Statements in Semaphore

by susanmerrick in Aldershot, England, United Kingdom

We did it
On 18th January 2017 we successfully raised £585 with 25 supporters in 21 days

To bring female artists and women from my community together, creating inclusive art discussion and art practice that challenges convention.

by susanmerrick in Aldershot, England, United Kingdom

 Statements in Semaphore

FiLiA Artist in Residence 2017

I have just had amazing news, that the Arts Council England have approved funding for me to be Artist in Residence with FiLiA,  a charitable organisation focused on promoting positive change for women through united action and solidarity whilst also celebrating difference and diversity. But this funding is subject to raising £2300 of other funds myself , and that is why I am here! If you back this project you are supporting community Art, Local women, local support organisations and myself as an Artist.

Please have a read below about what I am doing and why I need your help, and take a look at the rewards I have on offer for those who are able to back the project. I also have a project FB page here.


Statements in Semaphore is a project I am running through 2017 as my role 'Artist in Residence' with FiLiA. The project will take two parts, firstly producing a series of art workshops for women in my local area, and secondly developing a series of my own art work that will be a commentary to and made in response to the year long project. The work produced by the women participants and myself will then be exhibited in London and locally at the end of 2017.


I am passionate about my Art practice being something that engages people and makes conversations happen, but not just Artists. I want to engage with people who do not normally take part in the Art world.  This project is about just that and it is why I wanted to work with the charity FiLiA over 2017, so instead of being on my own working, I will be engaging with other groups of women and my work will come from that.  I will begin by providing workshops for three groups of women in both my local community and in London who receive support from three seperate organisations. These workshops will offer the opportunity for the women to create their own art work alongside and with the support of the professional artists.

The organisations that I will be working with are:

Working Chance, London

Domestic Violence Hampshire, The YOU Trust, Aldershot

Taking Steps, Basingstoke

The amazing Artists that will be working with me on these workshops will be:

Leah Thorn:

Janet Pavone:

Cate Field:

Through this project I will also be creating my own work. Initially I will continue to develop my photographic work - Statements in Semaphore. Through this work I meet women and photograph them performing a semaphore letter. The series forms several alphabets which have been used so far to create socially relevent messages from within the communities that they are created, and then exhibited.  In meeting and photographing the women I also get to speak to these women about themselves, hear their experiences and talk to them about what I am doing. 

I hope that this project will start conversations between people in my local communities, it will provide a direct link between the community and the Art using particpants from the local area AND it will ensure that they are able to come and see the work themselves when it is shown. Because it is not just about creating this work, it is about access, for women into Art, and for the Art world into the lives of women and women's experiences. 

Through both the workshops and my art practice I will be meeting with and working with local participants as well as artists. Through this I hope to acknowledge and break down a little the frequent barriers between local communities and the Art events that go on within them. I also want to start this residency as I intend to go on, by bringing together women from the local communities that I live and work in, together with Art. Specifically women who usually have difficulty accessing such events or art.

I will also be developing a project website that will play a large part in ensuring that this residency can grow an audience and continue into future projects, supporting more women and artists.

'Art has a unique ability to communicate the diversity of women’s experiences, and to engage the public with feminism in an accessible way.' FiLiA 2016


I already have the support of Arts Council England, which is phenomenal. They will be funding the majority of the project but I also need to raise £2300 here. 

I have already started developing my own work for the project. I have taken photographs of 25 women and artists including two of the Guerilla girls while they were in London and this work has been exhibited successfully twice through December 2016. 

The Artists and organisations I wish to work with are already confirmed. I have already confirmed venues that we can use and exhibition links for the end of 2017. We now simply need the funds.


The funding provided by the Arts Council and yourselves will go towards:

Paying Artists and running the workshops (without any charge to the organisations or participants).

Materials for Workshops and exhibitions.

Creating and running a project website to reach a wider audience of women and organisations.

Development of Art work and creating/preparing the final pieces for exhibition (Artists work and participants work).

Storage of particpants Art works.

Exhibiting the works, including promotion and ensuring particpants can attend the exhibtions (inc travel costs).


If you are keen to support this project then donations of any amount would be amazing.  However I also have a few unique rewards available too. These include various sizes of screen prints of the original semaphore photos, a chance to be a part of one of the alphabets and a chance to suggest a message that the project will produce or project in one of its exhibitions.

The screen prints will vary in size depending on the pledge but they are also all unique. They will vary in colours but you can choose the letter that you wish to have.

Please see below to choose your letter/photo or visit the FB page if you wish to see the names of those with their letter. Please remember that the screen print will originate from the photo but the finished look is quite different.

Each piece is a unique piece of work individually made by me. See the image of Mandy - Letter H below as an example.

 Project photos taken from Artist's own work including images of the following Artists and Women in no particular order:

The Guerrilla Girls- Frida and Kathe, Amy Dignam, Dyana Gravina, Dagmara Bilon, Anna Enhold, Roisin Rae and Sophia Marinkov Jones, Mandy, Laura, Jane, Diane Goldie, Mel, Zac, Anne Newton, Carole, Kim, Sam, Gemma Nelson, Kelly, Caitlin, Petranella, Stefi, Laxmi Thapa, and the Letter X as itself.


This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£5 or more

£5 Reward

I will record a live thank you to you on Facebook!

£10 or more

6 of 100 claimed

£10 Reward

An A5 unique screen print of one of the original semaphore photos (a letter of your choice) plus entry into a draw to suggest a message for the project to produce. Please see the project information for an example of the screen prints. The process of screen printing means that each one is individual and I will be making each one by hand. Colours will vary. All backers will be listed and thanked on the FB page and website.

£10 or more

£10 Reward

I will send you a tea bag (for a good old cuppa) and a hand written thank you note.

£20 or more

3 of 100 claimed

£20 Reward

An A4 unique screen print of one of the original semaphore photos (letter of your choice - see images in the story section) plus an entry into a draw to suggest a message for the project to produce. Please see the project information for an example of the screen prints. The process of screen printing means that each one is individual and I will be making each one by hand. Colours will vary. All backers will be listed and thanked on the FB page and website.

£20 or more

0 of 100 claimed

£20 Reward

Come and join me for an informal talk about the project, what I hope to achieve from it and how I got to this point. We can talk art, funding and anything you like! I will also throw in a free drink!The venue is tbc but it will be in the Aldershot area.

£20 or more

0 of 50 claimed

£20 Reward

Join me to create a public message flash mob style in Kings Cross on Saturday 4th Feb - address and time to be confirmed.

£40 or more

1 of 50 claimed

£40 Reward

A unique A3 screen print of one of the original semaphore photos from project (letter of your choice - please see photos in story section) plus entry into a draw to suggest a message to be produced by the project. Please see the project information for an example of the screen prints. The process of screen printing means that each one is individual and I will be making each one by hand. Colours will vary. All backers will also be listed and thanked on the project FB page and website.

£40 or more

£40 Reward

Choose a song and I will record and post my version of it (very likely to have my Yorkshire and Feminist influences)! Post your song choice in the comments of this page.

£50 or more

2 of 26 claimed

£50 Reward

An opportunity to attend a short photo session with me to become one of the semaphore letters. This will create a unique alphabet series of project backers and is open to anyone who wishes to support by pledging £50! All backers will also be thanked and listed on the FB page and website.

£100 or more

1 of 10 claimed

£100 Reward

Backing the project with £100 gives you the amazing opportunity to suggest a message that we will produce the semaphore alphabet - messages will subject to the artists discretion. For each donation of £100 the artist will draw a name from those who donated a smaller amount and offer them the chance to suggest a message too. All backers will be thanked profusely on the project FB page and website too!

£100 or more

0 of 25 claimed

£100 Reward

One of the original semaphore alphabet photos mounted and framed. Send me a message with your choice of photograph.

£200 or more

0 of 10 claimed

£200 Reward

The complete collection of the original semaphore alphabet as a series of small unique prints mounted and framed in one frame. This is something that will only be offered during this crowd funder in this format. The prints will be created and printed by myself and framed by the wonderful Stephen from Love Framing. Size will be approximately 117cm x 30cm

£300 or more

0 of 5 claimed

£300 Reward

A 1 hour fun session of British Sign Language for your organisation.

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