Thursday, 18 July 2013

Slow Boat sets sail around the Midlands – and looks for people named Navin

·       Artist Navin Rawanchaikul brings his global search for people called Navin to the Midlands
·       Major art project taking Ikon’s Slow Boat along the inland waterways

This summer, Ikon is calling for people called Navin to join Navinland, a global community of people sharing the same name.
Led by Navin Rawanchaikul, an internationally acclaimed Thai artist of Indian descent, Navinland will be hosted aboard Slow Boat, Ikon’s converted canal boat which travels the inland waterways as a unique venue for exhibitions and events. The project is undertaken by Ikon Youth Programme (IYP), a group of Birmingham-based young people who produce, present and promote their own artwork as well as that of others.
IYP and Slow Boat take the search for Navins through the Midlands, launching from Warwick Bar in Digbeth, Birmingham, on 27 July and taking a 130 mile round trip to Nottingham, Leicester, Loughborough and Coventry. Events along the journey include a shared supper at the New Art Exchange, Nottingham, an artist’s talk at Loughborough University and a day of family activities canalside in Coventry.
Navin Rawanchaikul is famous for his dynamic art projects and an innovative style which integrates community experiences into eccentric narratives. In 1995, he initiated his landmark project Navin Gallery Bangkok, in which an ordinary Bangkok taxicab was transformed into a mobile art gallery. Its great success prompted several versions of the Taxi Gallery in cities around the world, including Birmingham for an Ikon exhibition in 2000.
Navin Rawanchaikul said, “I am happy to bring Navinland to the UK and in particular to the Midlands. Sailing aboard Ikon’s Slow Boat, we will be a floating platform, uniting people called Navin and finding exciting new collaborations along the way.”
Slow Boat is organised in collaboration with the Canal & River Trust and sampad, Birmingham’s development agency for South Asian arts.
Slow Boat is supported by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation and the Canal & River TrustSandwell Council. Navinland is supported by Jim Thompson The Thai Silk Company.
Join Navinland by registering at
Navinland and Slow Boat Events
Slow Boat Summer Launch
Saturday 27 July, 2–4pm – FREE
Warwick Bar, Minerva Works, Fazeley Street, Birmingham B5 5RS
Join us to celebrate the launch of Slow Boat Summer 2013 as part of the Warwick Bar Summer Fete, a moveable feast of art, culture and food, 12–6pm.

Slow Boat in Nottingham
Saturday 3 August, 7–9pm – £5 per person
New Art Exchange, 39–41 Gregory Boulevard, Nottingham NG7 6BE
Join IYP, Navin Rawanchaikul and New Art Exchange

for a shared supper to celebrate Slow Boat in
Nottingham. Places are limited and must be booked. Please visit or call

Ikon Shop on 0121 248 0711.

Slow Boat in Loughborough
Tuesday 6 August, 5–7pm – FREE
Loughborough University Arts, Edward Barnsley Building, Loughborough University, Leicestershire LE11 3TU
Who is Navin? Where is Navinland? Join Navin Rawanchaikul for an artist’s talk, presented in collaboration with Loughborough University Arts. Places are free but should be reserved by calling Ikon on 0121 248 0708.
Slow Boat in Coventry
Saturday 10 August, 2–4pm – FREE
Taylor John’s House, Coal Vaults, Canal Basin, Coventry CV1 4LY
Set in the historic Coventry canal basin, Slow Boat hosts an afternoon of creative activities for families inspired by Navinland. Open to all ages. No need to book, just drop in.
Slow Boat hosts Clayground Collective as part of 4 Squares Weekender
Saturday 7 & Sunday 8 September, 12–5pm – FREE
Outside Ikon Gallery, Oozells Square, Brindleyplace, Birmingham B1 2HS
Celebrating the return of Slow Boat to Birmingham
we host a family workshop to create a giant city and
canalscape with the Clayground Collective team,
stopping off en-route from London to the

British Ceramics Biennial in Stoke-on-Trent.
Open to all ages. No need to book, just drop in. This event is part of the 4 Squares Weekender, a weekend of outdoor arts in celebration of the new Library of Birmingham.

Slow Boat at the Tipton Canal & Community Festival
Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 September
12–4pm – FREE
Neptune Health Park and Coronation Gardens off Owen Street, Sedgley Road West, Tipton DY4 8PX
Slow Boat and IYP join local residents to celebrate the annual Tipton Canal & Community Festival.


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