Saturday, 25 June 2011


Edward Lucie-Smith speaking; Margaret Mytton
to his left

From the left: Leslie Morphy (CEO Crisis), Marcel Baetig (CEO Bow Arts),
ELS, MM, and Mick Bateman (Manager of the Project).
Yesterday afternoon I travelled down to London with Margaret Mytton to the opening of the Bermondsey Project Space. For us, this development has grown from Edward-Lucie Smith's involvement in Derek Smith's film. ELS mentioning the Bermondsey project and suggesting it as a gallery space in which to show Dave Pearson's work. Derek joined us at the opening, travelling from his house in Hackney.

The Project is a new initiative; a very exciting coming together of CRISIS (the charity for the homeless), Bow Artists' studios, and the vision of Edward Lucie-Smith. In fact quite a visionary project on all fronts, because it must have taken an imaginative leap for the charity to see the potential for artist's studios, and a gallery space, to become a building block in creating opportunities for homeless young people. 

So what we saw was a brand new gallery on the ground floor of a London version of a mill building; and on the 3rd and 4th floors at least 60 artists' studios - collectively part of the Bow Arts group. The gallery was an exhuberant space, with good light, good acoustic, and with a great presence - one large and characterful space, with smaller offshoot rooms and wide corridors - a perfect place to show paintings.

We talked with ELS, who had clearly already given the idea of an exhibition of Dave's work some serious thought; as he showed us around he told us how he imagined we might use parts of the space. We also began to look at the periods available to us - this will be organised with Mick Bateman, who manages the new space and is an artist himself, and will be at some point next year. The idea of the show is thrilling, and there's every reason to think this space could develop under the management of a very dedicated, ambitious and imaginative team, into one of London's most exciting new galleries. The perfect place to show some of Dave Pearson's large paintings.

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