Sarah Lawton’s Gestures and Mudras

Bank Holiday Monday’s workshop was a new drawing experience in the basement of the happening Rich Mix in Bethnal Green Road.

The whole area was heaving with young couples hanging out in posh caffs or on cobbled street corners. Just wonderful. I swear I was the only oldie pumping on the fair streets of London today but felt revived and comfortable because my workshop was intended for over 55s.

The facilitator welcomed us as we browsed an exhibition featuring saris printed over with drawings of dancers and hand- gestures, lino- cuts and lino-cut prints, dancers’ ankle- bells and other crowd pleasers. I was happy there weren’t any cushions or bean bags on the floor. The drawing and Mudras was for seniors, remember.

We drew each other’s hands in gestures of the Indian inspired dance using a gadget with a prism mirror. The instrument was an aid to getting the gesture through the fluid movement of drawing.

Exhausted by concentration, we moved on to printing with wooden blocks and ink.

There was even juice to liven up ourselves.

I suggested that Sarah get to The Mill in Walthamstow pronto to give the locals a taste of Mudras.

The workshop was indeed a pleasure. Sarah had researched the ways of textiling craftspeople in India before embarking on the gestures project with women at St Hilda’s Project in old Globe Town Tower Hamlets.. Craft is viewed as an avenue for well-being especially amongst the socially un- connected. So some say.

Any more sessions for free? you ask. Yes.
Check Gestures and Mudras at Eventbrite for June beginning. Wear a pinny.

Issue 45. Up Your Street


                                        Autumn Upon Us

Fri 1st Nov free 4-9pm Light Nights (Sat and Sunday too) The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.

                “As the nights start to draw in earlier, come along to explore the north of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in all its illuminated glory. A stunning celebration of light, based on the theme of Diwali, with soundscapes and light installations, as well as walkabout entertainment, food, drinks, and music.”004

Sat 2nd Nov free noon-2pm armchair exercise at Lea Bridge Library Community Room E10. Phone in advance except the library is shut on Fridays. Bring a bottle of water and wear comfy clothes.


                         £5 cheapest. (Book in advance at ). 7pm for 7.30pm

11th year of

A Season Of Bangla Drama

First night. Brady Arts Centre, Hanbury Street, Whitechapel E1. “The Consequence”, a play for adults.


                        free 11am – 1pm   Artist Talk: Jem Finer’s “Spiegelei Junior ”             Meet at Timber Lodge,  no booking required

“Departing from the Timber Lodge at 11am, Martin Newth – artist, lecturer and Programme Director of BA Fine Art at Chelsea College of Art, will be leading a walking and talking tour with Jem Finer   about his work Spiegelei    Junior, installed in the newly reopened Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The interactive talk will be centred on looking; most of Jem Finer’s work is focused on     inviting the viewer to look at landscapes in a new way, through means of several different apparatus’ such as the camera obscura. The talk will shed light on both the history and contemporary uses of the devices, as well as on questions that are raised through examples of Jem Finer’s previous projects, putting the sculptures in the Park into context. A great chance to  see the Park from a different perspective.”

The main entrance to the Park is just off Waterden Road and Westfield Avenue and then it is a 5minute walk to Timber Lodge across the Park. The Following map provides details of the route . The 588 bus runs from Stratford City to the Park entrance.


Wed 6th Nov free  10-noon. Lloyd Park Sharing Heritage. Pigeon dovecotes or animation techniques. There is a planned programme of events. Plus cake and tea! Contact Ellie Mortimer at Lloyd Park to see if there’s room for any more participants.

Thurs 7th Nov free 10-noon Creative writing at Deep Clean Launderette in Beulah Road, E17. Fun and reminiscences.


                             free 6-8.00pm Rich Mix Bethnal Green. E1. Opening Preview


The Brick Lane Gallery is proud to present NATURAL FLUX, a unique exploration of nature as contemporary art, through the medium of bonsai. This exhibition will liberate the often generalised ideas of Bonsai trees as a traditional practice, by placing the trees within an exhibition context, alongside contemporary media of art in one of London’s most well-known contemporary art spaces, The Brick Lane Gallery.

NATURAL FLUX is the continuation of an idea which dates back over 150 years in Japanese bonsai.

                                             free   Rich  Mix  E1.6-8pm  Gina Southgate “PRINTED PAINTED PLAYED “
Gina  paints  huge canvases of musicians at live gigs.
“It’s a collaborative exhibition of my Live Gig paintings  and ephemera  with supporting photographs from Andy Sheppard of lowlightphoto.
contributions  from Paul Bradshaw and Swifty, covers from Treader Label and Ashley Wales’s posters and films.

Fri 8th Nov  £25   A three day writing workshop (no experience required) at The     William Morris Gallery.     Details and application by submitting a 500 word plea at


Up Your Street issue 38


25th Sept
    free  6pm Rich Mix    Errol Linton, harmonica and vocals.

free 12-6pm until 9th Oct. Photos by
Connolly and Pink “Hackney Revisited 1985-2011”.
Chats Palace, Brooksby’s Walk E5

Tues 27th Sept

Spring into Autumn at St John at Hackney!
Adrenalin Dance Classes 

1.15-2.15pm Over 55’s dance
class (free) all welcome
7 – 8.15 pm Adult movement class, all welcome

free    until end Nov . Geffrye Museum, 136
Kingsland Rd E2  Alexandra Blum’s
drawings of the regeneration of Dalston E8.
10-5pm. Sun noon-5. Shut Mondays.

Wed 28th Sept
£5 .6.30-8.30pm  Rivington Place EC2.Emory Douglas, Culture
Sec Black Panthers talks about his life and work  02077491240

                           free 6.30pm Walthamstow Library . Meet east London poets, part of East London Libraries Festival (ignore the line through typing)

                         free 10.30-11.30am Hackney Central
Library . Coffee, cake and book club discussing Steinbeck’s “East Of Eden”.

7.45pm  ‘The blue plaques of
Loughton’. St John’s Church, Leytonstone.E11 (Leyton and Leytonstone History

1.10-1.40pm Organ recital by Losq. St John’s Church Stratford E15

Thurs 29th Sept to 2nd Oct. Stow Music
Festival 2011  E17. Ye Olde Rose and
Crown and other venues.

Fri 30th Sept   free 10-3pm. Newham Leisure Centre Older Person’s Day. Sports, get
fit, and stalls.

free 10-8pm Art displays by local professional artists “Hackney Utopians” highlighting the community project in Abney park last Summer at Stoke Newington Library

1-3pm   Spitalfields tea dance.
Crispin St.

Sat 1st Oct
free   12-4pm Apple Day at
The Mill E17  Bring  pies in apple shapes. Yum

free   until 31/10 Exhibition by Alix Edwards called “Tradewinds” part of Black History Month at Hackney Central Library.

free 1.30 or 4pm guided 2 hour walk of the Lower Lea Valley. Book with Graham of ‘Walk East’  on  07919221806.

                        free 10-5pm Older Person’s Day Kelmscott
Leisure Centre E17

Sun 2nd Oct    £1 noon-5pm  Stow Vintage
Lifestyle Fair at The Ballroom Orford
House Social Club E17

Thurs 6th Oct free     6-9pm (until 26th from 9am -7pm) Black and White Photographer of the Year 2011 at 74 Kingsland Rd E28DL

8th Oct
    free  11-4pm Apple Day , Vestry House Museum garden

Sat  Oct 8th 7pm free

                  From “News From Nowhere Club” which meets at The Epicentre , E11 at 7pm on Saturday 8th October 2011. Refreshments too. All welcome.

Performing arts, the church & the community: an

Speaker: Kathryn Robinson

Kathryn Robinson is a priest in the Church of England. She
lives in Walthamstow & serves at St John’s Church, Leytonstone, as
associate minister. She also serves as part of the Bishop of Barking’s team as
his adviser for the performing arts. This is a pioneering new post established
in 2009 by the Bishop of Barking, the Right Reverend David Hawkins. The Barking
area, set within the Anglican diocese of Chelmsford, covers five east London
boroughs – Barking & Dagenham, Havering, Newham, Redbridge & Waltham
Forest, plus a small part of Essex. The main focus of Kathryn’s work is to
promote, encourage, support & develop good practice in the performing arts
within the churches in the Barking Episcopal Area & to encourage the church
& individuals to engage with their local communities & their local arts
scene. This evening Kathryn will speak about her experiences as performing arts
adviser & how she combines a passion for the arts with her calling to be a
priest in the Church of England.


First Leyton Temple Mills free introductory
day guest pass. Try the gym.

at 22 degrees

Went along to the University of East London,Stratford Campus. What a beautiful building and a load of lovely bustling business-like students. Easy to reach; you can walk it from Romford Rd Morrisons or the 25 bus is nifty and very regular. Just a welcoming place , bright, nestled amongst old old plane trees and blossom. Met some others and we went into an older building which used to be  museum and before that an operating theatre. Imagine!

All pinks and golds. We as a creative group had some voice recording to do.We worked hard and got on with it . There’s a big exhibition coming up soon in Stratford but more through Up Your Street5 as it’s work in progress at present.

Bus 25 to Whitechapel to get to Rich Mix and to see the banner produced for IWDThe banner is hung in the cafe (Mmm) facing outwards.Hard to photograph but you’ll see the sewing machine, scissors, hung up t-shirts and bags, all replicas of what was made in sweatshops. The grey colours represent misery. For we the banner makers it was exercise in button-hole making, button sewing, colour coordination etc etc and we weren’t born with the skills. I’ll go back on a rainy day to get a better photo! Sun eh?

I sauntered around the Lithuanian Film Posters exhibition inside Rich Mix. Lots of movement and energy I felt.

Loved the day!

Banner exhibition


If you are a resident of Walthamstow Village, did you know there’s a tea dance happening for you at The Welcome Centre on Saturday 16th April?
During the week of International Women’s Day subscribers to the free service Up Your Street5  took part in making a banner (sewing and machining) highlighting the plight of women immigrants in the London sweat factories back in the day. The banner is hanging in Rich Mix, Bethnal Green Road.

Congrats Up Your Streeters and thanks to our tutor Anjum

Music programmes on Sky

Nothin’ wrong with telly. Those that slag it off have, what, 5 channels max?

Pancakes made, leaves partially swept, laptop on lap…..

Yesterday I watched the making of “Dylanesque” by Bryan Ferry. The one thing about Bob Dylan is that he could sound out every sound of his poetical lyrics with a spear sharp unique voice.  Bryan mumbles like he’s whispering in his lover’s ear. The band behind Ferry is top class and tight. The camera work was excellent so I was watching the making of a documentary rather than a singer at work.

Sky is rollin’ ’em out…..Ray Davies, Eric Clapton,  Bryan Ferry, and many more….Sarah Vaughan,  Billie , and then some; Georgie Fame’s on Sky’s Vintage tv this week too.

Currently on Sky Arts 1 is the soundtrack to “O Brother, Where Art thou?” So much of the magic is in the editing and the sound technicians’ skills. Highly recommended.


Later is “Gotterdammerung”, Wagner’s masterpiece full of acrobats and gorgeousness. Always something to look forward to.

Very excited about tomorrow on Streetlifefm community radio as Doreen Simon will be interviewed. Ordered a cd by Maxine Daniels to play on the show. See what the postperson brings today!

Off to bid ferociously on Ebay to get that 99p CD “O Brother, Where Art Thou?”

In Westray, Orkney they still use “thee” and “thou” and the German (?) “du”. Love it.

Watched Channel 4’s “The Family” last night. How uplifting was that? A Nigerian family in London let the cameras in and what a warmth there is in that mentally well-ordered house where everyone knows their place amidst strewn possessions and over-crowded rooms. There’s a free showing at “Rich Mix” in Bethnal Green on Monday showing an episode of “The Family” where you get to meet the director and have a natter. You have to book. Do it by phone or pay a £1 on internet !

At Hackney Museum, there’s a free film too and you get to meet the director! Book and enjoy. Check in my events page for “Up Your Street” listings.