London Art Scene

Why we’ve started putting on exhibitions instead of just writing about them… (the state of the London art scene)…

And so the time has come for the second group show that Artsleuth has been involved in curating, organising, and in the same breath co-founding a collective of over fifty emerging artists, blah blah, yes. The opening party is tonight. Here is a few sneak preview pics below…

Its been an awesome experience, and it feels like there is so much more to this project and ways to grow this thing.

The idea came together with an artist from Finland, Nora Emilia, who paints incredible portraits and never exhibits. Why? Because she has no artistic network here in London, and she can’t afford to exhibit in an expensive show, she doesn’t know any galleries that will give her a chance, how to go about the whole thing and can’t even afford her own studio. So she just paints in her house and the cat gets all the joy.

Sod it, we thought. If we could only just find a space at minimum rent and enough artists in the same position, we might just be able to do something about it ourselves.

There is so much exciting fresh art coming out of London still, but these are not the boom days where anyone could find a half-empty butchers on Brick Lane and set up a speakeasy selling cans of red stripe. Venues are hard to come by at cheap rent. East and now South London has gone to the boring office workers and post-hipsters as we all know, and so those budding artists have retreated to their bedrooms. On top of that, although there are small pockets of artists living in one area, like Tottenham, this is a very different environment from the likes of Tracey Emin/Sarah Lucas and particularly those that followed them and eventually triggered actual galleries opening up all around Bethnal Green and the East End. In those days there was a concentrated mass of artists and art lovers living in one place, with Brick Lane, Redchurch and Vyner Street at the epicentre. People trawled around the streets every Thursday knowing they would stumble across openings without checking if anything was on. You had your audience right there in a place where you could fall over the empty cheap spaces.

But in this harsher environment. THERE IS STILL HOPE! we shout. YOU CAN STILL DO IT IF YOU WANT TO – JUST DO IT.

With the Bedroom Artists Collective we are not thinking small. For our first show we found a huge ‘meanwhile’ ex-office space taken on by the Hive Dalston for community projects who charge minimum rent for art shows (and are lovely, lovely people too). We put a call out in artjobs.co.uk and lo-and-behold over 50 artists responded. All worked without studios, had day jobs or studied or both, all loved the idea. By the time we got down to the nitty-gritty we still had 36 artists and we put on an incredible show. Photos below – but read on because there is more!

The Hive event showed the huge interest out there for low level, rough and ready exhibitions. In reality they are the best type of exhibition, because not only are you enjoying the art but how a space has been used creatively for something it wasn’t meant to be used for. And if its temporary too, it makes it a unique experience.

People can’t even afford the rent on their own flats these days let alone a studio space, or the extra time, the effort, it takes to promote yourself as an artists, to get that extra level more advanced at your practice (and your passion) on top of your day job. Its a real struggle for most artists out there that are ’emerging’ or as we now like to say ‘submerged’ because some of them have been that way for years.

It all comes down to money (and lack of it).

So the Bedroom Artists Collective want to bridge the gap. We didn’t know we did but the more we work on this project the more we realise that is exactly how we fit in. We’re giving artists a leg up. Once you exhibit you get that buzz, you want to do it again, you get more ideas, you see your work up in a gallery space, it makes you think – what should I do next? Not only that you get the chance to find other artists, collaborate or help each other in some way, you get promotion through the collectives online channels, you get something on your portfolio, you get to network with other artists and you get your artwork out there to new audiences.

And what does everyone else get? To see exciting, unusual art that pushes the boundaries in weird unusual spaces. And we find that a lot of the people that come to the shows do some sort of creativity themselves in their homes, and it gets them thinking too. Possibly inspiring them.

So we think if you want to go round the establishment you still can. Its exactly the same as it always was. And the more people that do it the better.

So for anyone out there with big ideas or beautiful incredible things sitting in their home, its not that hard if you have a bunch of people to do it with you (and you can find them easily through artjobs and other sites), and you can do it on a shoe-string just like we did (our budget for the Hive show was £400 for 36 artists exhibiting and we split the bill between everyone). It just takes a bit of creative thinking and that’s what artists are good at right? There will be abandoned spaces near you, there will be spaces that owners don’t know what to do with, just sitting there, that will welcome a bit of money for an event that brings people to their place.

Anyway…it’s interesting being on the other side.

n.b: Come and check out our second show on Brick Lane. This one is a little show, with 14 artists, we got the space in a basement with the door directly onto Brick Lane itself because the owner wasn’t using the space, for an incredibly cheap rent – we found that if you just ask sometimes you get. This time we wanted to try a show curated on a theme. We’d love to see you there Artsleuth readers 🙂 see the facebook invite below:

The Carnal & The Concrete: Group Show, Bedroom Artists Collective

If you are interested in joining our collective we’d love to have you. Email us at bedroomartists@gmail.com

bedroomartists.org

Next time… back to regular Artsleuth business!

 

 

New Sensations and The Future Can Wait ’14

 

Gavin Nolan

From Here to Eternity, Gavin Nolan, 2014, Oil on Canvas.

Joella Wheatley, Back to the drawing board, 2014

Back to the Drawing Board, Joella Wheatley, 2014, Oil, Acrylic, Pen on Canvas.

The Future Can Wait 2014

Melody 2014, Wendy Mayer, Vanity case, painted reborn doll parts, mohair, baby nightdress, music box movement. 28 x 36 x 26 cm

The Dance Clarie Partington

The Dance, Claire Partington, 2014, Earthenware, Tin Glaze, Enamel, Luster

Mr and Mrs Phillip Cath

The Awakening Conscience, Mr and Mrs Phillip Cath, 2014, Oil on Canvas

Air Heads, Emily Motto, 2014

Air Heads, Emily Motto, 2014, Rising dough and found objects

C.O.C.K, Oliver Clegg, 2014

C.O.C.K, Oliver Clegg, 2014 (how many cocks can you count?)

New Jersey, Sarah McGintity

New Jersey, Sarah McGinity, 2014, Oil on Canvas

 Untitled, David Sailva

Untitled, David Sailva, 2014, Beewax and Wood

Unknown Artist, The Future Can Wait 2014

Unknown Artist, The Future Can Wait 2014

 

Amicably sitting side by side once again is Saatchi’s New Sensations group exhibition, showcasing emerging talent, and The Future Can Wait with their select display of ‘mid-career’ artists.

It’s become a good pairing because you can see the development in artists’ work from those just starting out to the more established in the next room. Plus it’s interesting because inevitably a lot of artists that first show in New Sensations then exhibit with The Future Can Wait a few years later.

One thing that’s noticeable between the two exhibitions is the difference in approach to sculpture and installation. The TFCW’s has more refined, tongue-in-cheek artwork, but with this sacrifices a more playful approach to things. New Sensations displays a number of different large found-object arrangements and earthy land art style pieces. The sort of pieces that take influences from the late 70’s movement such as Woodrow and Long. The outstanding contribution comes from Daniel Silva who uses materials such as beeswax and found wooden items to create wholesome and effective compositions.

Another artist featured strongly in the NS show is Emily Motto whose clever use of playdoh and rising bread oozing slowly through porous materials in luminous colours creates ever changing, playful installations.

TFCW was exhibiting the surreal work of an Wendy Meyer who has made touchingly comic waxworks of new-born babies – they are so small they can fit in gravy boats, jewellery boxes and wine crates – referencing the work of Ron Mueck. 

Also showing was Claire Partington‘s incredibly fine ceramics depicting two Tudor ladies with detailed finery having a fight so violent it has drawn blood.

One more thing to ponder on. A macabre oil painting by Mr and Mrs Phillip Cath called The Awakening Conscience. Is this something to make us think twice about eating pigs? According to scientists a full grown pig has the mental age of a 1.5 year old, so is this a depiction of the pig’s awakening conscience as well as ours? Answers in the comment box please (or a postcard if you’d prefer).

 

New Sensations and The Future Can Wait are on until the 18th of October 2014

B1 . VICTORIA HOUSE . BLOOMSBURY SQUARE
London . WC1B 4DA . UNITED KINGDOM . 11AM – 6PM

 

The Secret Art Prize at the Curious Duke Gallery

Mohammed Sami, Immigrant

Olivia Yu

Olivia Yu, The Pac-Man Race, 70 x 100 cm

Guest Frames

The Curious Duke gallery shares premises with Taylored Frames Ltd; the Framer himself here at the opening with his pet rat.

 

The Curious Duke Gallery launched their first Secret Art Prize at their residency on the infamous street for urban art, Whitecross Street, in early September. The founder Eleni Duke says there is no similar prize to encourage Surrealist and Urban Art in the UK and that’s why she’s championing this opportunity for unrepresented emerging artists working in that field.

They had over 160 applicants with the top ten selected artists having their entries exhibited from now until 27th of September.

The winning painting by Mohammed Sami is a depiction of a faceless immigrant straining under a a canopy of luggage.

Olivia Yu with her fluorescent colour palette and marbled, textured, abstract canvases won the Peoples Choice Award.

Whitecross Street itself has a constantly regenerating display of street art along it, and one of the judges, Teddy Baden, is a street artist and organiser of the Whitecross St Art Party every summer was a judge.

 

Curious Duke Gallery – 173 Whitecross St, London EC1Y 8JT; the Secret Art Prize is on till 27th of September.

 

 

Kevin Morosky: on Notorious BIG, #MYNAMEIS, photography and his London

Kevin Morosky Billboard #mynameis

Kevin Morosky‘s work is part of the current arts project #MYNAMEIS brought to you by Anni Arts, taking place on billboards across London from June 21st-July 7th.

Tell us about the #MYNAMEIS project currently showing around London and why you’re involved?

#MYNAMEIS is a group exhibition involving 4 other artists and looking at the meaning of names. Having a billboard to exhibit your work on was a opportunity that I couldn’t miss, plus tackling this subject in the current political climate was a great challenge to take on.

What is it about London that gets you inspired?

I can’t say that I am inspired by London to be honest, I am comforted by London and feel understood by London. Loved and needed. I love that I know when entering Tottenham Court Road tube station the quickest way to the platform is taking the stairs to your right. London is my home, my side of the bed.. It’s an old friend that sits happily in comfortable silence with me.

What is your favourite thing to do in London? (it can be anything not just art based)

Dinner at Bob Bob Ricard, Deptford Junk Market on a Saturday, Shoreditch House roof on any sunny day. Columbia Road Flower Market on a Sunday. Driving to Wandsworth drive through McDonald‘s at early hours of the morning ordering food and catching jokes, I used to do that all the time with my best friend before she moved to L.A, still one of my favourite things though. I’m a creature of habit. Anything personal and gentle.

Why is photography your chosen medium?

I started taking picture because I wanted to imitate the images brought to mind by Biggies smalls raps. Regards to mediums I have a few but I never wanted to be one of these slasher kids as in “I’m a DJ / artist / skater / brain surgeon” I think that shit’s wack, I just figured I’d get my receipts for one medium, while privately practising the others. Then bit by bit I’d drop new projects not necessarily related to photography. So for instance I deigned a print and collaborated with London brand Oh My love.

What advice would you have to aspiring artists/photographers out there?

Nobody owes you anything. Nobody has to believe in you. Creatives deserve holidays too. Practice, don’t just wait for jobs, practice your craft. I know what my schedule is for work and goals are for up until Aug 2015, setting goals is important. It doesn’t matter if you don’t always hit them. Mistakes are awesome, do not be afraid of them. People were gossiping before your mum and dad made sweet love, and they’ll be doing it when you’re dead and gone. Pay them no mind. Do not hold grudges in business, by doing so you are burning bridges you didn’t even know you wanted to cross let alone had to. You can not make a pound without a 100 pennies, by that I mean, everything you do adds up. Everything.

What projects / ideas have you got in the pipe line? Where are you going next?

Working on a new collection with OML, finishing off my documentary. Given : A sharing . Another collaboration that’s about empowering women, as well as a whole new exhibition dedicated to women. Art direction on a few musical projects. As well as a musical project.

Describe your photography in ten words

Love. Thoughtful. Moment. Magic. Easy. Real. Memory. Roshak. Frank. Good.

 

www.morosky.co.uk Mgmt. : Damaris@milkartist.com / Tom@milkartist.com

Please remember the Notorious BIG was the best rapper

 

#MYNAMEIS billboard locations are as follows:

Gillian Wearing by Gillian Wearing – London Bridge Station, SE1 9SL – Billboard no 1331
Lateefa Smith / Chang Jian Wen by Kevin Morosky – 178 Westbourne Grove, W11 2AD – Billboard no 1458
Annie Mac by Annie Mackin- Camden Town, Camden Road Station, NW1 9LS – Billboard no 1105
London Bridge Arizona Arizona London Bridge’ by Duval Timothy – London Bridge Station, Duke Street Hill, SE1 2SW – Billboard no 8171
Karley Sciortino by Nastasia Alberti – 129/127 Hackney Road, E2 7QS – Billboard no 0237

 

‘Sticks and Drones’ Eric Yahnker at Paradise Row

Speed Bumps Eric Yahnker Paradise Row

Speed Bumps 2014,  coloured pencil on paper

Fingering Crisco Eric Yahnker, Paradise Row

Fingering Crisco 2014, coloured pencil on paper

Full Bloomberg, Eric Yahnker, Paradise Row

Full Bloomberg 2014, coloured pencil on paper

Six-Stings Succulent, 2014 artificial cactus, guitar, scarf

Wrecking Ball, Eric Yahnker, Paradise Row

Wrecking Ball, 2014, coloured pencil on paper

Crimean River, 2014, charcoal and graphite on paper

 Soon-Yi, Eric Yahnker, Paradise Row

Soon-Yi, 2014, graphite on paper

Sittin’ on a Rainbow, 2014, 10 Mariah Carey LP’s

Short Shorts Shorty, 2014, plaster, shorts.

 

Sticks and Drones is a witty and concise exhibition covering a well-trod topic; the sickly sweet American dream. How a nation sells itself through sex, Budweiser and pop. Half a century on from Warhol, Hamilton and the rest, Eric Yahnker brings a refreshingly suggestive and cynical edge to the Pop Art genre. In fact ‘Fingering Crisco’ 2014, could be seen as direct comment on Pop Art and how we look at those artworks through our cynical 21st century eyes.

Yahnker questions the state of the nation. Obama looks out of the White House and what does he see?  Miley Cyrus on the wrecking ball. The Woody Allen step-daughter scandal is alluded to shrewdly through the semiotics of Yoon Yi’s name written with Woody Allen’s face replacing the OO’s.

Not only does sex sell, it keeps the economy afloat; the OO’s in Bloomberg are replaced by two huge breasts. Fish net underwear straddles wooden cut-outs of the US map which have been made into a hanging mobile.

Yahnker’s work is well executed, fresh and amusing. You can see why he has worked on projects such as South Park and Seinfeld. His sense of humour is on point and tuned in. Paradise Row is on to a winner of a show.

Brett Amory: Twenty-Four in London

http://www.lazinc.com/exhibitions/593,brett-amory-twenty-four-in-london Brett Amory 1

Twenty-Four In London Brett Armory 2

Brett Amory has picked London for his third ‘Twenty-Four’ project where he produces 24 artworks from a study of 24 places around a city; firstly filming a particular spot in each location then producing an artwork out of his study.

The culmination of this is a collection of incredibly insightful works. They are only a snapshot – homing in on one piece of the street – but in that moment he captures people going about their daily lives, the architecture and the atmosphere.  He grasps London’s multifaceted personality so well you would think he was a local.

His artworks are inclusive of any media he has at his disposal from the location. The paintings are surrounded by found printed matter – rubbish, old tickets and trinkets. He has also built audio tapes into some of the displays, and some paintings contain collage and surrounding wooden awnings to simulate shop fronts. They are not really necessary additions; you get a strong sense of London life just from the paintings alone without the peripheral media, but they are mementos – like something a tourist would collect for a scrap book. With these additions his studies become almost nostalgic.

In the far corner of the exhibition you’ll find 24 televisions showing the films of each of the locations. These show how Amory has pulled out a contemplative setting, composition and palette from the seemingly mundane and mismatched.

Amory sees poetry in a kebab shop and once you have seen through his eyes you do too.

Showing at Lazerides, Rathbone Place till the 3rd of April.

A Magic Carpet ride in The Crypt Gallery

Contemporary art where you least expect it is what is so great about London, and the little known gallery in the crypt of St Pancras Church which opens for (so short you could easily miss them) group exhibitions is a perfect example.

Magic Carpet is 14 artists’ work based around the theme of Time Travel. Walking among gravestones and bits of broken masonry you can’t help but see references to transience appearing in the works in front of you.

Most of the art is small and spread out quite thinly over the impressive space, a shame as it would have been good to see a bit more from each artist. Near the entrance, Luna Paiva’s manipulated photograph of a woman plucking a bird, perfectly set into a scene of rich and dark  ‘baroque realism’ (if that exists) instantly catches the eye. As does the red velvetine skull skewered on a hat stand in the vault next door by David. A. Smith.

Some basic installations from Michael Murphy are displayed and David Cochrane has exhibited some thoughtful works, a video of a moving ‘still’ of a riverbank projected onto a wall and another using easily found objects. Several painters are exhibiting, including the part figurative part dissembled portrait paintings by Jill Mulleady and Lindsey Bull’s burry visions of a psychedelic world.

For more work by the artists mentioned see here:

http://www.lunapaiva.com/

www.davidasmithart.co.uk

www.jillmulleady.com

www.dacochrane.com

www.michaelthomasmurphy.co.uk

http://www.lindseybull.com/