From 2007-2014 Archway was our frame of reference in the maelstrom of the global everyday and where we worked out staying* as a method. The physical, social, economic, political, historical, and mythical of this place provided the raw material for real-time dialogues, exchanges, experiments, and interventions. Artists made over three hundred artworks on the pavements, in the shops, offices, cafes, pubs, places of worship, homes, parks, and alleyways.
The Alight series explored a perceived darkness in Archway; Here in Archway briefed first year fine art students to make 24 hour works; Everything Must Go gathered twenty-six artists to make thank you works for ninety-nine years of Thomas Brothers; A Million Minutes was a two-year programme of public residencies and making in partnership with Islington Council during the early days of austerity. Seven Years in Archway was our final exhibition in a recently vacated William Hill, together with a sited symposium Staying reflecting on what had happened and how to leave.
*Staying – a cumulative public practice of working within the everyday realised in careful conversation with a place and with the people that are local to it. Our three strategies for staying are paying attention to the everyday, working – and therefore making decisions – publicly, and accumulating a critical mass of work in a place to provide momentum for a sustainable staying.
Our Archway staying was hosted by Central Saint Martins at the Byam Shaw School of Art with funding from Higher Education Innovation Fund. Thank you to Islington Council, Archway Town Centre Group, City & Islington College, Mayors Outer London Fund, Transport for London, BODE, Ministry of Justice, Lazari, Cocheme Charitable Trust, Henry Moore Foundation, and Arts Council England for their support. Artists included Jamie George, Becky Shaw, Kelly Large, Matt Lewis, Andrew Dodds, Corinna Till, Alex Baker, Michael McMillan, Edwina Ashton, Marcia Farquhar, Kit Poulson, Mary George, Judy Price, Aaron Williamson, Richard Couzins, Ruth Ewan, Laurence Kavanagh, Janette Parris, Christine Entwisle, Lucy Harrison, Scarabeus, Sarah Cole, Germander Speedwell, Ivan Liotchev, Jane Cheadle, Clare Connors, Janine Harrington, Clare Sams, Eleanor Meredith, Rosie Edwards, Anna Macdonald, Ross Taylor, Madeline Zaharia, Magda Fabianczyk, Frances Scott, Simona Scotto, Hilary Powell, David Batchelor, Jane Watt, Abby Clarke, Sophie Hoyle, Nina Janssen, Rosalie Woods, Diana Smith, Nicola Shilcock, Florence Dent, Tilly Fowler, Anna Hart.