Clear Channel UK has partnered with Pocc, the creative network driving cultural impact, to unlock a new art fund championing the work of underrepresented creatives in 2021.
In its first instalment of the artists-in-residence programme, eight artists will see their work on display across the Clear Channel's network this March as part of a national digital Out of Home campaign.
An open call out back in February via Pocc Studios and the Pocc network saw artists from all walks of life submit their artistic interpretations to this month’s theme: what does gender equality mean to you? Curated by Pocc’s Head of Creative Kevin Morosky and Pocc’s Head of Copy, Natasher Beecher, the final blend of artists celebrates creativity in its various forms, spanning everything from photography and illustration to poetry and design.
With the creative industry facing difficulties in the Corona-19 Pandemic, this celebration of work will bring art to the outdoors, and intends to amplify the profiles of unknown artists across the industry.
Caroline Adeyemi, Strategist and Writer - “Gender Equality is one of those buzz-words that people argue with because they don’t understand what it means. I wanted to move the topic from being ‘liberal’ and ‘forward-thinking’, to showing that it would just mean that we value everyone for who they are, or aren’t, as people, instead of reducing them to stereotypes or inconveniences. I highlighted some of the ‘silly’ and serious ways that gender inequality affects people’s everyday decisions, opinions, values and possibilities in our society so that even a child would understand why it shouldn’t exist.”
Abbey Monteiro, Art Director - “”Run Me My Money!” portrays my frustration and exhaustion from constantly hearing that womxn and especially womxn of colour are being paid less than their white male counterparts. Is it so hard for the industry to pay us the exact same salary for the same job? I am tired of hearing the excuses and the bending of truths to avoid paying us what we deserve. Why do I need to justify ten times harder my worth and value in comparison? Just RUN ME MY MONEY! It’s that simple.”
Mathushaa Sagthidas - Photographer - “வீடு & பாரம்பரியம் (means home & heritage)” really revolves around bringing representation to south Asians, but especially women through focusing on traditions centred around woman whilst bringing authentic and genuine representation to south Asian woman of various skins tones and backgrounds, to contribute towards breaking beauty standards that have been set by Eurocentric expectations (from skin lightening to not having body hair) but also this false narrative/ belief that all south Asians are the 'same' - especially when's there's so much rich and different culture, history and heritage within the community.”
Jael Umerah-Makelemi, Illustrator - “My piece is called ‘Reside in Confidence’. It is inspired by Frida Kahlo, a women who was bold, confident within herself and was her own favourite muse. I was listening to a finance talk recently and the speaker was talking about the different gaps women experience; the gender pay gap, motherhood gap, the pension gap etc. One thing she said that stuck with me is; As women we sometimes lack that confidence within ourselves. We sometimes second guess ourselves and that can hinder our growth. I want this piece to inspire women like me who sometimes second guess themselves, to get out of their own way and walk in their confidence. Gender equality will take a lot of hard work and a cultural shift. I believe that once women begin to rise, the nation will rise too.
Denisha Anderson, Photographer and Videographer - “UK Black Pride is Europe’s largest celebration for African, Asian, Middle Eastern, Latin American and Caribbean-heritage LGBTQ+ people. In its 14th year I wanted to join in on the celebration and capture the true definition of diversity. The series conveys the safety and inclusion felt by all those who attend, the joy felt when self expression can take place without fear or judgement.”
Kaysha T Omole, Artist - “My image “One in Two” speaks to the nature of man, being both creator and nurturer. Looking at the duality within us, and how it can give way for balance, as it's through that energy and connection we are created. Like bees bounding between pollinated flowers, our existence by design is to breed life, be life. I was inspired by my current body of work, where I look at identity and culture, the intersections that live in those spaces and how environment has an affect on these understandings. My looking is through the lens of storytelling by way of self portraiture.”
Clear Channel, who previously partnered with Pocc and Facebook to amplify the Making Britain Great Since campaign and generating over 11 million impressions in the process are excited by this year’s Art Fund:
Lucy McKillop, Head of Brand Marketing, Clear Channel UK, said: "Being a platform for good is a core part of who we are and what we do at Clear Channel, so creating the POCC x Clear Channel Art Fund was a no brainer. We’re beyond excited about launching this project together. We get to extend our partnership with POCC, and create artistic residencies for visual artists from under represented backgrounds nationally – which is incredibly important. But also, as more and more people get back to enjoying the great outdoors it’s a joy to bring art to the streets of the UK for everyone to enjoy."
Pocc was cofounded by Kevin Morosky and Nana Bempah to drive
cultural change for the creative industry. Now home to 850+ creative
professionals spanning the U.K., Amsterdam and the U.S. Pocc Studios is the
creative arm of the Pocc network designed to leverage the creative power of the
community to deliver community-led independent projects as well as branded
Natasher Beecher, Head of Copy, Pocc, said: “Displaying such powerful, emotive and impactful creative in a way that makes people think a little differently - or even simply lighten their day - is what many in our industry strive for. To be able to show such work from our community shouldn’t be a rarity, so we hope to change that through this artist-in-residence series.”
The artists’ work can be seen on Pocc’s social media channels and outdoor media from
Monday 22nd March.