If you were asked to create a collage of Brixton, what images would you use? Perhaps a picture of a tightly packed, diverse group of people; crowding around the tube entrance and battling to board buses – or indeed battling with life, each other and the authorities. Maybe your impression of Brixton conjures up scenes from the outdoor market on a Friday morning, and the indoor market on a Friday night – a nirvana of shopping and varied, exciting nightlife. Or maybe you only see the contrasts: the soup kitchen and champagne bar, the old estates and the new builds, the gentrification and the firmly rooted independence.
Would your collage differ depending on where you live?
Do lifelong dwellers see a different Brixton than the new residents?
And what would a visitor from afar, passing through for the day, make of it all?
However you see Brixton, one thing is for sure, no-one has the complete picture. Some may not know that this enclave of south London is home to a chocolate museum; a second and more difficult to find cinema, and the Black Cultural Archives. And even more surprisingly, a windmill.
These musings, and constant questioning of what of we see, has led us to our theme for 2015: Kaleidoscopes.
Brixton is the archetypal melting pot. Part fractured heritage, part reconstructed mosaic. As with a kaleidoscope, the local picture constantly changes depending on how you view it. Yet this is not unique to Brixton. The same can be said of all of London, and indeed, of many other places all over the world.
Kaleidoscope comes from Greek words meaning: ‘observation of a beautiful form’. Typically one is made of a triangle of mirrors – a nice echo for our third TEDxBrixton – and as a viewer looks into one end, light entering the other creates a moving pattern. The multi-coloured gems tumble about, bouncing and reflecting off each other and their surroundings, creating an infinite wonderment of images. Yet, to us, Kaleidoscopes means more than that: it’s a springboard for ideas, a challenge to perceptions, and an opportunity to venture beyond what we know.
We hope to make our third TEDxBrixton the most memorable to-date. We have an exciting new venue to be in, some new faces in the team and a programme that is already looking rich in wholehearted talks, immersive experiences and unexpected connection. We can’t wait to share it with you.
TEDxBrixton 2015 will take place in October. We’re keen to have as much local involvement as possible.
So, if you are an aspiring speaker with a story to share, please do get in touch: email@example.com.
Or if you would like to volunteer for, support or sponsor TEDxBrixton 2015, then drop us a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.