Welcome to Optimism

Faces of standing rock

Back in October, W+K creative Mico had spent 10 days at Standing Sioux Tribe in North Dakota, photographing the unprecedented gathering of more than 200 Native American tribes. They were opposing the built of a controversial oil pipeline through sacred Sioux Lands. What started as a protest of around 200 people snowballed into a gathering of more than two thousand water protectors, peacefully protesting to defend their land and their water. Mico’s ambition was to portrait the beauty, strength and peacefulness of the so called water-protectors, people from many tribes, nations, races and countries.
Today, over 10 months after initial gatherings and many violent confrontations with North Dakotan Sheriff’s department, the natives stand proud and victorious.
In an unexpected move by the Obama administration, the Army Corps of Engineers denied to give easement to the DAPL pipeline, fulfilling an old native prophecy that an eagle would come to defeat the black snake.
You can see more of Mico’s photos and stories from Standing Rock on his Instagram page and read his article on the Huck Magazine about his experience at the camp.

Spore Fund: Art and Architecture in Hackney

181ebfc8-5f4b-456e-9e9f-4582d698fdd3Melting down the silicon to create seating units

The Spore
Fund is £1,000 grant we award to someone in the building to pursue a personal creative project.
Thanks to the initiative, our own Alex Allcott has been able to work with a local Hackney School, the Skinners’ Academy, to offer an Architecture, Art and Design workshop in collaboration with STORE. These workshops are designed to challenge and inspire pupils to consider a creative further education or career.

This project entails that the students work together to create a modular seating unit for the school grounds, made of concrete nodes that slot together.
The pupils made the nodes from silicone moulds cast during the workshop, followed by assembling the seating. We’ll be sharing the final results of the project soon.
Designing the nodes
Preparing the concrete