8 Artist-Run Galleries / Project Spaces Breaking New Ground in London
3:30 PM15:30

8 Artist-Run Galleries / Project Spaces Breaking New Ground in London

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Located on the ground floor of esteemed British-Nigerian artist Yinka Shonibare’s warehouse studio alongside Regent’s Canal, Guest Projects offers artists of any discipline the freedom of a free project space for a one-month residency. Run by Shonibare’s studio, in collaboration with Imogen Wright, the space’s coordinator, it’s situated by the hip Broadway Market in Hackney. Conceived by Shonibare in 2009, Guest Projects provides young artists with the opportunity to create and showcase their work, without the financial pressures that often come with producing and exhibiting new work. Time and space are both essential to creative production, yet are often hard to come by. Shonibare’s experiences as a young artist saw him learn this firsthand and inspired him to set up the program.


Laura Purseglove: What inspired the opening of this project space?

Imogen Wright: Yinka opened the space as he felt that in his early years as a practicing artist there were far more available and affordable spaces in London for a young artist to exhibit. Today, with the increasingly high prices for property and renting in London, it has become very hard and in some cases impossible for young artists to exhibit their artwork.


LP: Can you tell us a bit about the program?

IW: Between March and May each year, Guest Projects advertises open submissions for the following year, for artists of any discipline to submit a proposal to use the space for one month. We only accept group shows/projects—no solo shows.

After the deadline, Yinka, together with a panel of artists, scores each submitted application. The top scoring projects across the board are then chosen and offered a one month residency for the following year. We receive a huge range of applications each year, ranging from performance artists, dance groups, music groups, theater groups, visual arts, curatorial projects, and charities.

In the Guest Projects space we also run a bi-monthly supper club, inspired by renowned artists or artist movements, called The Artist Dining Room.


LP: In your opinion, what makes a gallery successful?

IW: Yinka believes that the success of a project space is in offering the artists a platform to fail—to experiment. The project space detaches itself from the pressures associated with the model of a commercial galley: sales.

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to Oct 2


Art Licks Weekend: 30 September - 2 October 2016

Guest Projects will be taking part in this years Art Licks Weekend, showcasing The Uncollective with Nolo: Curating the Body.

The Art Licks Weekend is a three-day festival where artist-run projects, curatorial collectives and young galleries across the city open up their spaces for the public, with free events and exhibitions of young artists’ work.

The festival presents the work of early career artists and collectives who are rethinking how art can be seen and experienced. This unique situation provides a fantastic opportunity for you to see the new work of artists in exceptional circumstances that is both fun and challenging.

This year sees 62 spaces taking part, showing the work of over 200 artists collectively. View the full festival programme: www.artlicksweekend.com

Art Licks Weekend is funded by Arts Council England & the Art Licks Weekend 2016 Patrons


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Art and Music Fundraiser for Médecins Sans Frontières with special guest DJ Jarvis Cocker
to Feb 28

Art and Music Fundraiser for Médecins Sans Frontières with special guest DJ Jarvis Cocker

Charity Event Saturday 27th February 2016 - 7.30 till late                                     Celebrity DJs Jarvis Cocker, Candida Doyle (Pulp), Corinne Drewery (Swing Out Sister) & Bishi. Live Music from Sukie Smith & Sarah Gill (Madam), Kitty Finer and Mattie Barclay. Canapés and drinks.

This art and music fundraising event is for Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).  Yinka Shonibare MBE has kindly given the use of his project space at his London Fields Studio on Saturday 27th February 2016.  Your support would greatly add to this exclusive event and help raise money and awareness for this exceptional charity.

It will be a small ticketed event with limited capacity for 110 people. Everyone who buys a ticket (with all proceeds going to Médecins Sans Frontières) will receive a prize - a few lucky people will receive small artworks by leading artists such as Phillip AllenMartino GamperAnne HardyAnish Kapoor (Turner prize winner 1991), Goshka Macuga (Turner Prize nominee 2005), Paul Noble (Turner Prize nominee 2012), Saskia Olde Wolbers  (Beck’s Futures winner 2005), Elizabeth Price (Turner Prize winner 2012) , Michael Raedecker (Turner Prize nominee 2000), Yinka Shonibare MBE (Turner Prize nominee 2004) , Bob and Roberta SmithGeorgina Starr, Gavin TurkFrancis UpritchardGary Webb and many more (see website for full details of participating artists). 

In addition to the wonderful prizes, there will be a guest speaker Stefanie Wittman, a doctor from Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) giving a short introduction about this amazing charity.

Everyone who purchases a ticket will receive a raffle prize (prizes ranging from an artwork - around 50 artworks are available) to a yoga lesson for three people, a visit to the Courtauld Institute with a personal talk by Sophie Siem, an arm knitting lesson complete with wool, concert tickets, Aesop selection, Jem Finer studio visit, Dinner for Two at a Hix restaurant, all the prizes so far have been kindly donated by friends and their contacts who are sharing their time and skills to help. 

For more information please contact Deborah Rigby on email address: artandmusic4msf@gmail.com

Buy your ticket here.


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Artist Talk: Yinka Shonibare MBE on Becoming an Artist | 10th February 2016
5:00 PM17:00

Artist Talk: Yinka Shonibare MBE on Becoming an Artist | 10th February 2016

Yinka Shonibare MBE will be in conversation with Tony Heaton OBE, CEO of Shape Arts, to discuss his journey as an artist.  

FREE tickets available on Eventbrite. Book Now.

From the early days of his career to his work with Shape Arts in the 90’s, Yinka will share his meteoric rise to becoming an internationally renowned artist. The talk will be an insightful look into how Yinka became the artist he is today and his concerns for the up and coming artists of tomorrow.

This event is part of a series of Shape Arts 40th Anniversary Celebrations. 

Photo ©Royal Academy of Arts, London; photographer Marcus Leith.

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My Life | The Shape Open 2016 Private View | 4 February 2016
to Feb 5

My Life | The Shape Open 2016 Private View | 4 February 2016

Preview: 4 Feb 2016; 6pm-9pm

This year, the ground-breaking annual Shape Open exhibition will be at Guest Projects space, hosted by Shape Open Patron Yinka Shonibare MBE.

The Shape Open 2016 theme ‘My Life’ encouraged both disabled and non-disabled artists to creatively express life through the lens of disability.                                                            

Using an exciting range of mediums such as blood, machinery and modified everyday objects to express their ideas, the artists drew on memory, nostalgia and processes of internal reflection to explore the complexity of this years’ theme.

The responses are serious-minded, satirical, and often ambiguous, requiring the viewer to consider the different aspects of disability and to challenge the way disability is perceived.

The final artworks were carefully selected for the exhibition by a panel of judges including Yinka Shonibare MBE, Carly Jayne – Shape Open Prize Winner 2014, and from Shape Arts, Tony Heaton OBE and Ben Fredericks (video/audio only).

This is one of a series of events marking Shape’s 40th anniversary celebrations.  To support our campaign to promote inclusion in the arts, go to: www.shapearts.org.uk/art-without-barriers

The exhibition is open: 5 Feb - 21 Feb 2016; Thursday - Saturday 12pm - 5pm.

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