An online conference series bringing together makers, academics and activists…

Friday 8th June, 2021

Organised by: Aoife Monks, Jade French, Lottie Whalen and Suzanna Petot

“The past year has seen a flourishing of craft practices, as people turned to the act of making during the pandemic. This event thinks about the histories of making during states of emergency, inviting historians, craft workers, artists and performers to explore how craft practices have been transformed in moments of crisis. Historians will engage with examples such as the Medieval plague, the Second World War, the Bangladesh Liberation War, the AIDS pandemic, and the Battle of Lewisham, while artists and craft workers will share what they have made in the past year and offer ‘how to’ sessions in particular making practices…”

Meet the speakers:



12pm introductions and opening thoughts

How To

12.10-20 How to make a collage – with the Decorating Dissidence collective. Materials needed: Paper, magazines/newspapers, glue or tape, scissors

Show and Tell – historians in conversation with Aoife Monks

12.20-12.35pm Dr Daniel Fountain (artist, researcher, lecturer) on AIDS Quilts

12.35-12.50pm Dr Isabel Davis (Birkbeck, University of London) on making during the Medieval plague

Pandemic Diaries – in conversation with the Decorating Dissidence collective

12.50 pm – conversation with artist Sarah-Joy Ford who will share things she made in the past year

1.05pm break

How To

1.15pm: how to turn everyday objects into art, with artist Madi Acharya-Baskerville

Materials needed: Small twigs and feathers collected on a walk, acrylic paint, wire used for craft or string, pliers (for cutting wire), string, scissors, PVA glue, beads, buttons, shells, any other items with holes in…

Show and Tell

1.25pm Professor Esther Leslie (Birkbeck, University of London) on dyeing, DADA, and World War II.

1.40pm Paul Nataraj (musician and associate researcher, Loughborough University) on making music during the Bangladesh Liberation War

Pandemic Diaries

2pm Live artist Lucy McCormick and costume designer and sculptor Morven Mulgrew in conversation on costumes they made during lockdown.

How to

2.15 How to upcycle with artist Ophelia Dos Santos

Show and Tell

2.30 Rose Sinclair on Dorcas Societies and the Battle of Lewisham

2.45 Everyone shows what they have made during the course of the afternoon.