"These days, artists have to create their own opportunities"
PUBLISHED: 13:07 22 August 2018
If you've walked past the Camden People's Theatre recently, you might have noticed the striking art exhibition proudly on display.
The work in question is a solo-project called Cross Sections. It has been created by Fiona Grady, and is a piece designed to explore the relationship between interior and exterior spaces in a public setting. Using hand-cut vinyl and pasted screenprints, Fiona worked on the display throughout Tuesday August 14, and her work is to remain on view until Sunday September 9.
This is the third and final exhibition of the summer curated by Glass Cloud Gallery, a project which gives emerging artists a boost as they bid to showcase their talents to larger audiences.
“These days, artists have to create their own opportunities,” says Hannah Luxton, who founded Glass Cloud Gallery five years ago.
“The goal is to give emerging artists access to the public, and it’s a great platform for them to experiment. The other side of the project – and one that I wasn’t expecting to be so rewarding – was that it creates new experiences for the general public who are walking past.
“It’s a great feeling to give opportunities to artists in a city where it can be hard to secure exhibition work.”
Hannah’s project began with an 18-month residency in the office windows of a Tooley Street construction company, and has since grown to collaborate with other like-minded businesses across London.
Glass Cloud Gallery perhaps thrives the most at Camden People’s Theatre, where it has a yearly residency.
Hannah adds: “Our spot in Camden is so good – you can get super close to it but also see it from across the street.
“The installations do something different when you see them far away. Fiona went for a bright and vibrant display, as she wanted to play with the fact that it’s a busy space, but make it transient as well to get people’s attention.”
This year’s partnership with the theatre on Hampstead Road was funded by the Arts Council, which gave Hannah the chance to exhibit three upcoming artists from London.
Floored by Erin Hughes ran across much of July, before Gary Colclough’s The Place We’re In took over for a two-week stint in August.
Glass Cloud Gallery will reflect on one of its most rewarding summers’ to date with another free event at Camden People’s Theatre this Friday. Chaired by Dateagle Art’s Vanessa Murrell, a panel of speakers will speak at this relaxed hour-long meeting, designed to address some of the key challenges facing artists at the moment.
Hannah adds: “With Glass Cloud Gallery, we’re there, we put the work up, then we disappear. I’m hoping to get local people to come along so we can hear what art means to them.
“The event is an opportunity for people who are interested in art – but maybe don’t actively engage with it – to have their say. It’s also for other art practitioners who also run projects. It’s a chance for them to talk about why we feel art in the public realm is important.
“Topics we’ll cover will include funding, the practicalities of making these projects work and people looking for advice. But mainly it’s a celebration of people that are working on art in the public realm: how can we do it better, and how can we do it more?
“We want to bring art into the public realm, rather than it being kept behind closed doors.”
Cross Sections is on display at Camden People’s Theatre now until Sunday September 9. Tomorrow (August 24), Glass Cloud Gallery will host a free panel discussion between 7 and 8pm.