1911 Festival of Empire

In May 2021, UAL Knowledge Exchange impact funding enabled DWN members Lucy Panesar and Lydia Wilks to collaborate on editing the Wikipedia page for the 1911 Festival of Empire. The screenshots below are before and after the page’s contents list was edited. Prior to their edit, the page had little to no information about the festival’s context, it’s exhibits and it’s critical appraisal, so Lydia and Lucy started by adding new sections for this.

1911 Festival of Empire Wikipedia page contents, before editing
1911 Festival of Empire Wikipedia page contents, after editing

They added a section entitled ‘Exhibits on the All Red-Route’, the red route being an electrical tramway that took festival visitors around scenes replicating the so-called “dominions”. They also added a series of archival images of these scenes, courtesy of the Crystal Palace Museum, and some contextual information pertaining to the colonial scenes that were depicted.

For Lydia and Lucy, adding the ‘Critical Appraisal’ section was a vital element of the Wikipedia edit and their position on writing this section was very much from a decolonial standpoint. They wanted to open up a critical dialogue to showcase an alternative perspective on the 1911 Festival of Empire, to highlight and really recognise the multitude of exploitation that occurred at the hands of the British Empire, and how this event played a role in further cementing pre-existing negative and inaccurate stereotypes of what it looked like to be from Africa or India.

Shirazeh Houshiary

by Alex Duncan
Exhibitions were added to this page as found in the Recordings document to increase the amount of reliable, widely available information on the artist.


Alvaro Barrington

by Matt Lingard
Matt created this page from scratch – you can read about his process on his blog.

New York Cabaret Law

Added information about the activism of Dance Liberation Network (co-founded by Frankie Decaiza Hutchinson) and its importance in the repeal of the law.


Armet Francis

by Emma Sproat
Emma added in a most recent exhibition of photographer Armet Francis.



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