How would you describe Society of Explorers?
Silas: We’re a collective of young people, which I think is an important distinction because it’s very much led by us. It’s just a group of people who meet up every week and do creative things. It’s not really limited – it depends what’s on in the gallery and what’s on in the city, and we’ll do something responding to it.
Beth: We work a lot with other artists as well. It introduces you to lots of different ways of doing art rather than traditional pen and paper.
What made you want to get involved?
Beth: I heard about it from one of my art teachers. I like arty stuff, and also they said there’d be free food! I came for the art and stayed for the hummus.
Silas: I was interested in filmmaking. It was less limited to that than I thought it was going to be, but it was really exciting and really interesting, so I stuck around for four years.
George: My mate told me about it. She also said there was free food. It’s turned out really good, it’s given me something to do.
Jack: Peter came to our college and gave us a bit of a talk and it was intriguing. I guess I came along to try something new and get to know other people.
What has being part of the Explorers done for you?
Silas: It’s helped me choose what I want to do with my life. That sounds a bit cheesy, but when I came I thought I wanted to do sciences and by the end I have a really defined idea of what I want to do and where I want to go. And this is another cliche, “youth groups made me more confident”, but it genuinely has because it’s a place where you can express your opinion and there’s interesting things to talk about.
Beth: And everybody’s really nice. Also it gave me lots of opportunities to try out stuff that I wouldn’t usually have been able to – like this session we’re doing video, and I’d never usually do that because I don’t have the stuff to do it with.
Saffron: It’s very relaxing as well. You just come here and do some arty, idea-y stuff.
Can you tell us a little about what you’re working on for The Folk Forest?
Beth: Yes, we have a stage in Endcliffe Park and we’re going to have bands and music acts. We’ve got other things like a shipping container with a load of visual art.
Silas: It’s building on what we did there last year, which was launching our art van. That was the biggest project we’ve ever done, converting an old city council minivan into an art van with a massive portable trailer. We were all really involved in the design – I can see bits of it that I suggested, which is really cool.
Beth: We’re also working with Tough Matter, a visual arts and music pair who work with local artists. We’ve commissioned artists to do posters on a theme, which we’ve decided is space and/or anarchy. They’re also giving all of us disposable cameras which we’ll fill up and then the photos will be displayed.
George: Everyone’s so different as well, so from this disposable camera exercise it’s going to bring out a lot of different results. It’s going to be quite scary, but good.