SEE ME AS ME is an exhibition of new work exploring activism and social justice, co-curated by 12 young people interested in social justice and LGBTQIA+ identity in partnership with Attenborough Arts Centre and Pedestrian. The exhibition, displayed for a limited period this December, has been produced as part of the national Where we are… programme, organised by the British Museum and supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.
Running from 2021 until 2025 and supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation, Where we are… aims to help give young people agency within their own local communities by creating three cultural projects a year as part of the British Museum’s National Programmes. It encourages young people to interpret what arts and culture mean to them, their families and local communities thereby supporting and developing their skills and experience.
A fully funded programme, it also intends to help bridge barriers that prevent young people from engaging with arts and culture locally by working collaboratively with local organisations responding to a community need. Working in a four-way partnership with the British Museum, local charities and cultural spaces, Where we are… ultimately aims to connect with young people who are currently under-served by the cultural sector.
SEE ME AS ME features a mix of film, sculpture, creative writing and music – all created and curated by the team of young adults, with support from the creative team of Attenborough Arts Centre and Pedestrian. The exhibition explores issues of identity and the reality of LGBTQIA+ bodies, celebrating both the nuanced experiences and embracing the power of the collective. The team of young curators explain the concept as an invitation to see yourselves as you really are, with no labels, inhibitions or constraints.
Shiven Limbachia, Project Facilitator, said: “An exhibition like this is exactly what Leicester needs and deserves right now. Through a process of exploration, collaboration and dialogue, seeing these participants come together to raise their voices has been so exciting. Navigating one’s identity and place in the world is always a complex struggle; to have these young people share their experiences so openly is a privilege to see.”
Amber Willmott, curator of SEE ME AS ME, added: “Being in a space that is safe and open with other queer people has been really important, not needing to deal with the battle of working in other spaces where your identity may be seen as a barrier.”
Siôn Pope, curator of SEE ME AS ME, said: “It’s great that we’ve been given a space to develop talent that can often be overlooked because of identity, yet frustrating that this specific space needs to be created.”
The exhibition launches on Saturday 4 December at 6pm, and will remain open to the public until Sunday 19 December during Attenborough Arts Centre’s usual gallery opening times. Free to visit.