Mansions of the Future was a three-year Arts Council England funded project to create an arts and cultural hub in Lincoln.
The hub was brought to life through a public programme of talks, workshops, communal lunches and family activities, alongside national and international artistic commissions.
Creative Rebel CIC was proud to be selected as Cultural Associates to the project delivering a range of events and opportunities to enhance and develop the community within the space.
Creating Space & Support:
Over the course of the three years that Mansions of the Future ran, we were able to deliver activities that supported the use of the space both at an operational level and by developing
takeover activities that facilitated co-design, co-creation through experimentation to build stronger creative and cultural commons by sharing ideas and skills.
We held regular takeovers including film screenings, TEDx events, networking events, collaborative working events and workshops that explored the concepts of community action and sustainability led social change for the future of Lincoln.
During the course of the 3 years that Mansions of the Future ran, we worked directly with 300+ people through workshops, activities and outreach.
Through our operational support for the hub, we were able to engage with a further 500+ people.
Unfortunately, due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the Mansions of the Future project was cut short in 2020 with the legacy of the project taking place virtually.
OUR KEY LEARNING:
Give before you get.
Mansions of the Future set up a gift economy offering free space to play and experiment that allowed the project to grow a community with an attitude of abundance in which the community could use common resources. Mansions of the Future taught us the power of saying "yes" without the expectation of a reciprocal result, which is something that's key to our own practice.
Empower people to follow their passions.
Much of the success of Mansions of the Future was down to its ability to empower people who didn't have the resources they needed to be able to follow their passion. Not only did Mansions of the Future create an incredible artistic programme it allowed people to dream aspirationally of what a better, more artistic environment could look like.
Be intentionally participatory.
As a company, we often talk about how community projects are done to communities rather than with them. Whilst Mansions of the Future did have some obligations to their funders they managed to create a programme of events and opportunities that were intentionally participatory allowing people to lead the process, which fostered a greater sense of ownership.
Being social helps deepen connections.
There is a universal common bond between everyone on the planet: food. By offering Community Lunches and discussions over pizza both ourselves and Mansions of the Future were able to deepen and solidify those connections and establish greater common ground.