‘A Local Dialogue’ is a platform for the work artist Sadia Ur-Rehman does with people and communities.
Conceived in late 2010, A Local Dialogue is an experimental approach to working with words and language for a project that inspires residents of particular local areas to explore their locality. Creating a space for discussion and conversation, A Local Dialogue enables people to explore their relationships to their neighbourhood/local area through the exploration of identity and place.
‘A Local Dialogue’ began life as a series of pop-up tea parties and walks at Valentines Mansion, when Ur-Rehman was the Artist in Residence in 2011. Hosting six tea parties there, each tea party served a different type of tea from a different part of the world, guests were able to experience how tea is drunk in South Asia, North Africa, Persia, China and of course England. An authentic experience was provided with each tea party, Ur-Rehman also set a topic of conversation about the local area and history. During the tea parties, the artist collected and recorded stories, memories, experiences of the local area and Valentines Mansion.
Ur-Rehman continues to use her tea parties as a vehicle for engagement; these have travelled and popped up in numerous locations across London, including Kew Gardens, the National Maritime Museum, an empty shop in Tottenham and more! To find out more visit Sadia’s Tea Party.
‘A Local Dialogue’ has evolved and now brings together all of the multidisciplinary work the artist delivers with people and communities. Ur-Rehman is passionate about artist-led community engagement and working with diverse communities to enable the co-creation of art. She is continually building on her practice as an artist developing and testing innovative ways to engage people, finding new ways to bring communities and people together. Ur-Rehman is particularly interested in people’s relationship to their neighbourhoods/local areas and her commitment to enabling them to express and explore issues of identity, place and aspiration through the visual arts; A Local Dialogue is a culmination of this.