Thursday, 25 August 2011

Guest post: Paint your love all over my world

Shepherd's Bush has some exciting things to look forward to and OpenDoors is one of these. For the last few months local residents Tom and Katy have been working hard on a concept which aims to make art accessible and relevant to local people by hosting pop up art galleries in local homes. The art which will be on show will be by local artists inspired by the local area including what local people think about their local area. Katy has kindly written this guest post to tell you more and invite you to join in.

At the end of next month W12 will play host the first OpenDoors exhibition. We hope that by curating a selection of work that is both inspired by and relevant to the people living in the area, it might encourage people of all walks of life to walk through our doors and become interested by the art they see on the walls. 

Over the past two months artists have been producing work about W12 and the people who live there. Lurking in Shepherds Bush Library and sifting through online articles we gathered an amazing variety of stories that became the digital scrapbook. This has effectively become the artists’ brief for exhibition W12.

Information about Shepherds Bush can be traced back as far as the Romans. Goldhawk Road was built by Roman legions as an access route to the West of England. A 17th century historian records a Roman Sword being found ten feet below the ground. Shepherds Bush as its namesake suggests was a rural suburb of London, the last place shepherds could graze their fattened sheep before they were sold at Smithfield market. 

Much of our focus was on industry and buildings that have become iconic of Shepherds Bush; Wormwood Scrubs Prison, Lime Grove Studios, White City Stadium and Shepherds Bush Empire. The cultural history that surrounds these buildings is astounding and we are only scratching the surface. The Shepherds Bush Empire is the home of the ground breaking Custard Pie in the Face joke. Lime Grove Studios was where Prime Minister Anthony Eden broadcast to the nation that we were at war with Egypt. Finally completed in 1891 Wormwood Scrubs prison was built over 17 years using 35 million bricks. Whilst White City played host to the world in both the 1908 Olympic Games and two International Exhibitions.

Using art we hope to encourage an understanding of our heritage, instilling a sense of pride & respect back into London Boroughs. Please email us with your stories of Shepherds Bush and

I strongly recommend you spend some time looking at OpenDoors website and in particular think 
 about giving Tom & Katy your opinions about W12. (I like how they make that W12 red and bold.)

You can also see some of the local artists' work which I've featured on Bird in the Bush previously 
but they've since updated and here are a few more I like.

by Faud Ali

by Joe Cruz

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