Bermondsey Project has just announced the inaugural exhibition of Art in Crisis – a hotbed of emerging talent demonstrating the fervent creativity and talent that exists amongst their members. This major exhibition will be held in July as part of the ‘Art in Crisis’ festival – a national visual and performing arts event championing the extraordinary talent of people who are homeless, who have experienced homelessness and who are at risk of homelessness.
Leslie Morphy, chief executive of Crisis explains: “We know from many years’ experience how important art can be in helping people take their first steps out of homelessness. Picking up a paintbrush, or creating a sculpture can be a rare chance for self-expression, to get involved in a social activity and begin rebuilding confidence shattered by the awful experience of homelessness. “It is clear, from walking round one of our art rooms that some outstanding art is being created by our clients day in, day out. Art in Crisis is our invitation to the public to come and share some of this extraordinary work and discover the great art that is helping people through crisis every day.”
This exhibition will showcase Bermondsey Project as a major creative hub for Crisis that houses an active Crisis Skylight centre and is the most comprehensive exhibition of Crisis members work to date.
A number of elements make up this exhibition including: ‘Identity and Representation’. This will include pieces from the Crisis Portraiture workshops in partnership with The Royal Academy of Arts. Crisis members visited the gallery for an artist led tour of the George Bellows exhibition and then over a two month period worked alongside artists from The Royal Academy to create a series of portraits, using different mediums.
Also included in ‘Identify and Representation’ will be photography created in partnership with the University of South Wales photography department. Participants in these workshops were encouraged to get out and explore local communities near our Skylight centres. The exhibition will display portraits of the people who make up International Road.
A little known aspect of Crisis work is the valuable work that we do with ex prisoners – to help them avoid homelessness and re-offending through job coaching, café training and more recently providing access to studio spaces and art courses for those with creative talent. ‘Inside Out’ is a selection of work recently produced in some of London’s prisons, including Pentonville, Thameside and Wormwood Scrubs.
Meanwhile the main gallery space is given over to some of the best painting, printmaking and Sculpture produced by our member artists including those who use the art rooms at Skylight London and those in classes and with supported studios here at the Bermondsey Project.
Crisis is the national charity for single homeless people. We are dedicated to ending homelessness by delivering life-changing services and campaigning for change. Our innovative education, employment, housing and well-being services address individual needs and help people to transform their lives. We are determined campaigners, working to prevent people from becoming homeless and advocating solutions informed by research and our direct experience. We have ambitious plans for the future and are committed to help more people in more places across the UK. We know we won’t end homelessness overnight or on our own. But we take a lead, collaborate with others and, together, make change happen.