From the sixth floor of Tate Modern we can look out across centuries of London’s chrono-crunched megalopolis. Victorian embankments and prehistoric mudbanks; the ‘16th-century’ Globe, a hirsute mess of heritage thatch – it all sits glibly within the same window-framed view as the Shard, kicking against the sky like a spoiled child. Bridge after bridge, boat after boat, the Thames in all its city-spawning glory: Tate Modern is perfectly positioned to follow in the riverside tradition of continuous, ambulatory change.
London presents itself as an agent of change. It is river-flow and crumbling wall; building site reaching to the sky and embedded embankment carved with long-dead initials. Paul Klee is just twenty feet below us, but no angel of history is necessary here: We can see ruin upon ruin of our predecessors stacked in above-ground archaeology and know that each of their lives, their ideas, their hopes-fulfilled and dreams-squashed, came from the same kind of conjuring. It’s a magic empowered entirely by one small realisation: That the way things are is not the way things have always been.
Text by Justin Hopper
Thought Workshop: Beginnings and Endings
Our final Thought Workshop was held on Sunday 2 March 2014 back in the East Room of Tate Modern entitled Beginnings and Endings. This time we were joined by writer and journalist Justin Hopper, illustrator Florence Shaw, and photographer Yemisi Blake who helped us to document our project.
Our Thought Workshop community shared with both them and us their experiences over the past few months, whether they had made any kind of headway into realising their ideas for change, or just how their thoughts and discussions within the Thought Workshops had developed. Capturing everything that came out of the day were the Ladies of the Press who compiled all these contributions whether verbal, written, drawn or photographed to make each of us a custom designed zine that everyone was able to walk home with at the end of the day.
- Download our Thought Workshops zine [PDF, 8.87 Mb]
After a final lunch from our now friends Mazi Maz, the group started to visualise an imagined future, drawing and writing on a huge role of paper a timeline of what had gone before, during the project, and what they hope to achieve as time passes.
And then our goodbyes, the Thought Workshop participants and guests leaving each other as friends and colleagues. Many of the group continue to explore their ideas of change and transformation today, inspiring others to consider their own answer to the question, ‘If you had a year to change something, what would you?’