The Art House's Darkroom

Points of engagement and spaces for collaboration are an important pillar of Emily's practice. She manages and teaches in The Art House's (TAH) community darkroom, activating this as a space for learning and experimentation with people of all ages and abilities. Within her time in the Darkroom, Emily leads workshops with TAH's Studio of Sanctuary group, Arts & Health Programme and works with local schools and colleges - as well as curating exhibitions and events that celebrate contemporary photography and image archives.

Doing & Undoing Islands, Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Emily Ryalls and Tom Lovelace brought their collaborative project Doing & Undoing Islands to Yorkshire Sculpture Park in September 2023, as part of the Curiosity and Wonder programme. This ongoing research project, between Ryalls and Tom Lovelace, focuses on the themes of landscape and home, using the body, light, and paper as materials for experimentation. Initiated in 2021, the artists have continued to develop the works through conversation, points of engagement, and explorative movement/image making.

Yorkshire Sculpture Park hosted both the performance and a free drop in workshop for those visiting the park that day. The workshop saw the artists starting conversations and encouraging creative play, using the materials which are central to the performance. The public were invited to contribute to a collective installation of experimental sculpture and shape in response to the themes of Doing & Undoing Islands - home, landscape, and memory.

Photogreening, Mafwa Theatre

Emily was commissioned Mafwa Theatre to facilitate a series of photography workshops with residents living local to Lincoln Green, Leeds. Mafwa were committed to developing a previously neglected public space (surrounded by high rise flats), transforming it into the site of a new thriving community garden that local people could feel pride and ownership for. Emily facilitated two photowalks, focused on the theme of gardens and green space. The groups learnt how to work with 35mm point and shoot cameras and went on to process their own photographs. We then collectively pasted the photographs onto the brick of the new community green space, creating the first exhibition to launch the Roxby Close garden.

On June 18th 2022 Mafwa Theatre held a summer festival bringing the community together for Refugee Week. A Roxby Close Get Together included:

  • Photogreening - A photography installation mapping out the gardens and green spaces of Lincoln Green. 
  • The launch of a brand new mural painted for the garden
  • Newly planted plant beds and vegetable patch designed and planted by Lincoln Greeners gardening group
  • Craft activities
  • Face painting
  • Music 
  • Food

The space continues to grow and thrive as a vibrant new community garden, hosting events, get togethers, and quiet moments for residents.

Summer S'cool, Wakefield Council

In 2022, Emily was one of five teaching artists partnered with a community centre, to plan and facilitate free creative experiences to young people aged 7-12. The sessions included, photography, ceramics, drawing and painting, textiles, and more. Following the programme, Emily was the lead curator on the Summer S'cool exhibition which launched at The Art House in September 2022 - bringing together the works of participating young people across the district.

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