The Oscar Wilde Temple Artists’ Group

Studio Voltaire collaborated with national LGBTQ+ youth homelessness charity The Albert Kennedy Trust on a wide–reaching participation programme offering six months of workshops, events, mentoring and professional development for young people, in partnership with leading artists, writers and designers.

The Oscar Wilde Temple Artists’ Group was open to anyone aged 16-25 who identified as LGBTQ+. The group drew inspiration from the exhibition, The Oscar Wilde Temple, to explore queer and trans art, history and politics, collaborating with artists to make their own work. The group also took part in archive visits, socials and workshops.

The Autumn programme (October–December 2018) was led by designer Ashish with artist Mark Amura who explored textiles, graphic design and print making. The group visited the LGBTQ History and Alterative Sexuality Collections at Bishopsgate Institute and explored different techniques including badge making, cyanotype printing and marbling, which led to collaboratively designing and fabricating a series of unique fashion pieces. An event and shared meal showcased the final pieces created by the group.

The Winter programme (February–April 2019) was led by writer and filmmaker Juliet Jacques with artist Virgil B/G Taylor to explore different forms of writing and its dissemination, including short stories, fiction and life writing, through performance and zine making. A zine which included poetry, prose and fan-fiction as well drawn contributions, was collaboratively designed with artist Virgil B/G Taylor and is available to purchase to raise funds for The Albert Kennedy Trust. Jacques’ and the group hosted a special evening of public performances and readings, celebrating the culmination of the project.

The project was initiated on the occasion of the exhibition The Oscar Wilde Temple by McDermott and McGough (October 2018 – April 2019) and was supported by Mila Charitable Organisation.

To purchase a printed copy of the zine ‘rarely pure and never simple’ for £4, please email info@studiovoltaire.org.

All funds directly support The Albert Kennedy Trust which works to ensure safe homes and better futures for LGBTQ+ young people. A free digital copy of the zine is available to download below.

Read more about The Oscar Wilde Temple here

Images 1–3: Archive visit to the LGBTQ History and Alternative Sexuality Collections at Bishopsgate Institute, London. Courtesy Bishopsgate Institute, credit Studio Voltaire.

Images 4–6: The Oscar Wilde Temple Artists’ Group sessions with Ashish and Mark Amura. Images courtesy Studio Voltaire and Ashish.

Image 7–13: The Oscar Wilde Temple Artists’ Group Performance Night with Juliet Jacques at The Oscar Wilde Temple by McDermott & McGough, Studio Voltaire London, April 2019, Image courtesy of Studio Voltaire, Credit Tom Carter.