Stories From Here and There

Stories From Here and There

CREST Men’s Photography Group Exhibition
22nd February – 3rd March

In October 2021, a group of men living in South Tyneside met for a consultation that was carried out between CREST and The Customs House, leading to regular weekly “Chill and Chat” meetings that have created a place for community, using art for improving wellbeing, mental health and learning.

This is the culmination of the first of a series of projects to redefine narratives about identity, migration, kindness, and what it means to feel like one is mentally and emotionally both “here and there”.

The photography course, led by Damien Wootten, explored different aspects of photography – with an emphasis on learning new skills, creativity, confidence building and enjoyment. It looked at different ways of interpreting and recording the local environment – from the riverside to the seafront, using mobile phones and traditional cameras. Exploring studio and location portraiture, the sessions gave participants the opportunity to use professional equipment, to take portraits of each other and work collaboratively, building new connections and personal confidence. In conducting these sessions, Damien also carried out a portrait series of the participants, which is shown alongside the participants’ work.

Participants shared images, wrote statements and chose collectively which images to be printed bigger and framed for the exhibition.

This exhibition is a celebration of the hard work of everyone and the amazing images that they produced!

Project run in partnership by CREST and The Customs House.




Thanks to the Garfield Weston Fund and the Covid Community Champions Fund for making this project possible.




Virtual Tour:

Click and drag to scroll around the screen and click the arrows to move between locations. To view a close up of the artwork click the artwork. If you’re viewing this on a mobile device with access to Google Cardboard, press the VR view button in the top right corner to view in split-screen VR.