Suicide: Missed Calls, Guilt & Goodbyes #OKNotToBeOK

It was the last Bank holiday in May, a Monday morning, 8am, and I received a text from one of my closest friends asking if it was okay to call.

I got that sinking feeling.

Firstly, because close friends don't ask permission to call. Well, not mine anyway - they wake my ass up at all hours for things ranging from nail varnish colours (anyone who knows me knows how ridiculous this is), to juice recipes, needing my AA cover to get towed home or just to say hi.

My first thought - are the kids ok? My second - is she? My third - what the fuck's wrong! I don't recall the beginning of the conversation, or if there were any pleasantries or formalities. I don't know if she heard the panic in my voice, that I always try to play down, and is often mistaken for nonchalance, when I really do care.

I just remember the softly spoken voice of a usually cheeky and often loud friend saying, "David passed away." Read more

Brixton Underground Film Festival to 'bring the screen back to the people' | Event Preview

Clearview Productions will be presenting the Brixton Underground Film Festival from 30th September - 6th October. The pop-up film festival will showcase seven films across seven days at seven different venues, all of which will be announced 24 hours before airing. Read more

George the Poet does spoken word piece over Frank Ocean's 'Pink Matter' | Poetry Video

Twenty-one-year-old spoken word artist George the Poet provides an amazing delivery with his take on Frank Ocean's "Pink Matter." Read more

'The Art of Chess' exhibition at Saatchi Gallery begins Sept. 8 | Art News

Said to have originated in India around the 7th century, Chess, formerly known as "Chaturanga," has long been a popular choice for contemporary artists. The Saatchi Gallery's upcoming exhibition The Art of Chess explores the 21st century take on the classic game with specially-commissioned pieces from artists such as Damien Hirst, Yayoi Kusama, Tracey Emin and Rachel Whiteread -- whose love of dollhouses inspired her to create the miniature furniture pieces. Read more

Dean Atta secures publishing deal for poetry collection | Books News

It was only a few weeks ago that we were telling you about the release of acclaimed poet Dean Atta's free EP Love or Money. He received a lot of love for his poetry EP, including a review by MTV, and now it looks like he's got the money aspect sorted too! Read more

The National Theatre introduces 'Entry Pass' membership scheme for young persons | Theatre News

If you're aged 16-25 and an avid theatre goer -- or have thought about going but are discouraged by high-priced tickets -- then this is for you!

The National Theatre is running a free membership scheme for young people, providing a limited number of £5 tickets for every performance shown at the theatre. The scheme, dubbed "Entry Pass," also boasts other member's discounts such as backstage tours (also £5), discounted costume and props hire, the opportunity to attend workshops with industry professionals and a "mates rates" ticket so you don't have to worry about going alone. It also gives you 10% off at select bars and restaurants, so with the savings you make on your tickets, why not make a night of it?

For further information about the scheme and to sign up for your FREE Entry Pass, click the image below.

Location: National Theatre, Upper Ground, South Bank, London, SE1 9PX.

Dean Atta - 'Love or Money' EP | Review

Award-winning poet and acclaimed writer Dean Atta released his new poetry EP Love or Money about a week ago and has already been mentioned by several media sources, including a review by MTV. With all this attention, it'd be easy to forget that this is a poetry EP and not a chart-selling music compilation. Read more

'Street's Disciples' art collection at Bernie Grant Arts Centre | Art News

Terrence Adegbenle's collection is currently being displayed at the Bernie Grant Art Centre as part of the "More Than XY" exhibition.

Titled "Street's Disciples," the collection features some amazing portraits that combine Adegbenle's oil drawings with his friend Dapo Adeola's black-and-white illustrations. Inspired by Adegbenle's dissertation for his Fine Arts degree and named after Nas' 2004 album, the collection aims to inspire young people through art.

The "More Than XY" initiative aims to bring awareness to the fathers who are active in their children's lives and celebrate their role and that of other positive role models in the black community.

I love the concept, and Adegbenle and Adeola's craftmanship is outstanding. However, rather than using only UK rappers who speak about social, political and/or religious issues, I would've loved to also see a black politician, a well known youth worker and/or a pastor/minister from a popular church amongst those representing the positive role models.

Nevertheless, it's an amazing collection that you should get down to see -- and it's free, so there's really no excuse! Fathers, take your daughters and sons. Mothers, do the same. Aunts, uncles, grandparents and friends alike, it is all of our jobs to inspire the youth of tomorrow so get involved and get down there!

For more of Adegbenle's work, check out his portfolio and catch him on Twitter @TerrenceAde.

Exhibit Details:
Date: Now until Friday 27th July, 2012
Location: Bernie Grant Arts Centre, Town Hall Approach Road, Tottenham Green, London, N15 4RX
Tickets: FREE for all
Hours: Mon-Fri, 9am-6pm

[Source: Niji Mag x Bernie Grant Arts Centre]

Graffiti 'vandal' jailed for £80,000 worth of damage | Art News

Harry Finn-Conway was sentenced yesterday at Harrow Crown court to 12 months in jail for graffiti tagging several landmarks and properties belonging to London Underground System. The 22-year-old Kensal Rise art student, who is a well-known graffiti artist, was charged with 13 counts of criminal damage to property resulting in repairs costing at least £80,000. Read more

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British Film Institute lays out five-year plan, wants to increase investments | Film News

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Wind in the Willows sketch sells for £37,000 | Art News

A sketch of "Rat," "Mole" and "Mr. Toad" from the classic children's book The Wind in the Willows has sold for £37,000 at auction. Hand drawn by illustrator Ernest Shepard when he was 90 years old, the sketch was won by a London dealer after a fierce battle in the auction room. Read more

Book Slam bring lit & laughs w/ James Sallis + Tony Law to London's Tabernacle, May 31

Book Slam returns to The Tabernacle, Notting Hill on May 31st, its rightful home and a fitting venue. The event is in it's eighth year and fuses fiction with spoken word, live music, comedians and poets. Read more