Phoebe and Elizabeth Cope, Open Studios

Next time you happen to be in Kennington you should find time to have a glance at the paintings in the small bay window of number 6 Windmill Row, a sleepy village-like row of shops just off Kennington Road. Here is the home and studio of Elizabeth Cope, the Irish-born artist.

This month it’s her daughter Phoebe Cope who has taken residency, working on new paintings – mostly large-scale oil works – with an intense palette of bright colours. Her work is classically and art historically minded, scenes taken from Italian houses and London monuments, also figurative works and some sculptures. You can track an obvious influence from Matisse’s work and those who followed him, combined with a folk-like semblance. 

She evolves what starts as realistic landscapes in several ways, sometimes by creating highly detailed, colourful and patterned versions – a craft-like side to her work which brings out beautiful and imaginative elements. More of a surrealist edge comes into play in some of the works – objects, faces, house interiors and parts of other landscapes are fused into the overall space creating a mythical narrative between the parts. In the above paintings they are taken from Classical history and Shakespearian stories (‘Journeys’ as Phoebe refers them).

Recently she has had sitters for portraits, locals who pop by, part of what seems to be a bit of a South London community of like-minded people including a local politician and a journalist from a London paper. A piece she is working on, an enormous canvas rolled up in the corner of the room, is in the process of becoming a life-sized group portrait of her friends which will hopefully will be on show for her open evening coming up next week on the 22 June. 


 tube: Kennington, Vauxhall bus: 3,59,159, (opposite Pizza Express)

Open Daily

+44 (0)20 7735 2085



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