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A Breath of Fresh Air Festival

  • Free
  • Festival
  • Youth event
Photo of a group of young people sat down cross-legged on the floor whilst smiling and clapping.
A Breath of Fresh Air. Photo: Susan Smart. Source: Wellcome Collection. © All rights reserved.

What you’ll do

The climate crisis can feel overwhelming, and sometimes we all need a moment to catch our breath. Join artists, activists and other young people in a festival inspired by our ‘In the Air’ exhibition.

This programme of events is designed for 14- to 19-year-olds.

Keeping you safe

We have made plans to keep you safe during your visit. Here are some specific things we are doing for this event:

  • We will check how many people are in each space and ensure that it doesn't feel too busy.
  • Our Visitor Experience team will be available if you have any questions. They will be happy to walk you through to different parts of the building if it is helpful.



Past events

  • Performance
Standards on Air
The Forum
During this event, you can enjoy conversations and performances from spoken-word artists, musicians and more. Co-hosts Amaarah Roze and Chiquita Delisser will also be asking for your honest, unfiltered opinions. Part of SOUNDS LiKE CHAOS: ON AIR, a programme including film, performance, conversations and other activities led by the Young Associates from SOUNDS LiKE CHAOS.

  • Workshop
Zine-making Workshop with Zoe Thompson
Level 1 Landing
Bring together your art and activism to create your own zine, inspired by the ‘In The Air’ exhibition. Zines are traditionally self-published, mixed-media publications. They have their roots in niche communities and protest, as well as in the realm of fan fiction – the term zine is derived from ‘fanzine’. The workshop is part of SOUNDS LiKE CHAOS: ON AIR.

  • Discussion
It’s Getting Hot in Here Podcast
Studio Breakout Room
Have your say on climate change. Hosts Phoebe Fairchild, Ndabane Makukula and Chiquita Delisser will be recording interviews with young people for their podcast. They’ll ask questions related to the air we breathe, the importance of the youth voice and how young people feel about the climate emergency. Sign up at the festival if you’d like to take part. Part of SOUNDS LiKE CHAOS: ON AIR

  • Discussion
Climate Conversations
Throughout our building
Have a chat with Marlo Savin, a wellbeing researcher who'll be roaming around the building interviewing young people to support his research on climate anxiety. He’ll also signpost you to useful wellbeing resources. Part of SOUNDS LiKE CHAOS: ON AIR.

  • Screening
The Studio
Watch a series of short films exploring the story of the climate emergency as told through realities facing the diaspora communities in Lewisham. A film created by Sounds Like Chaos in collaboration with VIDEOfeet and composer Keir Vine. Part of SOUNDS LiKE CHAOS: ON AIR.
  • Captioned
  • Relaxed

  • Workshop
Seaweed Sunprints
Viewing Room
Join us in celebrating the Earth’s biggest oxygen producer: the humble seaweed. Inspired by the works of 19th-century botanist and photographer Anna Atkins, we’ll be discovering more about important women seaweed collectors and cyanotyping. In this workshop you will create cyanotypes that will add to our collective archive of seaweed prints.

  • Gallery tour
‘In the Air’ Guided Tour
Gallery 2
Join Jessica Rayner from our Visitor Experience team for a tour that looks at London’s rich history of air pollution activism. Inspired by objects and artwork in the ‘In The Air’ exhibition, this session will explore the ways in which the city has been shaped by campaigning for cleaner air. We'll be meeting at the exhibition entrance on Level 1.

  • Discussion
Justice For the Air We Breathe
Reading Room
Join Angela Chan in conversation with musician Love Ssega, writer Claire Ratinon and activist Janine Francois to discuss the relationship between climate, race and health. You’ll hear about their work and activism before breaking off into smaller groups with individual speakers to continue your climate conversations. You’ll have the opportunity to listen, ask questions and share your opinions.
  • Relaxed

  • Chill out
Chill-Out Room
Level 2
Any time during the festival that you want to find a space away from the programme of activities, you can come to the Chill-Out Room to lie down or relax. There will be low lighting, comfortable seating, cushions and mats throughout the room. Make use of ear defenders, earplugs, board games and materials with different textures.
  • Relaxed

Need to know


This is a large-scale event with several different activities. Check specific sub-events for their locations.

For more information, please visit our Accessibility page. If you have any queries about accessibility, please email us at access@wellcomecollection.org or call 0 2 0. 7 6 1 1. 2 2 2 2

Our event terms and conditions

About your contributors

Sounds Like Chaos


Sounds Like Chaos is a radical, youth arts collective of 12- to 25-year-olds from south-east London, led by co-directors Gemma Rowan and Roisin Feeny. They make work that is responsive to our time, creating urgent, accessible, cultural interventions through the lens of their collective. The Young Associates are young artists and producers affiliated to Sounds Like Chaos. They are socially engaged and look to create change by working with the people in the local community and making art based on the things they care about.

Black and white photograph of Angela Chan knelt down on rocky terrain.

Angela YT Chan


Angela YT Chan is an independent researcher, curator and artist specialising in climate change. Her work reconfigures power in relation to the inequity of climate change through self-archiving, rethinking geographies and speculative fiction. Since 2014, Angela has produced curatorial projects and workshops as Worm: art + ecology, collaborating with artists, activists and youth groups. She co-directs the London Science Fiction Research Community and is also a research consultant, having worked in international climate and cultural policy and on climate and sustainability projects for major cultural institutions.

Claire Rainton

Claire Ratinon


Claire Ratinon is an organic food grower and writer who has grown edible plants in a variety of roles, including growing organic vegetables for the Ottolenghi restaurant, ROVI. Claire has shared her growing journey in talks for organisations including the Garden Museum, Barbican Centre and Royal Botanical Garden, Edinburgh, as well as contributing to Radio 4’s ‘Gardeners’ Question Time’. She’s also the author of two books: ‘How To Grow Your Dinner Without Leaving The House’ and ‘Unearthed: On Race and Roots, and How the Soil Taught Me I Belong’.

Photograph of Love Ssega looking down at the camera

Love Ssega


Love Ssega is a musician and artist who has performed at festivals from Glastonbury to Lake of Stars, Malawi to Strawberry Festival, China. As a diverse and varied solo artist, his performance pieces have been commissioned by the National Gallery and the Serpentine Pavilion, with visual art shown at MoMA PS1 in New York with Slow Factory. His work as original frontman and founding songwriter for Clean Bandit landed in the UK charts and has also been performed globally. As a result of his creative work and advocacy, Love Ssega was invited to speak at United Nations COP26 in Glasgow and recently by the New York Times for Climate Forward.