We're proud to take part in this year's fourth Catford Arts Trail and delighted to show you stunning photography work by Simon Farnhell.
The Catford Arts Trail does a fantastic job of showcasing the wealth of local talent and also demonstrates how much Art brings people together.
In fact it's the Arts Trail which inspired us to use our space to support and exhibit local artists and we've never looked back!.
We're very excited to be exhibiting's stunning drawings and terrariums by two local artists, Alex Birtwistle and Nancy Ellis, from the 10 October. Please come along and support them on their opening night!
Nancy and Alex were introduced by Nancy’s sister when she realised that they lived on the same street in Crofton Park.
Nancy shamelessly stole Alex as her friend and in 2007 they worked together to set up the first of many ‘Big Lunch’ street parties that have gone on to create a beautiful community vibe in SE4.
Nancy studied at Camberwell college of Arts, graduating in ’99, and has worked exclusively in the field of animation and illustration ever since.
Drawing children and the art of storytelling have remained her biggest passion, growing up with beloved books like ‘Dogger’ by Shirley Hughes, where inspiration was found very early on.
Over the years, Nancy began to develop a style for illustrating the children in her family and it was through sharing this work with friends, that the concept for Heavens to Betsy! was born.
Nancy, launched her small business Heavens to Betsy! to fit around being mum to her two boys. The name came about after a funny moment at a Burns night party with friends and just sort of stuck!
The idea behind the illustrations is to capture the fleeting moments of childhood and recreate them in a vintage storybook style.
As well as illustrating children, Nancy loves to draw local businesses and has recently completed a celebratory Landmarks of Lewisham artwork, which features one landmark from each ward in the borough, all jumbled together and stacked on top of each other. Test your local knowledge by seeing how many you can recognise!
Alex’s love for growing things began as a toddler on her mother’s allotment in Somerset with the combined joy of eating raw broccoli and playing with the local teenage punks on the nearby swings. Alex is currently studying a Level 2 RHS diploma in horticultural principles and practice. The ambition is to combine her 3 day-a-week job-share as a straight-laced civil servant with a double shot of plant based creativity.
Terrariums, or bottle gardens, combine the unpredictability of containing Mother Nature within a tiny controlled ecosystem and watching the battle for equilibrium unfold.
Alex fell in love with terrarium making when she attended a short workshop in London last year.
Some months later, about to throw a recently emptied gin bottle in the recycling bin, Alex noticed it looked remarkably like the terrarium she had made, and subsequently watch fail, and was intrigued by the challenge of rebuilding a new terrarium and keeping it happy.
The idea for making terrariums in recycled drinking vessels had been sown and a few months later, Natured Contained was created.
Alex uses Bottle Bar and Shop bottles for modern clean lines and a variety of shapes, sizes and unique vessels for commissions.
Look out for upcoming workshops to get a bottle garden of your own - dates TBA!
Simon's work is almost exclusively photographic, sometimes with other artworks and textures added into the final mix that lead to the finished pictures.
He uses photographs as "they give a certain realistic base to his pictures".
All these collected images go into Photoshop where he combines and manipulates them before printing them out as limited edition giclée prints on archival watercolour paper.
Most of his present work is inspired by or features sites around his South London home, with an emphasis on the parks and public spaces.
The landscapes of south east London and elsewhere, and reflections on events past and present, form the main themes of Olivia's work.
Her work is figurative and she often focuses on the architectural and structural forms of the city around her, particularly industrial buildings, blocks of flats, streets and structures of all kinds – scenes of everyday life.
Olivia's paintings emerge through on- and off-site sketchbook drawings and paintings, still and moving digital images collected on her iPhone. Sketches use charcoal, ink, acrylic, watercolour or pastels.
She works mostly on paper – using mainly acrylic, gouache, ink, and charcoal. Within individual paintings or series she tends to use a narrow palette, drawing on a wide range of tools and techniques to develop textures and layers.
A lecturer in primary education, Jane (LinoPrintDesign) took up lino printing several years ago with a desire to do something creative outside of work.
Under the guidance of artist Judith Robertson, Jane learnt the basics of relief printing. Experimenting with different papers, inks and printing methods,
she continues to explore the medium of lino printing. She has enjoyed being able to share her work with the local community at the Catford Arts Trail over the past few years.
A teacher at heart, she regularly runs printing workshops locally and derives as much pleasure from others enjoyment of the process as from printing herself.
Jane focuses on using a reduction printing method to create multi-coloured or shaded prints.
Printing several times using the same piece of lino, layers of colour are added in stages, cutting away sections of the lino and printing in turn.
This process means that every print is unique and limited in edition. She enjoys producing affordable prints of the local area for local people.
As Catford is going through a period of significant development, a new series of prints are currently in the making which aim to tell the story of Catford through its iconic buildings, past and present.
Some of these will be on display, along with prints of the wider area.
Kate has been painting for 12 years and continues to learn. She has recently attended courses at City Lit, the St Ives School of Painting and the London Art Academy, among others.
While studying acrylic and oil painting, she discovered inks as an alternate medium which allowed a significant degree of freedom in working styles.
She continues to experiment with different media, substrates and finishes.
Kate is particularly interested in the interplay of light and contrasting edges, from blurred to sharp, in her work. Each piece aims to emulate both the beauty and feeling that both micro and macro views of the world give rise to – from a cell nucleus to a supernova.
She enjoys the challenge inks present in mastering the unpredictable and sees inks as an ideal medium to express mood and atmosphere.
Luke Agbaimoni is a photographer and designer based in Catford, London.
He has an arts background with a degree in graphic design. However his photography was self-taught after he graduated.
He has a special love for dusk and night photography, enjoying the technical challenge of capturing low light images.
As his life changed, and less time was available to capture the early mornings and late nights, he focused more on his daily commute.
This new direction gave birth to the tube mapper London project and new opportunities and techniques.
The Underground is the backbone of the city of London, a part of our identity. It’s a network of shared experiences and visual memories.
The tube mapper project captures moments of subconscious recognition and overlooked interests, showcasing images that can be seen at every London tube station.