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The X Factor 2015 Live Tour - extra dates added

Event preview

DUE to demand, four extra dates have been added to The X Factor 2015 Live Tour:

Thursday, February 19 – Bournemouth International Centre
Tuesday, March 10, Cardiff Motorpoint Arena
Tuesday, March 17 – Brighton Centre
Saturday, March 21 – London The O2 – Matinee show with doors opening at 12:30pm.

Tickets for the extra dates go onsale Friday, October 24 at 9am (all other shows onsale now).

Previously Posted: You’ve taken the journey with them from the room to the arena, sat on the edge of your sofa during the dramatic six-seat challenge at bootcamp, travelled to judges’ houses and will be tuning in to the studio shows; now is your chance to see The X Factor live.

Kicking off on February 13, 2015, in Belfast, The X Factor 2015 Live Tour is a country wide arena tour which will travel to Aberdeen, Bournemouth, Birmingham, Brighton, Cardiff, Dublin, Glasgow, Leeds, Liverpool, London, Manchester, Newcastle, Nottingham and Sheffield with contestants performing classic songs and viewers’ favourites from the TV series.

Attended by over three million people, The X Factor Live Tour has been one of the most successful annual arena tours in the UK for the past ten years. Tickets go on sale Friday, October 10 at 9am – so don’t miss the opportunity to catch this year’s stars live in an arena near you.



Friday, February 13 – Belfast Odyssey Arena
Sunday, February 15 – 3 Arena Dublin
Wednesday, February 18 – Bournemouth BIC
Friday, February 20 – Manchester Arena
Sunday, February 22 – Nottingham Capital FM Arena
Thursday, February 26 – Newcastle Metro Arena
Friday, February 27 – Glasgow The SSE Hydro


Sunday, March 1 – Aberdeen GE Arena (AECC)
Thursday, March 5 – Sheffield Motorpoint Arena
Saturday, March 7 – Leeds First Direct Arena
Sunday, March 8 – Liverpool Echo Arena
Monday, March 9 – Cardiff Motorpoint Arena
Thursday, March 12 – London The SSE Arena, Wembley
Saturday, March 14 – Birmingham LG Arena
Monday, March 16 – Brighton Centre
Friday, March 20 – London The O2

Tickets: from £19.50 (subject to booking fee).

Tickets including limited availability Family Tickets (4 tickets maximum 2 adults) are available from the venue box offices, select ticket agents and online at or Alternatively, call 0844 811 0051 or 0844 826 2826.


Belfast: 0844 277 4455 or online at and Dublin: 0818 719 300 or online at

Fake Films and a Few Frames More - IMT Gallery

Exhibition preview

FAKE Films and a Few Frames More, an exhibition by the artist Laura Pawela of major video works never before seen in the UK, will be on display at IMT Gallery from November 21 to November 23, 2014.

The exhibition will include important early works from Untitled/Friedrich (2008) and Sugar (2009) through to more recent works such as a new single-screen version of her powerful video installation Songs of Insatiability (2011).

Also included will be Past Present Continuous (2010), a meditation on future of ruins of half-built follies in European cities exhibited as part of her solo exhibition at Propaganda Gallery, Warsaw.

Pawela recently exhibited in You Cannot Step into the Same River Twice at the Pump House Gallery, Battersea, Crimestory at the Centre of Contemporary Art, Toruń, and in Manchester Contemporary 2013.

Last year she was awarded the prestigious Silesian Voivodeship Artistic Award for achievements in the field of the visual art. She is currently working on the mockumentary Pink Horizon, with Tomasz Kolankiewicz, with support from the Polish Ministry of Culture.

Admission: Free.

Times: Friday to Sunday from 12 to 6pm or by appointment.

IMT Gallery, Unit 2/210 Cambridge Heath Road, London, E2 9NQ UK


Giovanni Battista Moroni - Royal Academy of Arts

Giovanni Battista Moroni. Isotta Brembati, c.1555. Oil on canvas, 160 x 115 cm.

Exhibition preview

AN EXHIBITION entitled Giovanni Battista Moroni will be on display in the Sackler Wing at the Royal Academy of Arts from October 25, 2014 to January 25, 2015.

This exhibition of outstanding works by Giovanni Battista Moroni (c.1520-1579), widely regarded as one of the greatest painters of the sixteenth century, will be the first comprehensive survey of his oeuvre to be held in the UK.

The Royal Academy of Arts has gathered a selection of over 40 works to present Moroni not only as a distinctive portraitist but also as a fine religious painter, a role for which he is lesser known. For the first time, a number of altarpieces from the churches of the Diocese of Bergamo, northern Italy, will be displayed alongside examples of Moroni’s portraiture, chronologically charting his rise to the summit of Italian sixteenth-century painting.

From works influenced by Lotto and Moroni’s master Moretto, to later commissions earned as the leading painter of Bergamo, Giovanni Battista Moroni will offer viewers the chance to discover Moroni as an unsung genius of the Renaissance.

Moroni captured the exact likeness, character and inner life of his sitters with rare penetrating insight. His portraiture, singular not only for its unprecedented realism but also its psychological depth and immediacy, was in many ways ahead of his time. Preempting the work of Caravaggio, Moroni came to be widely collected in the nineteenth century, including Portrait of a Lady (c.1556-60) and A Knight with a Jousting Helmet (c.1556), purchased by the National Gallery, London, in 1876.

Moroni’s portraits depict members of the society in which he lived, a cast of compelling Renaissance characters whose lives played out the feuds and family dramas of a pro-Spanish aristocracy living under the Republic of Venice in the mid-sixteenth century. With a selection to establish Moroni as one of the major specialists in the genre, his portraits reveal an enamel-like brightness, a clarity of design and a touch of realism which is in contrast to the adorned portraiture of his contemporary Titian.

Although Moroni’s name was linked to Bergamo, he also lived and worked in the nearby towns of Brescia, Trent and Albino. Working in a city without a leading court, Moroni’s sitters span a surprisingly wide social spectrum; his clientèle, unique at the time, comprised intellectuals, professionals, state officers and artisans. His famous portrait of The Tailor (1565-1570), one of the highlights of this exhibition, is the first known portrait of a man depicted whilst undertaking manual labour.

In capturing the world around him, Moroni’s works also offer a vivid record of the fashions and fortunes of Bergamo, revealing changes in costume as the colourful silks of the portraits of Isotta Brembati (c.1555) and Gian Gerolamo Grumelli (c.1560), yield to the more sombre styles of the Spanish fashion, seen in the portrait of Pietro Secco Suardo (1563).

Moroni’s religious paintings were completed in accordance with the principles of the Counter-Reformation and the Council of Trent (1545-1563). In these, a worshipper is often depicted as a witness to the sacred scene, as demonstrated by The Last Supper (c.1566-1569).

The pastoral visit of the religious reformer Cardinal Charles Borromeo to the Diocese of Bergamo in 1575 prompted the churches of the region to commission many new religious paintings, and Moroni as the leading painter produced several art works for public devotion, including the altarpiece painting Saint Gotthard Enthroned with Saint Lawrence and Saint Catherine of Alexandria (c.1575).

The selection of Moroni’s religious works will also include examples of paintings intended for private devotion, such as A Gentleman in Adoration before the Baptism of Christ (c.1555-1560).

The exhibition will be a definitive survey of Moroni’s output and includes many of his greatest masterpieces. It will reveal an artist who has perhaps gone unrecognised as an exceptional painter and a master of the Renaissance.

Giovanni Battista Moroni has been organised by the Royal Academy of Arts, London. The exhibition has been curated by Simone Facchinetti, Curator of the Museo Adriano Bernareggi in Bergamo, and Arturo Galansino, Curator at the Royal Academy of Arts.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated and scholarly catalogue with contributions from Simone Facchinetti and Arturo Galansino.

Giovanni Battista Moroni Gallery

Admission: £13.50 full price (including Gift Aid donation); concessions available; children under 16 and Friends of the RA go free. Tickets for are available daily at the RA or online at Group bookings: Groups of 10+ are asked to book in advance. Telephone 020 7300 8027 or email

Times: Daily from 10am – 6pm (last admission 5.30pm); Fridays until 10pm (last admission 9.30pm).

Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House, Piccadilly, London, W1J 0BD

Tel: 020 7300 8000

Also at the Royal Academy of Arts: Anselm Kiefer (until December 14, 2014).

Celebrate a spooky Halloween half-term at Foyles

FOYLES will be hosting a series of spooky events for children this half-term (October 25 until November 2, 2014) in three of its London stores: Royal Festival Hall, Westfield White City and Westfield Stratford City.

Children of all ages are invited to take part in ghostly activities including fancy dress treasure hunts, storytelling and crafty activities, with the chance to win goody bags and special prizes.

Halloween Hide-and-Seek, with Hello Kitty – Saturday, October 25 to Sunday, November 2.

Hello Kitty is hiding in Foyles at Royal Festival Hall in her spookiest of Halloween costumes and the bookstore is seeking the help of some eerie explorers to find her. Ghosts, ghouls, and beasties of all ages are welcome to join in the Halloween fun and there will also be the chance to win some exclusive Hello Kitty Halloween books.

Venue: Royal Festival Hall, Belvedere Road, Southbank Centre, London, SE1 8XX.

Tickets: FREE, but it is best to reserve a place to avoid disappointment. To reserve email

Picture Book Party – Sunday, October 26 from 3pm to 4pm.

Foyles is having a party! Children are invited to go along and enjoy storytelling and crafty activities with Foyles’ children’s booksellers, while taking a peek at some beautiful new picture books from the lovely Walker Books. On top of all this fun activity, Foyles has got lots of exciting party goodies to share with everyone.

Venue: Westfield White City, Unit 2054, Westfield Shopping Centre, Wood Lane, London, White City, W12 7GE.

Tickets: FREE, but it is best to reserve a place to avoid disappointment. To reserve email

Halloween Treasure Hunt – Thursday, October 30 from 3pm to 4pm.

Foyles has arranged some spooky Halloween fun where children will be searching for lost witch hats. Ghosts, ghouls, and beasties of all ages are welcome to join and the best eerie explorer will win some special prizes.

Venue: Westfield Stratford City, Foyles 74-75 Lower Ground Floor, The Arcade, Westfield Stratford City, London, E20 1EH.

Tickets: FREE, but it is best to reserve a place to avoid disappointment. To reserve email

Halloween Hide-and-Seek, with Hello Kitty – Friday, October 31 from 3pm to 4pm.

Hello Kitty is hiding in Foyles at Westfield White City in her spookiest of Halloween costumes and the bookstore is seeking the help of some eerie explorers to find her. Ghosts, ghouls, and beasties of all ages are welcome to join in the Halloween fun and there will also be the chance to win some exclusive Hello Kitty Halloween books.

Venue: Westfield White City, Unit 2054, Westfield Shopping Centre, Wood Lane, London, White City, W12 7GE.

Tickets: FREE, but it is best to reserve a place to avoid disappointment. To reserve email

Dürer’s paper triumph: the arch of the Emperor Maximilian

The British Museum


THE BRITISH Museum’s current Asahi Shimbun Display is Dürer’s paper triumph: the arch of the Emperor Maximilian and can be seen in Room 3 until November 16, 2014.

The display celebrates one of the most ambitious prints ever to be completed in the Western world. Printed from a staggering 195 woodblocks on 36 sheets of paper and measuring over 3.5 meters in height, The Triumphal Arch is one of the largest prints ever produced.

Designed by the great German printmaker Albrecht Dürer (1471-1528) at the pinnacle of his career, the Arch took three years to produce. It was commissioned by the Holy Roman Emperor, Maximilian I (r. 1486–1519), to advertise his achievements.

As Holy Roman Emperor, Maximilian was the elected ruler of huge swathes of land from Austria to Spain, but he lacked the power and money to govern them effectively. The Triumphal Arch was commissioned and designed to promote the ambitions of his dynasty, the Habsburg family from Austria.

Maximilian was the first ruler to utilise the cheap but effective method of printmaking to promote his dynastic ambition. The triumphal arches of Roman antiquity, such as The Arch of Constantine in Rome, were famous across Europe throughout the medieval and Renaissance period.

Rather than rendered in sculpture or architecture, Maximilian’s Arch was produced on paper, a far cheaper option and one that could also be easily reproduced. It would have been coloured and used as wall decoration in the palaces and castles of Europe to emphasise the power and dynastic ambition of Maximilian and the Habsburgs.

The long inscription on Dürer’s Arch refers to a recreation of the ‘ancient triumphal arches of the Roman Emperors’, by which Maximilian sought to legitimise the imperial claim of his Habsburg dynasty.

The complex design of the Arch is a reflection of the close attention to detail that Maximilian took in its production. His virtues as a ruler are illustrated in details such as the ‘Portal of Honour and Might’, in the central section, which is flanked by smaller arches entitled ‘Praise’ and ‘Nobility’. Victorious military campaigns, major dynastic events and scenes from courtly life also appear.

Maximilian’s impressive genealogical lineage, which dates back to the first king of France Clovis I, is also depicted, while Maximilian’s personal emblem, a pomegranate, is shown throughout the design. This fruit has a hard skin enclosing many seeds, which represent the numerous lands unified by the Holy Roman Empire.

The production of the Arch involved many people. Dürer and his team drew the designs onto the woodblocks which then took three years to cut and print between 1515 and 1518.

Three small coats-of-arms at the front belong to those responsible for the interpretation of Maximilian’s ideas: the court historian, Johann Stabius devised the programme and wrote the inscriptions; Jörg Kolderer designed the overall appearance; and the third is that of Albrecht Dürer, who tactfully made his coat-of-arms smaller as befitted his lower social rank, but whose fame has far outstripped his collaborators.

Maximilian appointed Dürer (1471–1528) as his artistic advisor for the Triumphal Arch during a visit to Nuremberg in 1512, by which time Dürer was a painter and printmaker of considerable stature. Dürer specialised in the production of innovative, high woodcuts and engravings. By the time of his appointment by Maximilian I, the wide circulation of his prints had reached an international market and this commission was an imperial seal of approval.

This Asahi Shimbun Display shows an extremely rare complete set of prints of The Triumphal Arch alongside prints produced for Maximilian’s Triumphal Procession. This was a further ambitious project intended as a colossal frieze celebrating the Emperor’s achievements and aspirations which remained unfinished when he died in 1519.

Dürer’s contribution to the Procession is joined by two woodcuts by Hans Burgkmair, a contemporary of Dürer’s who contributed the majority of the designs for the Procession. Together with Dürer’s famous woodcut portrait of Maximilian, this display offers visitors the opportunity to appreciate the scale and complexity of these massive print projects within the context of the court of Maximilian and his patronage .

This display partly coincide with the exhibition, Germany: memories of a nation, which opens on October 16 in Room 35.

Admission: Free.

Related events:

Conserving Dürer’s paper triumph in Room 3 on Wednesday, October 29 (1.15pm to 2pm). Free, just drop in. A gallery talk by Joanna Kosek and Caroline Barry, British Museum.

Dürer’s organisation of printmaking in Room 3 on Wednesday, November 5 (1.15pm to 2pm). Free, just drop in. A gallery talk by Hilary Williams, British Museum.

Art and commerce: the prints of Albrecht Dürer in the BP Lecture Theatre on Monday, October 27 (1.30pm to 2.30pm). Free but booking is essential.

Albrecht Dürer (1471–1528) was in many ways the first artist to achieve international fame, and this was mainly through his use of the medium of the print. In this lecture, Giulia Bartrum, British Museum, will look at how he introduced sophisticated Renaissance ideas to his prints, and how his background and contacts enabled him to create a market in which to sell them.

Also at the British Museum: Ming: 50 years that changed China – in the new Sainsbury Exhibitions Gallery until January 5, 2015.

British Museum, Great Russell Street, London, WC1B 3DG


Economies of Experience - a unique theatrical conference

Event preview

ON THURSDAY, November 6, 2014, ZU-UK, BoSI and Napalm Games are presenting Economies of Experience at The Chainstore, Trinity Buoy Wharf.

Under a new name, the creators of the celebrated all-night performance, Hotel Medea, bring together some of the most creative thinkers from the arts, cultural strategy and digital gaming, to present an international programme of interactive debate on the future of digital, performative and game culture in privately owned public spaces.

Curated into three main discussions, this artist-led event will also be interspersed with a host of playful interventions, including a silent disco, a chance to have your photo taken with a gorilla and an opportunity to travel in a giant foot.

Stemming from a belief that arts, gaming and technology will become an essential component of future high streets and privately owned public spaces, the event’s panel discussions are designed to explore how artists can contribute to new entrepreneurial activity, to encourage community cohesion and engage audiences in new ways.

Confirmed organizations include Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Watershed Bristol, National Theatre Wales, Encounters Short-film and Animation Festival amongst others.

ZU-UK joint artistic director, Jorge Lopes Ramos, said: “Economies of Experience is a continuation of the our long-standing efforts to support international match-making, multi-disciplinary collaboration and extraordinary experiences for individual audience members: a meeting point for makers, innovators and programmers.”

ZU-UK is an established, award-winning independent theatre company based in East London and Rio de Janeiro. The company creates work designed to unite audiences in an increasingly globalised world through tailor-made experiences, rooted in rituals and rites. Since 2001, the company have collaborated across cultures and artistic disciplines, and are the creators of Humble Market – an immersive exhibition between UK and Brazil (2012) and Hotel Medea – an immersive over-night experience (2011).

Conference Information

Curated by Jorge Lopes Ramos and Persis Jade Maravala; in partnership with NPO Bureau of Silly Ideas (BoSI) and NAPALM STUDIO (Porto Alegre, Brazil).

PANEL 1: What can Zombies teach the arts?

Confirmed speakers include Verity McIntosh (Producer, Watershed/Pervasive Media Studio), Dan Eastmond (Director, Firestation Arts), James Wheale (Director, 2.8 Hours Later and creator Understory), Julian Sykes (Creative Director, Yellobrick) and Mariana Bandarra (Brazilian Transmedia Artist and Linguist).

PANEL 2: How can artists and gamers partner with Privately Owned Public Spaces (POPS) to engage audiences in new ways?

Confirmed speakers include Adriana Marques (Head of Arts, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park), John McGrath (Artistic Director, National Theatre Wales), John Sackett (Director, Big Adventures), Professor Jon Dovey (Director of REACT, University of the West of England, Pervasive Media Studio) and Roger Hartley (Artistic Director, BoSI (Bureau of Silly Ideas).

PANEL 3: What can business model innovation look like for an increasingly digital and gaming culture?

Confirmed speakers include Giovanni Schiuma (Director of the Innovation Insights Hub, University of the Arts London), Debbi Lander (Former Creative Programmer, North West Cultural Olympiad, Artistic Director, Encounters Short-Film and Animation Festival), Carlos Idiart (Managing Director, Napalm Games Studio and Kayumo), Iuri Freilberger (Coordinator, RS CRIATIVO) and Caroline Bucker (Founder, D.Think Group).

Tickets: £10 (includes light lunch). To book, visit

Time: 11am – 5pm.

The Chainstore, Trinity Buoy Wharf, 64 Orchard Place, London, E14 0JW

Interwoven Histories - October Gallery

Interwoven Histories

Exhibition preview

OCTOBER Gallery is presenting Interwoven Histories, an exhibition of compelling mixed-media works by artists from Africa – from October 30 to November 29, 2014.

With remarkable new works by artists, Naomi Wanjiku Gakunga, Nnenna Okore and Romuald Hazoumè, this exhibition will also introduce works by artist Adejoke Tugbiyele.

This exhibition looks at the creative force of the hand. Instead of using traditional artistic tools and technology, each artist weaves or moulds together stark narratives by hand.

Adejoke Tugbiyele (Nigeria/USA) is a sculptor. Sourcing most of her materials from Africa, Tugbiyele creates her works from palm stems, traditional broomsticks, natural fibres, wood and fabric. Spiritual aspects of Yoruba culture inspire and inform her sculpture. She also deals with political subjects related to sexual identity, womens’ rights and human rights. Tugbiyele’s work has been exhibited at institutions internationally. This will be the first time her works will be exhibited at October Gallery.

Romuald Hazoumè (Benin) is one of Africa’s foremost contemporary artists and a master of many diverse media. Hazoumè’s astute and sardonically political oeuvre includes multi-media installation, sculpture, video, photography and painting. Using the ubiquitous plastic petrol-can as his iconic signature, Hazoumè undertakes monumental installations that act as metaphors of African place, history and identity.

Whether taking aim at endemic political corruption in Africa or addressing the global indifference compounding environmental disasters, Hazoumè creates visually striking works, capable of compressing bewildering details into complex, yet nuanced metaphors that contain many powerful ideas.

Naomi Wanjiku Gakunga (Kenya/USA) is a sculptor whose works are resourcefully created from textured sheet metal and steel wire. Gakunga physically applies a particular technique in which rolls of sheet metal are immersed in water to create multifaceted effects. The corroded metals align with the concept of Jua Kali, a Swahili adage which translates literally as ‘under the hot sun’, in reference to the appreciation for serendipitous outcomes born out of discarded materials. Manipulating these chance effects, Gakunga adds dye and elaborate folds, to create her shimmering sculptures.

Nnenna Okore (Nigeria/USA) has emerged as one of the most interesting artists of her generation. Her large abstract works broadly focus on the transformation and regeneration of forms, based on observations of ecological and manmade environments. She uses materials such as newspapers, fibres, clay and burlap to create intricate sculptural installations through repetitive and labour-intensive techniques, such as weaving, twisting, sewing, dyeing, waxing and rolling. Her works explore the exquisite qualities of detailed surfaces and the surprisingly dramatic exuberance of organic formations.

Image: Adejoke Tugbiyele, Flight to Revelation, 2011. Palm stems, wire mesh, steel wire, trivets, and mannequin head, 72 × 60 × 36 cm. Photo courtesy the artist.

Admission: Free.

Opening hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 12.30pm – 5.30pm.

October Gallery, 24 Old Gloucester Street, London, WC1N 3AL

Tel: 020 7242 7367


The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities opens on November 7, 2014

A MUSEUM of rare and priceless marvels of the natural and scientific worlds, from Dodo Bones to specula, to the intriguing beauty of McDonald’s Happy Meal Toys; from old master etchings to mad women’s doodles; from two-headed kittens to living coral …

Viktor Wynd launched his Little Shop of Horrors onto an at once expectant and grateful public in 2009. Hovering halfway between theatre and sculpture, shop and museum, academic institution and art gallery, it is, like its founder, both an installation and a performance.

The Shop was just one of many elements of Wynd’s remarkable social sculpture, The Last Tuesday Society, an organisation that currently boasts some 18,000 members, sells over 13,000 tickets a year to a veritable feast of experiences and productions – events that range from evenings of loss to literary salons and masked balls – and has over 3,000 daily visitors to its website.

Now the Shop is being converted into The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art & Natural History, a unique Wunderkabinett that, as Wynd himself remarks, will offer a mirror to a world so suffused with miracles and beauty that any attempt at categorization is bound to fail.

The Museum will be divided into two parts: the Upper Galleries, with up to two art exhibitions a year, and the double-vaulted basement Wunderkabinett, displaying the permanent collection in custom-built and salvaged museum and jewellery cases.

For the opening, Wynd is inviting a number of high profile and completely unknown contemporary artists to subvert the permanent collection, responding to the notion of The Infected Museum, while upstairs a selection of work from the permanent collection, together with loans from private collections, will highlight the English Surrealists and Crypto-Surrealists, from Leonora Carrington to Austin Osman Spare.

A packed schedule of talks and demonstrations, ranging from aquarium husbandry to taxidermy, will allow visitors to plunge deeper into the world of curiosity, whilst sipping cocktails and nibbling snacks prepared by the museum café and bar. The events programme will be co-curated by Viktor Wynd, Mark Pilkington and Amber Butchart.

For the more adventurous, The Lion Room – tucked deep in the bowels of the lower galleries – is available for private hire for dinners and intimate encounters for up to ten people. Seated on deep velvet banquettes, guests will dine off a sarcophagus holding a 19th century human skeleton, surrounded by erotica and overlooked by a caged lion skeleton and a disturbingly powerful Mervyn Peake painting.

Viktor Wynd’s Cabinet of Wonders is published by Prestel to coincide with the Museum Opening. The book takes readers on a tour of homes, private collections and museums that share Wynd’s fondness for things arcane, desiccated, antique or just plain odd.

Opening Times: Wednesday to Friday, noon to 10.30pm; Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 10.30pm.

The Viktor Wynd Museum of Curiosities, Fine Art & Natural History, 11 Mare Street, Hackney, E8 4RP

London is the Place for Me 2014

Event preview

RENAISSANCE One and Tilt with Carnival Village and Partners are presenting London is the Place for Me 2014 at The Tabernacle, London, W11, on October 25 and 26.

Curated by Melanie Abrahams, Ray Funk and Alexander D Great, the second weekend festival of literature, music and limin’ returns to celebrate the vibrancy of the Caribbean and its love affair with London.

Showcasing the vibrant cultural exchange between London and the Caribbean and London as a global city, London is the Place for Me will feature more than 20 intergenerational artists, raconteurs and movers and shakers in a melting pot of liming, music, film, family workshops, debate and food and drink.

Held within a glorious carnival atmosphere, performers from Trinidad and Tobago, to Jamaica, Grenada, Guyana and Barbados will come together to celebrate the liveliness, uniqueness and cultural diversity of the Caribbean.

Performances, events and workshops will cover the themes of calypso, pan, film, carnival, cricket, Lord Kitchener with a strong focus on London as the place many have come to live, settle in and call home.

Jamaica’s current Poet Laureate, Mervyn Morris, will present a talk about legendary poet, folklorist and arts pioneer Miss Lou (Louise Bennett). The Rum Shop Lime stage in the foyer will feature performances and talks by poets, novelists and calypsonians and there will be food and plenty limin’.

Spoken word meets carnival for one of the main events, London Liming, which features a stellar line-up of calypsonians, poets, and raconteurs who are inspired by home, diaspora and personal stories. The event features live performances by Women of Steel, John Agard (winner of the Queen’s Gold Medal for Poetry, 2013), Jean ‘Binta’ Breeze, Tobago Crusoe, Abdul Malik, Anthony Joseph, Monique Roffey, Alexander D Great, Malika Booker, Jamie Renton and more.

Full festival timings can be found at

Melanie Abrahams, founder of Tilt and Renaissance One, who co-curated the programme, said: “London is the Place for Me is for everyone from the curious, to the frequent travellers, to those who imagine and create through delving into their history, memories and imaginations such as the artists you’ll experience during the weekend.

“The Caribbean was always the ‘new world’ well before the phrase was coined, due to its mix of races, cultures, foods and geography. You’ll find such variety at the festival through fantastic line-ups of writers and wordsmiths, steelpan, calypsonians, raconteurs and a Rum Shop Lime stage offering live performances. London-born and of Trinidadian and Jamaican heritage, I feel just as Caribbean as I do a Londoner. London is still the place for me.”

In 2012, Renaissance One produced the first London Is The Place For Me festival, which ran for two weeks at the Tricycle Theatre as part of the Trinidad and Tobago Cultural Village and was a cultural companion to the Olympics.

The two week programme involved more than 50 movers and shakers of T&T origin presenting family friendly events, classical concerts, a Liming party, a staging of Three Sisters by Mustapha Matura, international visits to London by writer Earl Lovelace, storyteller Paul Keens-Douglas, writer and performer Eintou Springer, storyteller Ava Hutchinson, actor Brian Green and visual artist Che Lovelace, as well as a film and talks programme.

Tickets: Early bird weekend ticket £15 (until October 5); Weekend ticket £20; Day ticket: £12.50; £1 off for residents. Each ticket permits two children under 12 when accompanied by an adult. Available on 0207 221 9700 or online at

Times: From noon (doors at 11.30am) until 10.30pm on Saturday and 9.30pm on Sunday.

The Tabernacle, Powis Square, London, W11 2AY

Ed Gray at GX Gallery

Ed Gray - Adoration at the Lions' Den: Millwall Matchday

Exhibition preview

AN EXHIBITION of work by London artist Ed Gray, Londonessence: Adoration is on display at the GX Gallery from October 10 to October 26, 2014. The gallery will also be launching Ed Gray’s new book featuring his work from 2008 -2012.

This beautifully made, 130 page book, reveals Gray’s approach to painting city dwellers and city life in the world’s most awe inspiring metropolises. From London to New York, via Mexico City, Tokyo, Bangkok, and Cape Town. The accompanying exhibition will showcase some of the works featured in the book.

London artist Ed Gray graduated from a Fine Art degree in 1995, trained to be a school teacher and taught art and design at a South London secondary school for four years. As a result of his work becoming commercially successful, Gray left his teaching career and has worked as a professional artist ever since.

Primarily a painter of London, his birthplace, and inspired by artists such as Hogarth and Breughel and the Tintin cartoons of Herge that he loved as a boy, Gray has previously worked in New York, Mexico and Tokyo to depict life in these cities.

‘I go out drawing in the streets to find characters to paint. These are real people, real moments in time, depicting the ebb and flow of city life. I aim to celebrate and commemorate these people; to leave a trace of these lives lived with my pen, my charcoal and my paintbrush’.

Increasingly recognised as one of the great contemporary painters of London and Londoners, Gray’s work explores the modern city in all its guises. Walking city streets with sketchbook and pencil in hand, Gray takes his inspiration from the real life he encounters. Back in the studio, each piece realised celebrates the day to day struggles, ambitions and aspirations that the urban environment provokes in the lives of Londoners, from the everyman and woman to familiar faces on the London scene. There is something for everyone in Gray’s work.

GX Gallery, 43 Denmark Hill, London, SE5 8RS

Tel: +(0) 20 7703 8396