My studio is a little out of the way. East London, Stratford city, not the part that tourists or hipsters go. The part next to the court, the rehab, the beauty shops, the children’s centre and the empty sushi café that’s certainly a front.
You will see the impact of a decade of austerity cuts, my friend that dances to his own tune by the benches, the lady that sings gospel that we are all blessed to hear. The shitty drummer, that never seems to get better, the kindness of people, just getting by with getting by.
I’ve only recently got windows into the sky. Gargoyles top the building. Rumour has it, it was a TB hospital after the war. It’s one of the last few ‘affordable’ art studios left in the city. That’s changing quick, rent hikes disguised as increased energy costs.
It has no heat.
There are no lifts.
It’s my sanctuary.
It’s where I processed all the hospital with the bubs.
The passing of friends & family.
It’s where I learned to paint.
Where I learned to funnel my rage, into a calmness to face the world.
It’s one of the few places, I don’t question whether I am an artist or not. Or if Im good enough, or if i should keep going.
It’s what became my focus when I thought my existence had ended. When the mind barely returned with body broken it was part of the chalice of meaning.
Looking after bubs, making art.
Gone were any other goals or gods.
ART MADE IN THE BELY OF A WHALE
Saturday, October 8th, 2022
Essex House, Stratford
375 High street, E15 4QZ