Design work for book by Illustrator Emily Rand. Image courtesy of Avant-Gardening and Emily Rand.

At the Barham Community Library, Avant-Gardening (Polly Brannan and Paul Green) have explored the rich history of the library, park and the wider local area to craft new stories with schools and local communities.

Through workshops with children and families podcasts exploring the site of the library and park, and the development of a large pop up book by illustrator Emily Rand, communities will explore the role of storytelling in creating a sense of place and connecting to local histories.

Avant-Gardening’s practice is highly collaborative and they work with many different artists, communities and media to realise their shared, co-curated creative vision. The artists that work as part of Avant-Gardening are all experienced arts facilitators and have a strong commitment to working with communities to creatively explore their aspirations for their community.


Avant-Gardening live and work in London.

Avant-Gardening is an artists’ collective set up by artist/curator Polly Brannan and producer/curator, Paul Green, whose work investigates social spaces, communication and the urban environment. Begun in 2008, Avant Gardening has delivered commissions ranging from workshops on housing estates to gallery based exhibitions. The collective has produced interventions, workshops and happenings at the Barbican, Serpentine Gallery, Tate Britain, Watts Gallery and City of London Festival and have been commissioned by the likes of Studio Voltaire, MK Gallery, Phoenix Housing, Wandsworth Arts and Stanley Picker Gallery.


An introduction to the history of the Barham Family who lived in what is now Barham Park. Paul from Avant-Gardening talks to Paul Lorber, one of the people who runs Barham Community Library and a local historian.


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A series of podcasts exploring the local histories of Barham Park in Brent, developed by Avant-Gardening artists’ collective. Their work investigates social spaces, communication and the urban environment.

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