In 2019, 62 Gladstone Street was re-fashioned from an old Bollywood video shop which belonged to founder and editor Aisha Zia’s father in the 1980’s, to a pop-up public engagement art space, independent gallery and research centre. We exhibited work and created new opportunities for resident artists, hosted talks, exhibitions and workshops that addressed the palpable lack of representation for British Muslims in the UK. This new setting created a ground-breaking platform to discuss contemporary issues affecting the local community, a mix of predominantly Pakistani, Bangladeshi, Indian and new wave immigrants from Eastern Europe, Portugal, as well refugee’s and young people from the Middle East.
We want 62 to be a place where creativity is free, where artists and contributors feel confident, bold and brave with their work. 62 is a place where we can explore, take risks, and push boundaries. We want to give ourselves freely to our work, and collaborate professionally – at the highest level. In order for us to achieve this, trust, openness and freedom of expressions are essential.
62 relaunched on 4th July 202 as a new online social platform showcasing the work of British South Asian artists, activists and writers from Muslim and none-Muslim backgrounds. We want to broaden our remit to be more inclusive of diasporic arts. This project will be a huge opportunity for combatting marginalisation of BME talent from its inception in Peterborough to internationally.
We will build on our overarching aim to promote Peterborough as a cultural city that supports and promotes the development of minority-ethnic artists by continuing our aims and objectives from our touring shows, to the content we publish online, and the workshops we curate to build new audiences. By commissioning and working with British South Asian artists we open up that space for exciting national creative collaboration.