As part of my ongoing quest to spend more time working and less time wiping (bums, faces, worktops), I have completed a drawing that will be for sale at a show this weekend. The Drawing Room is an exhibition of works on paper in a unique building – The Old Cycle Club – which is normally a private house but is a beautiful conversion designed by the architects who live there. Most of the artists are based in south London and a local brewery is supporting it (which my husband visits every weekend; ‘I’ll just be 5 minutes’, half an hour later he comes in the door with 12 bottles of beer).
I have drawn the bandstand in the grounds of the Horniman Museum. I normally draw people’s houses by commission, but obviously it’s a bit tricky to make those appeal to a wider audience. Even I might not want one of my drawings of someone else’s house. This is an attempt to generalise the subject matter!
I’m hoping other people spend as much time visiting the Horniman as us. There must be a few – that place is heaving with excitable children and harried parents on rainy days. We often go on Sunday mornings when storytellers take an item from the museum’s collection and use it as the basis for a tale, things like ‘How the lion got his roar’, complete with funny noises and appropriate drama. Our eldest son, S, LOVES it and chuckles through 40 minutes without fail. Meanwhile our youngest son can throw himself in puddles of mud or down a hill in the gardens. Should he decide to carefully relocate gravel from one area to another, it is the perfect moment to take photos of the bandstand and use them as the basis for a drawing. That, my friends, is a rare moment of multitasking and the epitome of work-life meld.
I occasionally have flashbacks at the Horniman because I visited the ‘room’ that the stories are now told in when it was a construction site in 2001. During my degree in architecture we had a series of ‘case studies’ which involved trooping around a building site in steel-toe boots while the architect told us what was going on. My main memory is that we all made hilarious jokes about Horny Men and I didn’t really understand the roof construction.
The catalogue for the show is here. There are some beautiful prints which I am really looking forward to seeing at the private view tonight. If you actually know me, it’s very close to our house so pop in and say hello!
Friday 4th – Sunday 6th April, open 10am – 6pm
The Old Cycle Club, 93 Choumert Road, London, SE15 4AP