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REDEYE is a sharing programme established for the purpose of Black and other ethnic creative expression through exposure to the cultural economy of non-western film archives, inspiring exploration of the intrinsic value of other cultures. They work with various partners to produce a monthly programme of workshops and talks based on a curated film list, predominantly aimed at young people 18 - 24 year olds, drawing on literature and professional industry experiences for skill development and provide the opportunity for interdisciplinary networking and live events. We spent a morning chatting to Fikayo, Emmanuel and Nigel finding out all about them and REDEYE.

How did you all meet and decide to work together, what inspired you to do it?

Emmanuel and Fikayo have known each other for a long time and have worked on other creative projects together, Nigel and Fikayo met through a part-time job; after quickly establishing an appreciation for each other's interests and modes of working, it was only a matter of time for a collaboration. They said "We watched the Summer of Soul documentary directed by Questlove and recognised through conversations with peers that there wasn't enough visibility around such groundbreaking work." They immediately wished others would feel the same inspiration and began to work to organise an event to celebrate its significance. After the first screening and audience conversation, everyone felt moved and inspired and expressed a wish to have a consistent point of inspiration.

How do you go about picking the films for your screenings? What makes them important to you?

"We watch alot of films to begin with and chose the films that challenged our perception of what film is. Films that took risks with dialogue, cast and had an authentic approach to filmmaking. The conversations we had amongst ourselves after watching some of these films brought out differences in thought. They produced long dynamic discussions - we want the attendees to feel challenged and not always have agreeable conversations because these conversations can have direct and indirect impacts on how they approach their practice and willingness to push boundaries."

Can you tell us about your work with film schools, industry experts and universities?

" Our work is to provide a space where these dots can connect, initiating conversations with the film as the starting point. We challenge industry experts and university lecturers to provide valuable information as a talk or host a workshop based on their process, contextualised by the film. We want the attendees from film schools/institution and media departments to encounter a film that is new to them or made new because of the environment; they process the information and share it in real time. We appreciate connecting with and involving people from different educational backgrounds where everyone shares without hierarchy or gatekeeping."

Why is it important to get young people engaged?

"We each look back at our past where we tried to understand and find our place either at Art school for Emmanuel, Scientific research for Fikayo and distinguishing a creative career via fashion for Nigel. The feeling was the same for each of us - it was a struggle. We progressed without realising or understanding how to maximise resources - fortunately, Nigel eventually found a mentor invaluable in reigning and directing his talents. For the most part, we spent a long time unable to recognise our intrinsic value. We want young people, especially those under-represented, to realise that they hold immeasurable value. To provide a structure which contributes to pointing out the resources available. We want to creatively and actively engage with others in a safe learning space, growing without feeling alienation or developing an imposter syndrome."

How do you see REDEYE developing in the future?

" The coming 10 months have a very clear direction, and we are focussed on doing all we can to ensure that REDEYE is a programme which fulfils its aims. What is beautiful is that much of what we've achieved so far is through conversation and collaboration; we want to continue approaching the rest of the prgramme in this manner. We know the only way to build something structually sound is to focus on its foundations. For REDEYE, this is to represent all of those who encounter it."


Fikayo Oloruntoba comes from a public health background and has worked with artists and creatives on culture-promoting projects. His approach to building cultural interventions aimed at young people is informed by previous community health promotion and research experience.

Nigel Ruwende began his creative pursuits in fashion. Whilst apprenticing craftpeople and tailors, his passions are also exploring culture with a view to elevate stories that might not otherwise be told.

Emmanuel Awuni is a multi-discipline artist. He completed his master's in fine art at the Royal Academy school. His practice is concerned with re-imaging structures that construct our sense of hierarchy, space and time.

Follow REDEYE on Instagram @redeyescreening for all up and coming screenings and workshop details.