Henley Festival Inspires Young Artists with ‘The Wall’


Having worked extensively with charity arts projects throughout the Thames Valley since the year 2000, the Henley Festival is extremely proud to announce its latest programme, The Wall. Funded by the Henley Festival, The Wall is a participatory, educational urban art project, giving young and disadvantaged students from the John Madejski Academy, Chiltern Edge School and Aylesbury College and Stoke Mandeville Hospital the chance to develop their artistic skills working with nationally recognised professional artists. On April 25th, the scheme launches with the creation of a giant portable ‘Art Wall’ at the London West Bank Gallery, hosted by urban artists Ordu and False. For more information on The Wall and the Henley Festival, visit www.henley-festival.co.uk.


The Wall is the latest in a line of imaginative art projects devised by the Henley Festival with the aim of bringing together top flight professional artists & groups of young people to create one-off and inspirational pieces of large scale art.


This exciting new project will combine a series of artist led sessions for young people aged between 11 and 15. Each ‘Art Wall’ will be unique to the participating group, culminating in the final pieces being shown at the 2013 Henley Festival from 10th – 14th July. Working with groups of teenagers from Henley, Reading and Aylesbury who would not otherwise have access to creative arts, The Wall also sees the establishment of a brand new relationship between the Henley Festival and Stoke Mandeville Hospital.


Having painted walls and canvases together since 2007 with clients including The Ministry of Sound, Jalouse Night Club, Brooklyn Bites and Schroders Bank; Ordu and False have gone from strength to strength in both their individual styles as well as their collaborative works.


Known for his wild-style lettering and ‘Pure Graffiti’ technique, False has reached new heights in recent years appearing at the high profile ‘Secret Wars’ as well as working with the Ibiza based Arts Hotel where he put his mark on some of it’s rooms. With wall pieces numbering in the hundreds, this prolific artist is literally just around every corner. The other side to the coin is Ordu, an illustrative spray painter who was trained traditionally in the finer side of art and observational drawing, before discovering his love for the combination of spray-paint, huge manga style characters and sexy vintage pin up girls. This is a unique opportunity for the talented pair to inspire the next generation of urban artists and guide them through the creation of work ahead of its display at the Henley Festival.


Stewart Collins, Henley Festival programme Director said: ‘Henley Festival’s projects with youth and special needs groups have always been a crucial and rewarding element of our annual activities, and the new association with Stoke Mandeville takes us a giant leap further. It’s proving to be a genuine thrill working with such an important national institution.’


Urban Artist Jem Tercan aka (Ordu) said: “It is a very exciting time for us “urban” artists. It seems there is a general interest in what used to be seen as counter-cultural art. We are so pleased to see that our style of art has not only been “accepted” in recent years but is actually highly sought-after.”


At the initial interactive session on April 25th, The Wall project will give students from Reading’s John Madejski Academy the chance to experience urban art up close and create their own unique and transportable piece of work. They will be introduced to the techniques of spray painting, with a hands-on experience to get a feel for the process. What’s more, between 11am – 1pm professional artists Ordu and False will also guide them through the gallery where they will learn about the background of urban art. Following the launch session in London, young people from around the Thames Valley area will participate in further artistic activities, creating more ‘Art Walls’ to accompany the exhibition at the Henley Festival in July.