© 2017 SamiArt

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Inspire & Share

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About Samia
 

Samia is an accomplished freelance artist, workshop facilitator, arts organiser and festival director with many years’ experience developing and leading community arts engagement projects and co-directing festivals. She specialises in arts engagement and provides participatory, inclusive, arts events and workshops for all ages, creating community through arts by encouraging the spirit of creative playfulness in her participants.

 

Her workshops and events are vibrant, colourful, fun and her ‘inspire & share’ ethos ensures a space where people feel free to communicate their thoughts, exchange ideas and share stories while learning a transferable creative skill or being part of a creative event. When we tune in to that spirit of playfulness we can feel joy, we can feel connected and we can smile.

 

She started facilitating multi-disciplinary inclusive arts workshops for community groups in the London Borough of Sutton in 2008 as a freelance community artist and instantly realised the value of creating a welcoming space for imagination to flow 'without judgement' and of bringing a joyful smile to people's faces through creative play. This early experience shaped the inspire and share ethos which permeates her creative practice, from design to delivery of multi-disciplinary art projects, from project management to networking and collaboration. Enthusing, empowering and enabling participants to use their, in some cases, dormant creative abilities for self-expression, never ceases to lighten the heart.

 

She went on to develop a touring community art project, SamiArt & The Silk Road and used silk painting as the playful, colourful, medium to inspire imagination, creativity, conversation. The Silk Road project strengthened her belief that the arts have the power to transform lives and communities, to create unity through diversity, to open the door to dialogue. For this reason, she spent two years coordinating a Community Art Space in an empty shop unit in a local shopping centre, initially exhibiting her Silk Road projects and offering free workshops, then coordinating a programme of month-long exhibitions hosted by individual artists, local arts collaborations, schools, and community groups to bring arts for all to the heart of the High St.

 

Forming stronger, positive connections with the wider arts community led to several collaborative multi-disciplinary projects with local artists and she received a Cultural Award for outstanding contribution to the community as part of the Team Imagineers collaboration which she coordinated, and in that same year, she co-directed Sutton's Imagine Festival of Participatory Arts. In 2013 she took a voluntary role on the working party of the local arts council, shaping & overseeing its transition to Arts Network Sutton, becoming its Chair, acting as a voice for the local arts community, diversifying and increasing its membership, networking effectively and forming stronger relationships from grassroots to corporate level. She was subsequently nominated for Trustee of The Year Award in recognition of her invaluable contribution to the voluntary sector.


To balance the energy needs to 'give' she makes time to focus on her own need for self-expression and works on her evolving range of #SamiArtStyle finger knitted apparel and doodle art, exhibiting and popping up with her stall at markets, events and in cafes since summer 2017

 

 
"Inspire & share through creative communication"

 

 
Samia Tossio
SamiArt