The Great Northern UK Hive Meetup | The Hepworth Wakefield
On Saturday, I went to the Great Northern UK Hive Meetup in Halifax, West Yorkshire, UK. It was held in @c0ff33a's coffee shed in Hall Street, Halifax, and combined a late Victorian industrial building with a giant, state of the art, modern coffee roaster and, centre back, the computer monitor showing the future: every line on the screen is a block recorded on the Hive blockchain.
I was there early, ostensibly to help @c0ff33a, who I had promised would have nothing to do except provide the space and buy in the catering. I did help to put up the folding table where I sat to write the Saturday Savers Club post. Sadly, I wasn't much more use than that 😁.
From left: @stevenwood, @goblinknackers, me, @slobberchops, @livinguktaiwan, @shmoogleosukami's dad, @c0ff33a, @shmoogleosukami and @onw (Mr LivingUKTaiwan took the picture). You can see pictures of @dandays and his wife and @rimicane and shenanigans through the day on @livinguktaiwan's post here and @molometer's post here. You'll also find @c0ff33a's pre-meet write-up here.
We're really lucky in the UK that we have active Hiveans who will support each other for events like these - @c0ff33a did a sterling job, all with a bad back, including ferrying people to the rail station to catch their train home and everyone contributed in some way, and everyone was great company.
It's dead easy to organise your own meetup: pick a venue - a pub or a bar or a cafe - set a date and a time and let everyone know about it. It is good to have a friend to be part of the team, it's not quite so lonely and you'll know you'll have at least one person to have a drink and a chinwag with (Hiveans do talk, there is no doubt about that)!
We also had a coffee roasting demonstration in this small 5kg roaster with the special Hive Blockchain Brazil Nuts coffee blend. We all got a bag to take home, too 😍. You can buy your pack (using fiat or crypto) from White Rose Coffee Roasters.
The next day I visited a building that was the complete opposite: The Hepworth Wakefield, about 18 miles from Hall Street in Halifax. I guess this is a modernist building: it stands on an island, with the river on one side and the canal on the other. The aim of the architect was to make it look interesting from whichever way you approach the building - there is no "front" or "back". This is the bridge over the river from the car park to the gallery. I love the colour, so close to the natural stone of the area.
I was there to see an exhibition by Sheila Hicks, a textile artist using fabric and thread for her art works. This is one of the early rooms in the exhibition, "Off-Grid", featuring monumental pieces in a monumental room - the building is almost cathedral like inside. These three pieces - the giant Turkish Prayer Rug on the far wall, and the two columns of threads looked like architecture to me.
Sheila Hicks studied at Yale with Josef and Anni Albers in the 1950s and you could see their influence in her early work - colour, shape and the small woven experiments, almost like sketchbooks or a diary that Hicks makes to explore and record ideas.
I was more interested in some of her later work, like this piece, made from 3,000 nurses uniforms, torn into strips and dyed. The work was first shown in Hicks' Paris studio. She walked through the streets carrying great bundles of the strips, attracting attention to what she was doing: the local prison governor decided it was an event and arranged for the prisoners to see the exhibition rather than work that day.
The artworks often have a profound effect on people who come to view them, especially if they have been in hospital or have experienced trauma themselves.
This is a small part of a huge wall-hanging composed of the pockets that people use to keep their personal things in while they are undergoing surgery or other treatment. There was another column of belly bands used to cover the bellies of newborn babies and their severed umbilical cords. I found these works very moving, repurposed fabrics, gathered, processed and displayed in sculptural form. The laundered hospital white of the pockets compared to the bougainvillea colours of the nurses uniforms.
The theme of the exhibition was reflected in the building and its surroundings: the view from the cafe window showed the weir and two men fishing on the small beach created by the rushing water.
A service corridor with the toilets and changing room leads to a portrait of the beautiful free access flower garden and nineteenth century mill buildings opposite. The garden was what I had really come to see. I've just started to keep a sketchbook and experiment with watercolours. The garden sounded like a peaceful place to be after the intensity of Saturday's Meetup.
I was amused by the green, purple, yellow colour palette of the garden.
It reminded me of something ...
... or someone 😍 x
Three things newbies should do in their first week and, for most things, forever afterwards!