in public in collaboration with students of Westminster Academy. For more information please see his website.
CAMP is a Mumbai-based collective that tests the ground between art and the public. Working with people involved in the infrastructures of water, cable TV and the internet, CAMP have developed temporary TV and radio stations, annotated film archives and websites. For the Edgware Road Project, CAMP have created edgwareroad.org, an open publishing platform for local research to be distributed as journals, placemats, pamphlets and webcasts. Their residency is a collaboration with Gasworks and The Arts Catalyst.
Susan Hefuna takes up everyday aspects of life in her work. Working in photography, video, drawing, sculpture, and digital media, much of Hefuna’s work is informed by her dual heritage (German–Egyptian). Hefuna has since 2009 worked in collaboration with students at Westminster Academy as well as choreographer Gill Clarke and artists Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad on a series of festivals and events in the neighbourhood. In October 2011, work Hefuna conducted in London and in Cairo with Mina Noshy of SAWA Workshops at the Townhouse Gallery, resulted in a Two-day Learning Camp on Speaker’s Corner featuring installations, workshops and dance performances. Her residency is undertaken in collaboration with Townhouse Gallery in Cairo.
Lamia Joreige‘s work explores notions of archive through writing, installation and film and video production. She is co-founder of the Beirut Art Center and among many exhibitions, has developed projects for the Sharjah and Venice Biennials. She is engaging in ongoing cinema investigations on the Edgware Road. Her residency is undertaken in collaboration with The Delfina Foundation.
Hiwa K is an artist and musician who is interested in informal knowledge, performativity and the artist as amateur. Born in Iraq, he is now based in Germany. On the Edgware Road, Hiwa has created a 1970s revival band, recalling music and politics from Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq and Lebanon. While in residence in 2010, Hiwa K intiated neoliberalism study group and band Chicago Boys: while we were singing, they were dreaming which has gone on to develop as a project and has toured several organisations and countries since its first performances in London in March 2010. His residency is undertaken in collaboration with The Showroom, where he has co-curated Estrangement, an ongoing exchange between artists in Poland and Iraq.
Formed in 2004, no.w.here is an artist run space in London where the place of the moving image within contemporary art can be explored and expanded. They produce projects, events, facilities, workshops and education programmes. On the Edgware Road, no.where work with actors Khalid Abdalla and Cressida Trew to recall histories of Britain’s Free Cinema movement, producing a collaborative film made by those with links to the neighbourhood.
Actor Khalid Abdalla, known for his lead role in the film The Kite Runner, spent his youth on the Edgware Road. He is currently producer of In the Last Days of the City, a feature length film shot in Cairo, Baghdad, Beirut, Alexandria and Berlin. Abdalla and collaborator Cressida Trew link the Free Cinema School to global independent cinema networks. His residency is undertaken in collaboration with Townhouse Gallery in Cairo.
Marwan Rechmaoui studied Fine Arts in the United States. He lives and works in Beirut. He has taken part in many exhibitions and projects, including: Unveiled: New Art from the Middle East, the Sharjah Biennial, Homeworks (Beirut) and the Townhouse Gallery (Cairo). His investigation of the Edgware Road can be seen at The Centre for Possible Studies in August and September 2010. His residency is undertaken with Ashkal Alwan: The Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts.
Wael Shawky lives and works in Alexandria, Egypt. His works include Télématch Sadat, a presentation of the events surrounding the assassination of Sadat in 1981 re-enacted by children and Al-Aqsa Park, an animated film installation in which the Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem is displayed as a fairground carousel. His work has been exhibited at the Queens Museum of Art, New York; the Riwaq Biennale, Palestine; the Moscow Biennial, and Ashkal Alwan, Beirut. His residency is undertaken in collaboration with Townhouse Gallery in Cairo.
Rania Stephan was born in Beirut. She has worked as a sound engineer, editor, first assistant and producer with renowned filmmakers including Simone Bitton and Elia Suleiman. Her filmography includes: Tribe (1993), Attempt at Jealousy (1995), My First Camera (1998), Arrest at Manara (2003), Wastelands (2005), Lebanon/War (2006) and most recently The Three Disappearances of Soad Hosni (2011). While in residence at the Centre for Possible Studies Rania continued her research on the legendary Egyptian film star Soad Hosni, rumoured to have died mysteriously in the Edgware Road neighbourhood. Her residency is undertaken with Ashkal Alwan: The Lebanese Association for Plastic Arts.
Ultra-red is a sound art collective that includes artists, researchers and organisers from a range of social movements. Collectively, the group have produced radio broadcasts, performances, recordings, installations, texts and public space actions featured on their fair-use online record label, Public Record. Ultra-red work with students at St. Marylebone School and local organisations on an opera that explores the politics of citizenship and migration. Their residency is undertaken in collaboration with Raven Row.
Emily Wardill’s work explores how social meanings are projected onto objects, and throws such processes into reverse. Her deconstructed filmic and performative exercises are at once formal and hallucinatory, emphasising the irreducible qualities of the material. Based in London, Wardill is a Senior Lecturer at Central Saint Martins College of Art and winner of the 2010 annual Film London Jarman award. Previously she has featured in the Art Now Lightbox programme at Tate Britain, the International Short Film Festival Oberhausen, Spacex, Exeter, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London, The Showroom, London, Witte de With, Rotterdam and the London Film Festival .