My last posted blog mentioned my plans for the future, one of them being to have a solo exhibition in London. Well for the past 6 months that is what I have been planning, and as of tomorrow, has come into fruition. Perfect Imperfection - The Art of Healing opens to the public at mid-day at Riflemaker, London W1F 9SU until Saturday.
I began my research, before Christmas, into finding a suitable venue to show my work to a London audience. I contacted a few small galleries to see if they hired out their space. I then caught the train to London to check out some of these spaces. All the galleries I looked at were very expensive, so I had to be certain this was the right thing for me to do. I have faith that my work is strong enough to attract a second look and for the viewer to question its aesthetic and I know it sells. The point of showing in London is to get my work out there in the London art scene, get a gallery interested in representing me and of course hope a few visitors begin a Billie Bond collection of repaired work. I open my own doors rather than wait for them to be opened for me.
After a few weeks of research I had shortlisted 3 galleries as a potential space to hire. One in trendy Brick Lane, one of Oxford Street and another in Beak Street, Soho. After much deliberation I chose the Soho venue in Beak Street. Riflemaker is a small rustic listed building with old dusty floorboards and layers of worn paint on the panelled walls. There was a visible history in this space - not the silent blank canvas you get in a typical 'white cube' style gallery. I connected with the gallery immediately and thought its aged interior a perfect setting for my portraits that also hold history in their altered and distorted surfaces. This was not only the smallest of the three galleries but also the most expensive. I spent a long time justifying this choice but as they always say - Location, Location, Location.
I was invited to bring a piece of work up to the gallery to see how it sat in the space. Inner Being 2 sat in the window looking out onto Beak Street, yes, this was the perfect setting.
I spent a while in the gallery planning in my head where each piece would be placed, got to be so careful not to make it look like a shop front.
Since January, I have made six new pieces from scratch to sit alongside six pieces already made. I spent a few days trying to come up with a title that covered the fact the work was about repair as well as destruction. Input from my husband and eldest daughter made the final cut of Perfect Imperfection - The Art of Healing.