Royal Court’s Theatre Local is having a very successful second season at the Bussey building. It is wonderful that the building and the Copeland site, saved from demolition by Peckham Vision’s campaign, are now the home to so many creative activities and enterprises – theatre, art, music, dance, studios, workshops, community meetings and more – with further potential. The Copeland Cultural Quarter, now organically materialising, must be nurtured and not destroyed by property development plans. This is a key for the town centre future. Read more…
The AJ article “…juxtaposes a top-down development in Elephant and Castle with ground-up localism in Peckham”. It says: Localism can, and does, improve the quality of the built environment by enabling professional skills and community ideas to coalesce. For example, Peckham Vision, a consortium of residents, artists, businesses and The Peckham Society, campaigns for a renewed Peckham town centre. The consortium is an important force for change… Read More
byÂ LAUREN HOUSSIN formerly onÂ laurenetcaetera.blogspot.comÂ 22 December 2009
From New York’s Meatpacking district to Berlin’s Mitte or Paris’ Montmartre, dirty corners of cities all face the same destiny: they are pioneered by young artists, and later colonized by the trendy bourgeoisie. The rents soar, and the starving bohemia has yet to migrate again.Â Take the case of London. After Ladbroke Grove in the 1970s and Camden in the 1980s, the East End was conquered in the late 90s. By the early noughties, Brick Lane, Shoreditch, even Dalston were out of price. Artists soon decided to move south of the river, to Peckham. Known to most people for its gang warfare and knife crime rates rather than its culture, Peckham is home to a burgeoning art scene. Because of its empty industrial spaces and proximity to art schools, the bloody district is now an area of choice for young up and coming artists.
“An advantage of working as an artist in Peckham is that there is an audience for art in the area,” said 26-year-old Bobby Dowler, whose paintings are currently showcased at the Hannah Barry Gallery, one of the great pioneers of the area’s scene and one of the most dynamic new art galleries in Britain. “There’s an extremely good dialogue between people,” the young artist added, “and a seriousness about what they’re doing, a kind of belief that it’s important.”
Located in a former cricket bat factory at the end of an industrial road populated by factories, the Hannah Barry Gallery was invited at this year’s Venice Biennale to stage the first Peckham Pavilion. Ms. Barry founded her eponymous gallery in 2008 with Sven MÃ¼ndner, and works with 32 artists, all aged between 21 and 35. Whether they are showing paintings, installations or photographies, their aim is to always show the work in-depth, in order to best represent the progress of the artist.
“Peckham is the land of freedom and opportunity,” said Ms. Barry. A hallmark of the area’s art scene is its large-scale and high-reaching projects: the spaces available can accommodate shows and works that could not take place in typical West End or East End galleries.
“Everbody has their own possibilities,” she explained, “and for us the space that we have here allowed us to do the shows that we wanted to do. It would have been a different price in the West End, and perhaps not the kind of price that a young gallery can afford. Being in Peckham has enabled us to do things on a scale that we wouldn’t have been able to do over there.”
Although East London is an established part of the city’s gallery circuit and houses the highest population of artists in Europe, it is no longer what it used to be. Its charm and character seem to be lost since property developers have taken advantage of its popularity. As rents have rocketed, many younger artists have in fact headed south of the river in areas like Peckham, where rents are more affordable.
Situated inbetween two of London’s leading art colleges, Goldsmiths School of Arts and Camberwell College, plenty of young, artistic and imaginative people are challenging the negative stereotype that is still all too-often applied to the area. “A lot of students live in the area and continue living in the area after they graduate. I have done so and I graduated in 1998,” said Emily Druiff, Director of the arts initiative Peckham Space.
Through annual commissions, workshops and public events, Peckham Space supports art practice that forges sustainable links between the arts and the local community in south east London, and aims to provide professional development opportunities for artists. The organisation is also plans to open an art venue in a raw space in Spring 2010, showcasing artworks made in conjunction with and in response to the locals of Peckham.
Peckham is home to 25,000 people from all over the world, and has the highest proportion of people born elsewhere compared to the rest of Southwark. One of the best metaphors of Peckham is the Bussey building, that from the outside looks like a run-down factory in a dodgy back alley. But penetrating the almost historic monument -it was built in the early 20th century- and looking closer, it is occupied by an aggregate of over 60 artists, faith groups, exhibition spacesÂ and small businesses, all existing and working happily alongside each other.
Turner Prize winner Antony Gormley and his fellow Royal Academician Tom Phillips, who both have their studios in Peckham, decided a few years ago with a clutch of others to do an artistic makeover of the run-down neighbourhood’s landscape. With this street art initiative, residents now enjoy some of the most original street murals, barcode-patterned pavements in the city and twisted or heart-shaped lampposts by the fashion designer Zandra Rhodes.
Just a step out of Peckham Rye station is a wooden sculpture of a phoenix with splatters of paint on it. According to legend, the Phoenix is reduced to ashes at the end of its life, from which a new, young phoenix is reborn to live again. Using the metaphor of destruction and creation, the sculpture aims to communicate a message of rebirth among the community and the role played by the young art scene in this rejuvenation.
Most people will hear the word ”Peckham” and they will just picture graffiti, dirty pavements and urinated phone boxes. But aside from the drama that the South London area evokes, a few pioneers have managed to raise up the profile and status of the place for everyone, bringing new audiences to the area, creating people of different ages and backgrounds mixing in the same place and causing the area to now easily betray people’s expectations.
How Hannah Barry has managed to take a group of unknown young artists from a Peckham squat to a Venice pavilion in just three years.
It was always likely that British art would recover from its post-YBA slump in a manner as radically refreshing, thrilling, and unforeseen as the arrival of Hirst, Emin, et al. had been at the beginning of the 1990s. But few could have predicted that the revolution would start in Peckham.Change is afoot in this corner of London, specifically behind the anonymous-looking doors of a particular warehouse in an industrial estate. Those doors lead to the Hannah Barry Gallery, one of the most dynamic new art galleries in Britain and home to some of the best young talent in the country.Â Read more
On 26th November the Peckham Multiplex showed a one hour film called â€˜Consume Peckhamâ€™, which consisted of 18 short films, each focusing on a different business based in Peckham town centre. The work of film students from Chelsea, the film wove together a tapestry showing the many sides to Peckhamâ€™s Rye Lane, and beyond. Its aim was to show the link between cultures and commercialism. There was a great turnout – the cinema was full – and a terrific buzz, to see the collection of short student films about some of the businesses in the town centre.
It was a very good show from first year students. And it was recognisably the place we know!Â It showed the people of Peckham in a true light, and that the town centre does have a lot of life in it in its various forms, though with lots of space for improvement. For those there, many really interested in the revitalization of the town centre using all our assets â€“ people, buildings and commerce â€“ it will have stimulated further thoughts on how to do this and about the nature of thecommercial dynamic, and its potential. Click here for more reports. http://www.laurieeggleston.org/2009/11/consume-peckham-culture-commercialism.htmlÂ Â and hereÂ http://helengraves.co.uk/2009/11/ozzies-cafe-peckham/
There have been a number of requests for another showing and the producers are looking into that. So if you couldn’t make it there may be another chance. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you want to join the mailing list.
Special Report: Contemporary Art New York TimesÂ By Alice Pfeiffer: October 14, 2009
Peckham, a run-down district of London, south of the Thames, is said to have the capitalâ€™s highest concentration of knife crime, hairdressers and gospel churches.
Now, add up-and-coming artists: in easy reach of some of the capitalâ€™s leading art schools, the areaâ€™s low prices and vast, empty industrial spaces are attracting experimental avant-garde collectives, studios and galleries â€” a countercultural challenge to the established North-of-the-river world of the Frieze art fair and the gentrified East End.
â€œPeckham is the land of the free. Itâ€™s like a blank canvas,â€ said Hannah Barry, an enterprising 26-year-old who founded her eponymous gallery last year in a warehouse of a former cricket bat factory.Â At the end of an industrial road populated by factories and faith groups, Ms. Barry and her co-director Sven MÃ¼ndner, 31 â€” both graduates of Cambridge â€” put on 15 to 20 shows a year, showcasing young emerging artists. Ms. Barry and Mr. MÃ¼ndner have also put on an annual sculpture show since 2006, on the roof of an abandoned parking garage nearby. â€œWe felt there was room for an ambitious sculpture park in London,â€ Ms. Barry said. In June, she and Mr. MÃ¼ndner took Peckham to a global audience, with a show, the â€œPeckham Pavilion,â€ on the fringes of the Venice Biennale.Â read more …
The summer with Frankâ€™s CafÃ© & Campari Bar with its fabulous views from central Peckham comes to an end on 26th September 2009. Letâ€™s hope the huge success encourages Frank to start a permanent cafÃ© in Peckham. In the meantime, see these splendid views by Nick WoodfordÂ and a few of the many photos and comments over the summer.
From Evening Standard By Tim Burrows 20.08.09
When Tracey Emin and Sarah Lucas opened The Shop in 1993 in what is now Redchurch Street in E2, they probably didn’t realise that they were leading the cultural shift that would hit its peak in 2000 with the arrival of Jay Jopling‘s Hoxton Square gallery and result in a decade of the East End’s dominance over art, music, fashion and all things trendy. But 10 years is long enough and a Peckham collective of artists, writers and musicians called Off Modern think it’s time to challenge that monopoly… … the current focal point of the Peckham scene is not a shop, but a cafÃ©. Behind a defunct Woolworths, on top of a neglected 10-storey car park and multiplex set back from the main drag of Rye Lane, is Frank’s CafÃ© and Campari Bar. Designed by Paloma Gormley (daughter of Antony) and Lettice Drake, the visitor-friendly pop-up cafÃ©-bar is actually one of the exhibits in Hannah Barry Gallery’s Bold Tendencies III show.Â Read more http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/arts/article-23734817-details/Peckham+challenging+Hoxton+for+art/article.do
From blog: http://www.intoxicatingprose.com/2009/08/on-site-parking.html
an enchanting evening
On one of the wettest evenings outside a rainforest, I had come to â€˜Bold Tendencies’, the third summer showcase from the local but far-reaching, â€˜Hannah Barry’ gallery. Through sculptures, lighting and curious sounds, the otherwise derelict top tiers of a Peckham car park have been transformed into polished decay and dreamy decadence.
Architecture graduates, Lettice Drake and Paloma Gormley (daughter of Anthony Gormley OBE) took two months to build the star of the show. For the first time in the short history of this annual exhibition, the result is an amusingly titled pop-up restaurant, â€˜Frank’s CafÃ© and Campari Bar’. Sturdy but tactile, its timber counter and communal tables are tinted in the cochineal tones of the famous bitters by a tarpaulin awning. Stretching over and under the tenth floor deck, securing straps were put to the test by a downpour so torrential that London’s landmarks melted into the mist. Armed with hope and broom-handles, dedicated staff prodded away the most threatening bulges pooling above us.
“…a creative experiment in which artists and audience will simultaneously engage in a form of social interaction based on game theory… Alongside a collection of site specific works, artists and performers will facilitate altered versions of familiar social situations and games in which the audience is invited to participate…”