Submit to Love opens its doors!

By admin
Posted: 08/11/2018

We’re opening the doors for our first festive “Open Studio” event on Thursday 6th December – come and join us!

More than 40 brain injury survivors turned artists will be throwing open the doors to their Hackney home next month for the very first “Open Studio” event. On Thursday 6th December, Submit to Love Studios based at Headway East London, will welcome members of the public to view and purchase work, and learn more about its unique creative practice.

The studio supports a group of largely self-taught artists; each using diverse methods and practices to produce works that are unguarded, emotive and informed by a truly distinctive vision. It also forms part of Headway East London, a charity supporting more than 650 survivors of brain injury and their families across 13 London boroughs. Over the past two decades, the charity and its artists have repositioned art from a rehabilitation activity to both a vocation and passion project; whilst also establishing a studio with a growing reputation boasting recent exhibitions and workshops at the Southbank Centre and Science Museum. This event invites art lovers and the local community to celebrate the studio’s successful journey so far.

Exhibited work on the night will include solo portfolios and collaborative projects; covering painting, illustration, sculpture, ceramics and print work. Visitors will have the opportunity by buy a selection of original work, alongside gift products and merchandise featuring studio artwork. A number of artists will also be present to introduce their work and practices.

Botticelli, Submit to Love & Me…

Chris Miller is a retired teacher who sustained a brain injury after having a benign tumour removed in 2012, and began created work in the studio after become a member of charity Headway East London.

Chris Miller, commented: “I generally tend to do paintings of myself. They’re my versions of famous pictures, with me in them, capturing my sense of humour. I’m not very good at drawing, but that doesn’t mean I can’t think about things. My Botticelli Venus picture is like saying, ‘It’s OK to be like me. It’s not good, but it’s OK.”

When asked why the studio is important to his work he said “Because it’s a collective. There’s other people with brain injuries so you’re not the only one doing your own thing.”

“I didn’t do artwork before I came there at all so it’s totally developed, I didn’t have that before anywhere. When I first went there, I didn’t feel very good about myself, so you go into the art room and Michelle gets you to do something (she’s quite persuasive) and then there’s others who have more serious issues. You’re feeling sorry for yourself when others have more speech and movement difficulties than you, but they’re laughing and joking and you think, why am I not like that.”

Miller continued: “Art has helped me to tell my story, and to feel positive about myself. It’s provided a way to talk to my friends about what happened to me. It’s also the perfect excuse to practice using my right hand again. My pictures are part of my history. It’s created a focus for my life – inviting people in and sharing my work.”

Submit to Love Studios’ Open Studio event takes place on Thursday 6th December, 6-9pm.

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