British artist Michael Pinsky, Curator Stephanie Delcroix and Mauritian artist Gaël Froget led a Creative Hustle in Mauritius on 2 August 2017, with 22 young Mauritian artists. The room was buzzing with creativity and passion from talented individuals in various fields including, visual arts, performance arts, digital arts and writing.
Our three speakers, along with the participants, explored creativity and cooperation, factors which have helped artists to succeed and reach more audiences. They also discussed issues which young artists need to overcome, including confidence issues, the fear of failure and specific roadblocks to young Mauritian artists.
Gaël shared how his artistic journey began and explained how, whilst he requires alone time in his studio to create his work, it is important to put one’s work out there and share it with other people. He highlighted the importance of hard work, told us that what people see is most probably only 20% of his work and confided that he never knows how good his work is until he receives feedback.
Michael and Stephanie discussed how their work hinges on collaborations with engineers and town planners, amongst many others, so that their work remains outside of galleries and in public spaces.
Following a young artist’s revelation that he had yet to show his work to anyone, Michael, Stephanie and Gaël strongly encouraged the participants to take the first step of sharing their art and gave guidance as to how they could approach this.
The event was live streamed on Facebook to give the opportunity to other artists to hear from Michael, Stephanie and Gaël. The success of the three-hour event can partly be gauged by the fact that, after it had finished, the majority of the participants were still at the venue, deep in conversation, engaging with the speakers and other participants, and – as advised by our speakers - sharing their work!
This was British Council Mauritius’s first Creative Hustle and a great opportunity for us to meet young artists and to begin to forge a network with which we can develop ideas and future collaboration.
Michael and Stephanie were in Mauritius as part of a wider programme of events exploring the link between art and science. This included Michael giving a keynote address on the subject at the State House and the two of them exploring the same theme at a Café Scientifique talk with an audience of Mauritian scientists.