Event date: July 2, 2019 - July 31, 2019 Export event


Soft Fiction Projects

Soft Fiction Projects is an artist run initiative founded in 2018 by artists Alessia Cargnelli and Emily McFarland - based between Belfast and Glasgow. SFP’s research focuses on current and historical narratives of radical cultural, social and economic resistance and examines the potential of these actions to be reconsidered within a contemporary context. 

Guest Projects residency will be a month long period of research, development and hosting of a public programme within the gallery space. 

The project, titled MAKING SPACE, will focus on the history of feminism, housing and urban change in Hackney, London,  in the 1980’s. 

Re-visiting theoretical research and publicly funded social projects developed by the Matrix Feminist Design Co-Operative - authors of the book ‘Making Space: Women and the man-made environment’ - this project will explore the origins of a community of women who moved in squatted houses in the Hackney neighbourhood, in the late 1970’s, and the historical importance of this community in providing an opportunity for women to live autonomously, connected to wider feminist politics in London, and take control over their immediate build environment. 

As part of our joint residency at Guest Projects we will use the gallery space as a forum and set within which to host a series of talks and public debates around the socio-political context of the current social housing crisis, inviting local civil-justice groups and activists to join the conversation. Over the duration of the month we will host a series of public events, screenings and a public forum with a range of guest speakers from local social justice and activist groups, to generate a discussion around wealth distribution and housing provision in the current socio-political landscape . 

The residency will culminate in a small printed publication with a limited edition run of 250 copies and will incorporate the research generated over the month and act as a lasting document of the conversations generated as a result of the project. 

MAKING SPACE : Screening Programme


To conclude MAKING SPACE, a one-month residency at Guest Projects, Soft Fiction Projects will present a screening programme with a selection of video and films expanding upon the research they have been undertaking during their time in Hackney. 

The three short films present parallel histories and stories related to social housing provision and collective community resistance against government policies which entrench an individualistic social and economical system.



Still from Looking On, Dir. Sé Merry Doyle, 2009

Friday 26th of July @7.30 PM 

Guest Project, Sunbury House, 1 Andrews Rd, E8 4QL, London (UK)

The Hackney Food Co-op, 1973, (9 Minutes), television programme with reporter Bernard Falk, BFI Archives.

The Life and Hard Times of Susie p Winklepicker, 1986, (35 Minutes), Dir.  Deborah Hall / Women and The Law Collective, Cinenova Collection. 

Looking On, 2009, (33 Minutes), Dir. Sé Merry Doyle, Loopline Collection & IFI Archives.  

MAKING SPACE project and public programme is kindly supported by The Fenton Arts Trust.


[Image 1, 2] Research Images. Credits: Matrix Design Studio, Making Space: Women and the Man Made Environment, Pluto Press London 1984; pag.43: ‘urban obstacle courses’


[Image 3] Research Image. Source: Wall, Christine, “We don’t have leaders! We’re doing it ourselves”, Field Journal, Vol 7(1), page 137. Image credits: Architects Mary-Lou Ascott and Susan Francis, one of the founder members of Matrix, setting out a floor plate.

MAKING SPACE project and public programme is kindly supported by The Fenton Arts Trust.

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