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The Studio is a new contemporary arts space now open at the Horniman, developed as part of the redisplay and redevelopment work with our anthropology collections.

The Studio gives the Horniman the opportunity to put community groups and artists at the centre of our exhibitions and public programme. This new space will be the hub of an exciting new programme of exhibitions, events, and activities, inspired by the anthropology collection and co-curated by the Collective, a group made up of staff, artists and community members from groups involved in creative support programmes across South London.

The Collective

  • Anna-Maria Amato – an artist and curator of the SHARP Gallery in Brixton, which exhibits work by emerging artists, many of whom are mental health service users        
  • Joe Francis – a songwriter from a musical background, whose involvement with patients at St Christopher's Hospice has revitalised his interest in all kinds of arts, especially pottery
  • Judith Fernandes – a service user of Three Cs, which supports people with learning disabilities and/or mental health challenges, who also volunteers with the Horniman and Three Cs’ allotment
  • Julia Austin – an active member of organisations campaigning for and working with disabled people, and a member of the Horniman's Access Advisory Group for a number of years
  • Lu Firth – a community worker with a particular interest in textiles, who runs arts and heritage projects with diverse audiences
  • Michael Cox – a keen photographer who regularly attends workshops at the Horniman as part of the Community Connections group for older people
  • Nicolas Gonzalez – a musician and music group facilitator in the Mental Health and Wellbeing Centre at Blackfriars Settlement, who also volunteers with creative arts charity Heart N Soul
  • Nigel Looker – a lifelong Forest Hill resident, who is a peer support volunteer with MIND and attends the Community Connections Group at the Horniman
  • Philip Baird – an artist, musician and mental health service user, who is an Arts Ambassador for both Arts Network, a mental health arts organisation based in Lewisham, and the Dragon Café 
  • Serena Korda
  • and members of the Horniman team.

Critical Arts Group

  • Rebecca Heald - an independent curator with over twenty year's experience working in London and internationally. She is currently co-curator with Tamsin Dillon on The King's Cross Project, a series of major commissions for the King's Cross development site, working for the King's Cross Central Limited Partnership.  She lecturers on Curatorial Practice on Curating Contemporary Art at the Royal College of Art in London.
  • Dr Christopher Wright - a visual anthropologist who teaches in the Anthropology Department at Goldsmiths, University of London - in particular on the MA Visual Anthropology programme. He also continues to work in community video and to carry out research on social media and photography in the UK and elsewhere. He has published articles and books on the links between anthropology and contemporary art.
  • Manick Govinda - Programme Director (since January 2018) for SPACE. He was former Head of Artists Advisory Services & Artists Producer for Artsadmin. Govinda developed a number of initiatives for individual artists' support and development, including the Paul Hamlyn Foundation Awards for Artists in 1993-1995, the deciBel Awards for BAME visual artists and the Artsadmin artists bursary scheme.
  • Sarah Cole - a Senior Lecturer on the BA Fine Art at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design, University of the Arts London. She is also a practicing visual artist whose work engages with pedagogy, performance and place, and takes the form of events, installations, recordings, presentations and publications.
  • Dr Alison Rooke - is a Senior Lecturer in Sociology at Goldsmiths, University of London and Director of The Art of Regeneration Ltd, a social enterprise specialising in researching arts and culture. Alison’s research is concerned the dynamics of participation brought about through arts-led interventions, urban policy and regeneration. I have has a long history of working collaboratively with local communities, activists and cross-sectoral stakeholders in educational and community settings on a local, national and international scale.
  • Gina Buenfeld - is Programme Curator, Exhibitions at Camden Arts Centre, London where she has worked with internationally acclaimed artists since 2009. Her research is concerned with plant ontology, looking specifically at forms of aural and visual abstraction used in spiritual practices to enable contact with and understanding of the energies of plants. On a sabbatical in 2017, she made fieldwork in the Amazon basin, Finnish Lapland, Ireland and the Penwith region of Cornwall.

Support the project

The development of The Studio and the wider anthropology redisplay project has £3.3m funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, and the Horniman is raising an additional £1.3m through grant-making bodies and public donations, to complete the project.

To support the project text ‘HORN17 £5’ to 70070 to donate £5, give online at horniman.ac.uk/worldgallery or donate £1 via the contactless reader at the Horniman Museum and Gardens.