Thursday 21 May 2015

Thursday 21st May: Lakwena Studio Visit

In-between finishing the FRAME commission and flying off to South Africa with The British Council, I managed to catch up with Lakwena quickly at her studio.  Here are the paddles that she made for Abimaro's SoundMachine workshop at The Southbank Centre where the conductor used the props to direct the choir of this human-voice experience.  You can see the work-in-progress for the invite artwork amongst other ref images & fabric samples.    
Keep tabs on Lakwena's international wall projects over on her Instagram here.

Thursday 21st May: NIKE X FRAME X LAKWENA

Since Lakwena took part in a talk for The WProject series in conjunction with NIKE Women she has gone on to do a giant wall for "Power Of The Girl" and now an entire artwork re-work for FRAME.  Lakwena not only painted the front of house exterior but also the curve ceiling of the arches!  I can't imagine how she converted her patterns to a convex brickwork canvas, and working during nocturnal night-shifts!  Massive respect to this legend who consistently undertakes monumental commissions with her steady calm demeanour.  Visit the dance & fitness studio to check it out or head over to Lakwena's Instagram and Website to see more............

Tuesday 19 May 2015

Tuesday 19th May: BikeDemCrew to Henry's Burgers

My next challenge post-marathon is to undertake a 100k bike ride for the Rapha 100 in July.  The weekend following the 26 mile race, I rode a 60 mile route of "bare" hills to Brighton.  Not to be recommended per se, but a positive test of endurance and friend's patience to push you on and save you from admitting defeat.  Potentially the sweetest triumphant portion of fish and chips Ive had the pleasure to unwrap on that promenade.

After the 120 mile jaunt out to Suffolk last year on the Dunwich Dynamo Im hoping the Rapha 100k will be doable?!  In preparation, BikeDemCrew are back in full effect by going for  training long trips out on scenic escapes.  Ive traded in long run Sundays with long ride Sundays.  The latest coastal escapade took us to Leigh-On-Sea in Essex for an English Riveria dip and dinner at Henry's Burgers.  It seems you have to leave the culinary melting pot of the capital to find a decent burger joint .  Henry's is like no other diner I've been to before.  They make their own fresh mince daily from grass fed, free range, sustainable farms straight from Lancashire.  These patties come in a menu of new variations and twists with a ridiculously spot-on selection of side-orders including deep fried gherkins with blue cheese dip!  Condiments are also a serious concern with their own formulations of chilli sauces kept safe from children's reach, dispensed in medicine bottles.  The comprehensive cocktail list includes an Aperol Orange Spritz added for the incoming Summer evenings and Bloody Marys for the morning after.  We opted for the malt milkshakes to takeaway for our paddle in the sea pool and train back to the smoke after our Smoke House BBQ buns.  Thank you Henry's, we will return ................. making a U Turn, or as I have now renamed the manoeuvre - the "Usher".    

(All photos by me, except two by Peigh , group shot selfie by Jason, and the burger snap by Henry's as a taster because you have to head over to their Instagram to appreciate it all fully!  Not to mention the open ceiling out to the blue sky of the modern build)       

Southend on Sea
01702 436661

Leigh on Sea
01702 715390

Monday 18 May 2015

Monday 18th May: Rumble In The Jumble 2015 #RITJ4

"The Music Circle" Charity for which I ran the marathon to raise funds for projects in Eastern DRC has an annual jumble sale "Rumble In The Jumble" (aptly named after the infamous DRC boxing fight).  For its 4th return they raised £25,751 for their new Myanmar cause and for Oxfam's emergency Nepal relief fund.  Here are photos from the day with Gemma Cairney hosting on the loud-hailer and AJ who I shared a stall with where we spent the duration dancing before my turn on the decks. Gemma and I also had a day running around town, gathering up kind donations from the likes of Francesca Burns at Vogue, Tatty Devine, Trace Publicity, Lazy Oaf and more........... many thanks!  

Today is the last chance to get a £5 raffle ticket for the "Music Festival Raffle" to win tickets to a massive list of events from Lovebox, Field Day, Bestival, Standon Calling, Latitude, Secret Garden Party ....... see full list & purchase here: 

(Photos from Gemma's Instagram, AJ's Instagram , Natasha Scarlet & my own)

Monday 18th May: Red Bull Tropical Edition

Now there is a suggestion of sun and whiff of BBQ in the air, its that time to year to start getting excited for Carnival already!!!! Red Bull asked me in to their HQ to hold a Tropical Headdress making workshop to launch the new Tropical Mango & Guava flavour edition.  Not only is Carnival my favourite day of the year but Mango is my favourite fruit so this was a dream day.  I brought along enough artificial fruit for the whole room to take away their own Carmen Miranda creation.

Monday 18th May: Walter & Zoniel Wedding Day

I had the honour of being asked to conjure up the cosmic headdresses for Walter & Zoniel's May Day Queen bridesmaids.  Zoniel gave me free-reign but wanted a surreal theme and specifically eyeballs in flowers!  So I made tiny planets and integrated eyes into these - spooky magic!  Here's Millie Brown snapped by Grace LaDoja on the beach where the ceremonies took place as part of the day's order.  When Zoniel appeared in her dress and veil, she graced the congregation like a goddess appearing from another dimension.  It was constructed by the master knitter Craig Lawrence who crocheted emblems into the body - with an eye at the heart's centre.  Absolutely incredible!!!!  Head over to Grace's Instagram to see more pics of the complete outfit.  
Follow Walter and Zoniel's adventures on their page, including an event at Tate Britain on the day before their wedding and taking part in the Venice Biennial the following days after!!!!
(From top to bottom:  bridesmaids & guest by the beach huts, the astral wedding cake, the bride herself, my Butler's Dozen batch of headdresses delivered in cake boxes)