In 2019, the British Council announced an open-call to find partners among universities in the UK, as well as organizations involved in craftsmanship in Azerbaijan - and has since enlisted the support of six Azerbaijani and two UK-based arts organisations.
Together with Plymouth College of Art, we developed two strands for the Crafting Futures programme. The first strand is the development of a ‘universal design module’ for crafts and creative practice within formal education settings. This module will be put forward for approval at policy level by all colleges in each country. This will be followed by developmental work exploring digital development of specific aspects of the crafts sector followed by activities that explore enhancing entrepreneurship delivery.
The second is a three year research project to examine culturally specific pedagogic practices across both informal and formal sectors in Azerbaijan with a particular interest in trans-generational home and community-based learning.
Real to Reel film screenings
Together with the Architecture, Design, Fashion team, the Crafts Council, the Ministry of Culture and State Tourism Agency, The Real to Reel touring programme highlights shorts that have screened at Real to Reel: The Craft Film Festival, the first UK festival dedicated to craft and the moving image. This diverse selection of films all concern themselves with craft and design, whether thematically, technically or materially.
They explore our relationship with materials and making and include documentaries, maker profiles, and hand-crafted animations, celebrating craft in its many facets.
The programme is aligned with Sustainable Development Goals:
- SDG4: Education and training to develop skills, entrepreneurship and improve the creative quality of crafts. Research and toolkits share knowledge and expertise internationally.
- SDG5: Women artisans and communities are economically empowered and valued;
- SDG8: Youth engagement builds creativity and innovation for decent work for all and inclusive growth;
- SDG10: Reducing inequalities by uniting old and new, handmade and digital, rural and urban, cultural and economic – encouraging parity for all.
- SDG12: promotes sustainable and ethical production and consumption for environmental sustainability and circular design;
- SDG17: All projects are delivered through international partnerships and collaborative exchanges