RCA Student Visual Minutes

Within the ‘new normal’ – which for many of us has changed the ways we work, communicate and collaborate with each other, and how we must reimagine the future – the Wandsworth Arts Team has been re-thinking how we can speak with our residents, partners and stakeholders in clear and comfortable ways.

As we develop a new ten-year Arts and Culture Strategy for Wandsworth, we wanted to explore a series of topics with a wide range of stakeholders to gain insight into how the sector is addressing and responding to ongoing questions of access, inclusivity, diversity, young people, and the future of arts and culture in Wandsworth.   

Above, Visual Minutes by Eva Oosterlaken

During July and August 2020 we delivered nine strategy sessions on a range of themes, which were attended by over 100 participants representing senior leaders, artists, community partners, and local residents. Sessions were hosted on Zoom by two independent Arts and Cultural experts, Samina Zahir and Elizabeth Lynch, who facilitated open conversations where the only item on our agenda was to listen.

To help create a dynamic digital space (which included the use of JamBoards and Zoom breakout rooms) we also teamed up with the Royal College of Art (RCA) and invited four RCA students to create Live Visual Minutes that would capture these conversations and visually reflect the content of each session.

Above & Below: Visual Minutes by Siddhi Gupta

The artists, Jiazhen Cai, Siddhi Gupta, Eva Oosterlaken, and Pooya Sareh did an incredible job. Being able to look at the visual minutes live during the conversations was a great way for the groups to reflect on what was being discussed, and noticing which points the artists were specifically picking up on enabled us to re-respond to certain issues. Every single participant has requested access to the visual minutes and has been hugely complimentary to the artists and their final presentations.” – Charlie Levine, Wandsworth Arts and Culture Strategy lead, Wandsworth Arts Service

Victoria Patrick, Community Engagement Manager from RCA commented, “It was a great experience working with Wandsworth Council. As part of shaping future arts and culture policy for Wandsworth, we offered opportunities for RCA students to use their creative skills and connect with organisations, artists and residents across the borough.

As part of the RCA’s community engagement work in the borough of Wandsworth, the college works closely with local groups, residents, schools and businesses to develop collaborative projects that enable local communities to engage in creative arts and design practice, and connect with RCA staff, students and graduates. The RCA produces a regular bespoke local community newsletter for residents in Wandsworth – sign up to receive this here.

Above: Visual Minutes by Jiazhen Cai

The conversations and visual minutes are feeding directly in to the Wandsworth Arts and Culture Strategy and its final look and feel will be inspired by the wonderful RCA students’ work.

Above: Visual Minutes by Pooya Sareh