Up Your Street. Issue 10

Tues Mar 21st £1 on the first day of Spring.10-1pm. Hilary Davis’ Tuesday’s Sociable Sewing at the Mill Coppermill Lane E17. Bring your own sewing project or follow Hilary’s suggestions.

free 1-6pm Art exhibition at Memorial Church in Barking Road. Women artists. Open weekends an Tuesdays until April 8th.

Wed Mar 22nd free “Local Art Exhibition by the very talented students and teacher at Forest Gate Learning Zone’s Fine Art Classes.
The exhibition takes place at Forest Gate Arts, 11 Upton Lane E7 9PA

from Wednesday 22 March until Saturday 1 April (except Monday 27 March).

Many of these fine art works will be for sale at very affordable prices.”

(Thank you, Richard and Anna, for sharing).

Fri Mar 24th free 12-5pm drop in Photo fun at Pembury Centre in Hackney. The Posh Club presents some senior fun. Glad rags and elegant wear.

Mon Mar 27th free 6.30pm Tate Modern Starr Cinema screens “Frida” as a nod to International Women’s Day. Long film. No need to book.

(Thanks to Emma for sharing.)

Notes

1)There’s a very nice welcoming café with a West Indian flair and bakery along Cann Hall Road,E11 just by clean Londis. The bread is delicious but carries Hoxton prices. Parking is okay too still.

2)Thurs Mar 30th free. 11.30am Last of the three champions from Gillian Lawrence’s art project “Champions” at Hackney Central Library E8 our local Hilary Davis who will tell us through her chat and chosen music at East London Radio in Leytonstone what experiences drive her to support her local community. She will close the art project by being the final guest as down comes the exhibition and she collects her beautiful canvas.

Mary Katherine’s East London Radio’s programme is dedicated to lifting Yourself up to good living and so many champions who deal with very difficult emotive subjects were not invited for a March interview despite my recommendation as project leader. Ah, the year is long yet.

Hilary can be found every other Tuesday at the Mill E17, oft times at The Claremont Project in Islington or enjoying a brunch at Bill’s.

3)I made a Simnel Cake already.

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#51%RememberHer – A cultural return for E13..

london eastern drifts

In my last post here over a month ago (yep, I vow to write more often, but enjoy wandering around posting pics of curiosities in the East on my instagram feed so much more – follow it, follow both!..) I wrote about stumbling upon the artwork of an old colleague while doing a Plaistow history walk at the end of January (that’s it up there, Sian-Kate Mooney’s DARKWAVE II).. Well, the exhibition it’s part of opened this week, and here’s a little piece on it..

Firstly, forgive me – I can’t claim to be anything close to an art critic. But I do love cultural expression, buildings, identity issues, history, general-eye-catching-stuff and more than all these things, the paradise that is Plaistow!..

So, #51%RememberHer is a new exhibition of contemporary art by women of the East End and had it’s official opening on Wednesday evening to celebrate International Women’s Day (March 8th), and public…

View original post 1,183 more words

Issue 9 Up Your Street.

Tues Mar 14th free to view Great art (and bread) at Wynwood-Art-District next to The Bell E17. See John Arthur Hewson’s work and prints by Antonietta Torsiello. Few days left.

In the Whipps Cross Hospital Bridge there are great paintings but by whom?

Thurs Mar 16th free 6.30pm The Mill Coppermill Lane E17 Launch. All welcome. “Memories of Shops and Shopping around St James’ Street.” Created by mo@themill-coppermill.org

Fri Mar 17th free 2-3pm Gants Hill Library. Heritage Tea Time. Part of International Women’s Month. Sounds like fun.

Sat Mar 18th free 1-3pm Big Weed Blitz 1-3pm, in the William Morris Garden Help us banish weeds, so the garden can flourish. This is the launch of our new Saturday Volunteer Gardening (every third Saturday of the month) and part of Waltham Forest Council’s annual Spring Clean event. Join us to improve your health & well-being, feel part of your community and learn about gardening. Find out more: ellie.mortimer@walthamforest.gov.uk 020 8496 2822

Creatives Found.

It was raining nay spitting. The traffic was awful. The buses were packed with church-goers and Tesco shoppers. I was out on an empty stomach. I reached The Mill E17, had my last look at E17 printmakers’ work on the walls on the final day and got myself down to Wynwood Art District at The Bell E17: I’d promised I’d see John Arthur Hewson’s art.
How many art caffs in Walthamstow? Art with omelettes, art with soda bread, art not with common or garden ketchup. Many caffs. That’s why I dislike the turning of St Mary’s into an art, music and performance centre. Let a church be.
And then I went to the Memorial Church in Barking Road, miles away. The church service had finished and the congregation people were tucking into their bean cakes and Fantas. Wanna congregation? Bring out the chicken.
I did go into the exhibition 51%RememberHer in the Tower Gallery in the massive church. I went through a hall door and jumped thinking a couple were at it in the cubby hole. Twas a sculpture of cement and sand and so the exhibition had begun. I climbed up and up and up until vertigo kicked in. I found the inner balcony and saw the chairs where our framed paintings were displayed. Bloomin’ cheek, putting my framed and ready to hang as requested work of art on a chair. Get my money back
So I did all that touring, dropped into Tesco for some reduced couscous and fresh halal beef and relaxed indoors not knowing I was missing Turning Earth a big open day for potters in Argall Avenue Leyton. Leyton. Well plenty of new flats are being built and rich youngsters are moving in to designer boxes and newbies need embellished pots.

Whoever Knew?

Resonance FM’s The News Agents is a chat show. Two artists (one doing her talk programme and one a curator and gallery owner) natter about the big exhibition at the Tower Gallery in Barking Road. I contributed but never knew the brief. When I submitted physically my work after a long bus journey, I was asked by the young MAN if I were an anchor artist. When I asked what that was I knew I’d been told too much.
The exhibition was originally considered for funds as a pop up nudge to the First World War so much of the big art references that. The curator said she wanted to look to the future too so invited any women artist with a connection to the east end to submit a little framed piece. Those bits from what are obviously non anchor artists were put out for display on chairs which when lifted open make natural frames. Hmm.

The chat is all about stunning art from stunning women artists and how the title of the month long festival begs us to think about how women artists are pretty invisible in major galleries. Rebecca Feiner is honest and enthusiastic, energetic and non-stop who thinks about the common people. She likes witty work. She wants her artists to support each other and work together in the future, to share their spaces. Ah, good luck with that.

There was talk of finance and how the artists will receive a more generous payment than they would from most galleries if they sell. The sale prices range from £10-£10k. Imagine. one would need a big Lidl bag to get some of the installations home.
Great stuff Rebecca.

Champions: The Tour

On Thursday I invited Up Your Street seniors some of whom are artists and certainly all have seen many art exhibitions in their lives or so you’d assume plus two champions who’d been my subjects in acrylic and are seniors too. So it was a mainly old girl’s tea party when Eric hobbled in and disappeared after the fruit juice and tour.
Hackney Central Library’s community art space is ridiculous. The space is three trophy display cabinets and two pin board screens. The thing is it’s free, I recently paid to exhibit one A4 painting in a women only show miles away. The work had to be framed and ready to hang and I was given less than two weeks’ notice. I did it though because I was supporting east end women artists who could learn a lesson or two about supporting me. That could be just through sharing a Facebook status photograph and giving me some credit. I thought it was out of order to charge women to exhibit for International Women’s Day especially when the organiser was flippin’ funded. Still, my choice. I did find at the bottom of the email the fee for concessions so pushed in my squids.

The Champions Exhibition tour started with an oil pastels on thick black paper almost a metre square of local activist Claire who rejected my acrylic canvas because I had left out her spectacles which define her. Everyone loved the portrait with her wide and hooded eyes not seen at all when she smiles which is most of the time.
The first acrylic was of beautiful Theodora Cadbury who runs brilliantly Xenia at Hackney Museum, a coming together opportunity for refugee and indigenous women to get English spoken. I was able to promote Xenia from experience totally for I was a founder participant. Part of the pull of going was the outstanding and comfortable museum at Hackney which exists for the community. Take note you others.
Zeb Achonu in her lashings of paint and recently You Tube star at London Contemporary Voices to be checked on their Facebook page was next in line for championess. She in nose studs, and vulnerable huge eyes always in scarlet red lipstick founded MUSEfest, a women only musical experience and festival with Hannah Judson. My guests were open-mouthed as I told them how MUSEfest generated a donation to White Ribbon Alliance for global safe childbirth for every woman.
Hibo Wardere, fierce but approachable, campaigner against Female Genital Mutilation, will one day get her two canvases along with a deserved OBE from Queenie. She too is in the cabinet. She rejected my first canvas as she remarked it was half a picture whereas I wanted to capture her eyes which are sometimes doe’s eyes with thick black eyeliner accentuating them. Behind those balls of black is a heart swimming for women and abused girls.

Mary Fahey had hesitantly (first time she showed doubt) asked me if the woman behind the leaves was supposed to be her. It is. It’s Mary the DJ behind a net curtain, seeing what’s going on but surrounded too by plants, She is a garden prize winner from up in Walthamstow Village. If you get to the exhibition you’ll read why these women are champions.
Rosie Bancroft doesn’t know I painted her after Paul Floyd Blake’s National Prize-winning photograph. She is a teenager in my painting which was originally one of my “At the Swim” collection seen at Hackney and Stratford. Everyone wants that picture. Postcards are available as I put her up for auction.

BN Neu pushed until she got seniors noted and recognised as a group force at Tate Modern. She’s not finished yet. How is she not the old woman who can dye her hair purple? I captured her vulnerability and tenacity. People see a champion.
Ah, my beautiful paintings of Hilary, full of textiles and colour and Hyacinth, our Valentine’s baby enriched in her beauty and African-ness. Both paintings are layers of colour. Both paintings depict quiet modest women who know their crafts and share them. Saluted.
Jessica Brassica, lovingly called because she is of the Green. Jessica Green, lover of life. mover of spirits and champion in the domain of bodily health and wellness through breathing and self-knowledge. She’ll have a yoga class of one and keep a level of excellence for that one person who is as important as the crowd. Her beauty is often unseen behind her hair and glasses. In the exhibition she is rightfully exposed. She is beautiful.

Even in her ugliness knocked into her by abuse, Sonita as a painting is fascinating in the story behind it. Here is a young woman in a stained white wedding dress and veil screaming silently. This is from the character Sonita plays in her “Brides For Sale” daring video. We see the child in the bloodied face. Well done, Sonita Alizadeh.
Marcella has rich tones of brown, African brown, in her face with that tight-lipped smile. The brown is layered on mauve layered on yellow all done in the early morning hours when the repeated How to Paint plum in your mouth TV shows are switched off and the urban foxes come out to disturb security lights in their hunt for stale bread. Behind a charming and warm face is a lioness. Our champion was with us in the viewing line as was Claire.

Amanda, art therapist, stood glossed in golden nail varnish behind the Hackney Library cabinet glass, waiting to gently serve us in the community. She stands watching us as we almost miss her on a smaller frame. We did salute her.

Sylvia was hidden for a while but made it to the champions line-up with her striking hair and features accentuated by a golden eagle eye as she misses nothing and notes everything. She is currently working with BN Neu and I on a project inspired by Tammy Whynot regarding technology access for seniors who can’t.

Mother to many Katrina laughs in the cabinet. We automatically warm to this premier champion who without a second thought bundles her family into a van alongside sleeping bags and torches for refugees wherever and whenever. Since we first heard about Lesvos and Calais in 2015 Katrina was on the move, setting up collection points for refugee aid. It was I who was nervous to ask her to be a painted Champion for I was in awe of her. My contribution was to paint refugee scenes in a collection called “Save Our Souls” which was exhibited in Stratford. Every tenner was sent to Kat.

I was always mindful of seniors’ legs as we walked around and as my guests listened to me. Claire reminded me that I was disadvantaging the disadvantaged when I hadn’t waited for Eric with his stick. Some of us had drunk sherry and eaten sugar so we were quite high. I was high on sharing my art. The security guard came and told us off for laughing and disturbing the six people bent over and studying. Likely. Marcella was typically fuming. I had already introduced myself to the security staff and ignored what was said because teenagers were busy chatting and yowling in other parts of the library which is only quiet on a one hour slot from 9-10am. It’s a market-place otherwise.

On the day before, the real International Women’s Day, Tate Britain’s Soapbox lot of 25 had discussed the lack of visible and celebrated women artists’ work in the museums. With Soapbox,unless you’re at the scene, you’ll never know how it went. I was at Anna Alcock’s women and printing workshop in Walthamstow where we mostly senior women of the white persuasion listened to a rant about the same topic. I was surely at the scene listening to myself. This month besides having two exhibitions about women, I am highlighting modern day women printmakers to balance out so many things, one being the twee view of women as crafters like ole May Morris instead of women as machine operators in a man’s world. I e print makers like Antonietta Torsiello.