Category Archives: feature

JULY FEATURE: Julia Hales and Finn O’Branagain: You Know We Belong Together

‘Julia has survived a house fire, there’s been stalkers, and there have been amazing weddings she’s attended – Julia has had such an incredible life and she has so many amazing stories’, says Finn O’Branagain, co-writer of You Know We Belong Together, in reference to her co-writer and star, Julia Hales. One of those stories is that she is the first person living with Down syndrome to host Compass, a show which focuses on investigative journalism and intellectual storytelling on ABC ­Television – the national TV broadcaster in Australia. She hosted her own documentary, The Upside, which both shone a light on her own talent and ambition, and celebrated living with Down syndrome in a culture where many wrongly presume that Down syndrome equates to poor prospects and a poor quality of life.

You Know We Belong Together was developed over a year and a half, initially selling out at the Perth Festival in 2018. Hales has worked tirelessly to become a professional actor since before she even knew she had Down syndrome, first realising her ambitions when her older sister wanted to become an actor as well. The show was supposed to come to the Edinburgh Fringe in 2020, but for some reason it was delayed until this year.

Rather than looking to her numerous accomplishments and experiences to centre the show though, Hales knew what would tie it together: the beloved Australian soap opera, Home and Away. She’s been watching it since 1988, and has dreamt about being on it since then. She loves ‘the cast, the action, and all the drama.’ O’Branagain reckons the drama of Hales’s life is worthy of a soap opera in and of itself.

But You Know We Belong Together is not simply a show about a woman’s love of a TV show; for Hales and O’Branagain, Home and Away is a springboard for exploring her life, her stories, and her experiences. After all, it makes sense ­– what better way to glimpse into someone’s life than by watching them light up through the lens of what makes them tick?

From the unassuming love of Home and Away, Hales goes on to construct a performance about so much more than that. When asked to describe what You Know We Belong Together is about, she says, ‘It’s about acceptance and belonging, relationships, karaoke.’ But one of the most striking differences between the two women is Hales’s proclivity to speak about themes, activities, and goals, versus O’Branagain’s to speak about the importance of Hales herself. O’Branagain: ‘It all fits together because of [Julia] and through her; that the work is about Julia and her life and her dreams and her loves.’ It goes without saying that Hales is modest. Unless you ask the right questions, she doesn’t say much about herself unless it pertains to her work. Both perspectives equally illuminate the full picture of You Know We Belong Together.

In her own words, it took about three years in total to get You Know We Belong Together ‘up and running’. And the very first stage of research was interviewing people with Down syndrome. Hales is a leader in the Down syndrome community, and her show is starring, informed and created by people with Down syndrome. Alongside the express purpose of entertainment, she wants the show to be educational.

It goes without saying that the world has historically treated disabled people poorly, and we still have far to go when it comes to ableism and equality. Hales believes that by educating people on the treatment of people in her community in the past and present, we can make sure we don’t repeat the same mistakes again. For the disabled community, You Know We Belong Together has been a ‘strong and absolutely joyful depiction of living with disability on stage’, and O’Branagain is not just speaking about Julia here: the whole cast has Down syndrome.

You Know We Belong Together has had no less an impact on people who don’t have disabilities either, though. O’Branagain pointed out that 20% of Australians have a disability, and not all of them are necessarily visible. Therefore, very few people don’t know anyone who lives with one. She says, ‘It’s so important that we share these stories, because far less than 20% of the stories we see on stage and screen feature disabilities.’

Although You Know We Belong Together is an unabashedly optimistic show, developing a piece that so frankly grapples with the social attitudes around Down syndrome and disability necessitates some difficult conversations. For her research, she interviewed not only people with Down syndrome, but parents of people with Down syndrome, and even couples who had previously terminated pregnancies when they found out their child was going to have Down syndrome. Of course, it’s O’Branagain who is eager to shine the light on Hales; she remarked that ‘as somebody on the outside watching a very difficult and fraught conversation – a very emotional conversation – happening, Julia handled it with such kindness and such elegance.’

Hales clearly has an emotional and compassionate capacity far greater than the average person, and her ambition disregards the difficulty inherent in conceiving of You Know We Belong Together. And her labour is paying dividends: O’Branagain describes how on lunch breaks people used to speak to Julia in an infantilising way, but now is ‘inundated with people wanting to talk to her about the show and saying that they loved the show and that they’re amazed by the show.’

The transformation of interactions between Hales and the public is mirrored in a change of attitudes to disability in those who watch the show, too. A doctor who saw You Know We Belong Together approached the director because earlier that day, he had counselled a pregnant woman that she should terminate her pregnancy since the child was going to have Down syndrome. After seeing the show, he said he was going to have a very different conversation with her.

Hales notes that she loves to get audience members involved – she recruits a ‘mum and dad’ from the audience, and at another point asks for ‘a very handsome man’. For her, You Know We Belong Together is a part of a conversation in which people with disabilities can be rightly given undivided attention. Yet a conversation always has more than one participant, and her invitation to the audience, disabled and non-disabled, to participate and to involve themselves in a karaoke rendition of the Home and Away theme song speaks volumes to her key theme: belonging.

You Know We Belong Together presents its UK premiere at the Southbank Centre (18-20 Aug) and Edinburgh’s Royal Lyceum Theatre (24-27 Aug).

Written by Cian Kinsella Cian is a Classics teacher and part-time pub quizmaster living in London who is primarily interested in music but is also interested in theatre, literature, and visual arts. He is particularly intrigued by the relationship between art, criticism, and the capital forces always at play. Furthermore, he believes that subjectivity – which is ultimately at the heart of all artistic and cultural criticism – should not be concealed, but probed and perhaps even celebrated. Who decides what we like? How do they construct widely held beliefs about what is good? These are two of the questions Cian looks to address.

Foot Notes:

Brought from Australia by theatre-maker and performance artist Julia Hales, You Know We Belong Together is a warm and uplifting play about people living with Down Syndrome, love, friendships, dreams – and a love of Home and Away. Julia’s aspirations of being the first person with Down Syndrome to act in Home and Away are central to the plot and actor Ray Meagher (Alf Stewart) makes a cameo, infusing the play with nostalgia for the beloved Australian soap opera. This acclaimed play won two Performing Arts WA Awards and Julia was nominated for the prestigious Australian of the Year award.

Following sold out seasons in 2018 as part of Perth Festival and Black Swan’s 2019 season, You Know We Belong Together comes to the Southbank Centre.

You Know We Belong Together is written by Julia Hales with Finn O’Branagáin and Clare Watson. The original production was commissioned by Perth Festival and co-produced by Perth Festival, Black Swan State Theatre Company and DADAA.

Black Swan’s tour of You Know We Belong Together is supported by the UK/Australia Season Patrons, the Australian Government, the British Council, and Creative Partnerships Australia through the Australian Cultural Fund as part of the UK/Australia Season 2021/22, the Government of Western Australia DLGSC and the Black Swan Future Fund.

AUGUST FEATURE: Street Style Abstract Painter Kai Motta: ‘Just Paint, Don’t Stop’

(Featured image: Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue 02 524cm x 180cm 2022)

Chelsea/Pimlico born artist Kai Motta was immersed in street art, graffiti and hip hop culture from a young age.

Each of his paintings are an expression, a capturing of a moment, a feeling indelibly marked across the canvas made to look like a piece of graffiti, made to look like a word, but actually, they say nothing.

Everything is said in the energy, the cadence, the rhythm of each piece like notes in a symphony. What it means, he leaves to the viewer. The whole process of painting for Kai will have a soundtrack, sometimes just a song constantly on repeat or a full album. John Coltrane, Jimmy Smith, Public Enemy, the Beastie Boys, The White Album by the Beatles or The Doors can be regularly heard when he paints. We chat to Kai about his journey living as an artist and why having a gallery representing him leaves him more time to paint.

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue 69 40cm x 40cm 2022

Your work has a musical abstract rhythm. Tell us about your hip hop influences and inspirations?  

Hip hop has been a huge influence in my life from a very young age, perhaps as early as 11 or 12. I distinctly remember in 1985, and unfortunately this kind of eagerness and anticipation will never exist again, sitting by the radio on a Saturday night recording onto cassettes America’s latest street import ‘The Show’ by Dougie Fresh and the Get Fresh Crew featuring Slick Rick. It was an introduction into a whole new world for me, light years away from Duran Duran, Culture Club and other 80s icons in Britain at the time. I loved the art and like any self-respecting ‘b-boy’ I owned the two bibles of graffiti: Subway Art and Spraycan Art turning the pages in awe at the gigantic vibrant, sometimes highly complex ‘pieces’ spread across trains and buildings by these incredibly brave artists who lived outside of the law.

Other inspirations are other painters work, an anger galvanized by the iniquities of politics or something similar, something psychological under the skin struggling to surface. To paint abstract is to roll the dice. You never know what is going to be left on the canvas when you finish, after the process of catharsis. I like the danger. For me the period of incubation can be painful as I wrestle with something inside, then when the moment hits, I enter the studio and set up canvasses.

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue 32 245cm x 47cm 2021

What inspired you to start painting in the first place and how would you describe your art?

From a young age I loved art. Our family grew up a 20-minute walk away from the Tate Britain in Pimlico and my father would routinely take us there to look at the art. I recall being stunned by the work of Roy Lichenstein particularly the ‘WHAAM!’ piece, as it should, it had an indelible effect along with my many others, but that piece in particular. Then there were the years of graffiti and hip-hop culture which played its role and then my love for the European Tachisme non-geometric and the American Abstract Expressionist movement. I just love those huge paintings. So, art was always there in different forms. I recall at school I wouldn’t bother with certain lessons; I just didn’t see the need for them and would routinely find myself just sitting in the art class. The teacher was very welcoming and accommodating, would simply just give me time and be very encouraging about what I was doing with art. I would say she was a very strong influence and helped me gain confidence. I like to paint with oil what looks like a word, but is actually a piece of abstract art.

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue 57 57cm x 84cm – part of triptych 3 of 3 2022

Why do you create art?

I don’t think there is a ‘why’, I just have to. It’s a visceral demand even though pieces sit in my mind for weeks at a time before I fight with the canvas. It’s not a delicate approach, it’s a heavy storm, a jagged rhythm, an apoplectic cadence. I feel like it’s a chaotic symphony in action. I paint because I have to. There is a compulsion. Something internal.

I can’t speak for other artists, but I imagine they may feel something similar. I can’t tell when it’s going to happen, but when it hits, I’m gone.

Chaos in the Machine

Chaos in the Machine 01 370cm x 180cm 2018

There is a lot of energy and what looks like ‘organised chaos’ in your paintings. What are you trying to say in them?

I think that is a good description for the work. If you look on the website the titles for the different periods reflect distinctive mental states. “Anhedonia and Anger”, “Contained Chaos”, “Chaos in the Machine” and “Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue”. I would say I am quite an angry person. Not irrationally, but with the state of the political and social landscape, I think this anger partly, coupled with an expressive internal energy is released in the paintings.

Contained Chaos

Contained Chaos 01 150cm x 148cm 2017

You recently got representation from new virtual gallery Sputo Art. How important is it for artists to be linked with a gallery and how will this partnership help you create and showcase your art?

The world of art is behemothic, it’s extensive and challenging, coupled with having to play the social media game on a hourly basis, gallery representation is incredibly welcomed. Being with a gallery, an agent also means people will take you seriously. I like the idea of the relationship/partnership because essentially, I just want to paint and I’m good at it and Sputo are excellent agents and good at being exactly that. Sputo is great at listening, understanding the work and the process and struggle to produce it, they get it! They help me to clearly interpret and promote the art to a wider audience, whether it be my peers, potential buyers or organisations. That’s not what I do, or what I want to do and leaves me more time to paint. It’s important to know and understand your limits, it will only help one to advance.

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue 21 148cm x 148cm 2020

Before partnering with Sputo how did you make a living from your art or was painting more of a hobby?

Painting has never been a hobby. From the minute I picked up the brush I was serious, it wasn’t something I ever dabbled in, it was a determined, sincere need to create. I’ve sold plenty of paintings from exhibitions and private commissions.

How will Sputo be supporting you moving forwards and how hard is it to be taken seriously without a gallery representing you?

Sputo will be handling all art business affairs from exhibitions to contacts to commissions. You need gallery representation, you need someone in your corner, someone that believes in you, has good contacts and that you can trust. That relationship is key.

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue

Obsessional Compulsive Dialogue 01 90cm x 90cm 2020

What advice would you give to a young artist or art student trying to pursue a career as an artist?

Paint like your whole world depended on it. Just paint, don’t stop. Read, imbibe, become obsessed and fixated with what you are doing and try to believe in yourself. Suck everything in through osmosis. Try to experience everything, you never know what will unlock that true you, that true potential. If the work is authentic it will shine through but be prepared to wait and always remember Van Gogh only sold one painting when he was alive! Don’t listen to anyone who advises you to be safe, to endure a route of security. Be undeniable.

The setting up of the canvas is as important as the painting itself. It’s important to acknowledge each step, to be fully immersed and be in the moment. I find this produces the best results. I have to be mindful not to fall into the trap of trying to repeat a process because of an outcome/success of a previous painting for you can never capture the same moment and it only ever leads to disappointment and a feeling of failure. Plus, you don’t want to turn into a factory.

When I am in full abandon, without a net, when fear is absent then the painting generally tends to produce, in my opinion, the best results, the ones I can live with.

Street Style Abstract Painter Kai Motta

Chaos in the Machine 03 370cm x 180cm 2019

Kai Motta’s original paintings and limited edition prints are available to buy at He’s also open to doing commissions.

Interview by Jules Nelson who does marketing and operations for Abundant Art.

SEPTEMBER FEATURE: The Cartoon Museum Late: Laughter Lab – “Explaining the science behind humour”

They say that the one fundamental aspect that distinguishes humans from animals is laughter. As the only known living species that can apprehend humour, we have had quite a long history of appreciating comedy that was already present all the way back in Ancient Greece, where the very first theatrical comedies took place. The Cartoon Museum in Bloomsbury plays with the concept of universality of comedy by displaying a wide collection of cartoons that vary from French caricatures in the 1700s, to WW2 comic strips, to today’s political caricatures. Situated next to Oxford Street, the Cartoon museum has many surprises to offer, the latest being the Late event “Laughter Lab” that occurred on May 26. Abundant Art got a sneak peek of this evening event rich in museum tours, interesting talks, stand-up comedy and most importantly, a good amount of laughter.

The Cartoon Museum

Annie McGrath talking to the audience – Image credit: The Cartoon Museum

The night revolved around the social and psychological experiment that had been run at the museum during the last months. Oxford professor Robin Dunbar was there to announce the awaited results of “the world’s first mass experiment exploring the psychology behind cartoon humour”. The test consisted in asking people to go through pairs of cartoons and determine which ones they found funnier, which resulted in an interesting study of the different types of humour that appeal to various demographics. It divided the audience between young and old, men and women, etc. to understand who preferred visual humour, political jokes, grotesque comedy… All of the results were presented in a very clear lecture-like way, which was still regularly punctuated by laughs from the audience.

stand-up comedy that animated the evening

The stand-up comedy that animated the evening – Image credit: The Cartoon Museum

Overall, the event was very rich and light-hearted at the same time. Even the insightful museum tour and the academic speech were all executed in a highly cheerful manner that kept the guests in a good mood for the whole night. The friendliness of the staff was remarkable, as was the choice of speakers and of the comedians that animated the night. Rob Auton, Lucy Pearman and Annie McGrath were particularly hilarious, and their stand-up comedy was of serious competition to the written comedy on the walls.

In addition to participating in the evening, Abundant Art had the occasion to chat with Emma Stirling-Middleton, the curator of the museum, and Joe Sullivan, the Director, to get an insight into the process that led to organise this event.

Who’s idea was it to do this mass public experiment exploring the psychology behind cartoon humour?

Emma: It has been such a challenging couple of years for us all, I wanted to make a light and joyful exhibition that brings people together to laugh and be merry! So often when we think about cartoons we focus on the creator, the artwork, the writing. But we rarely think about what is happening inside the mind of the viewer. When we look at a cartoon there is a moment between seeing the cartoon and our reaction to it – whether that’s a smirk, an audible laugh, or a decision that it isn’t funny. I thought ‘wouldn’t it be wonderful to make a whole exhibition all about that magical moment inside our minds?’

How did you choose what cartoons to include in this experiment and how did people cast their votes?

Emma: I started researching what work has been done on the psychology of laughter and cartoons, and soon came across the work of Robin Dunbar. Over the past 50 years, he has researched all kinds of fascinating things – relationships, friendships, love, language, religion, brain evolution, social media and the internet and much (much) more. I found he had undertaken a psychology experiment around stand-up comedy and jokes and made some really interesting discoveries. I wondered whether it might be possible to apply the same experiment to cartoons. We had a phone call and chatted through the idea and from there we were laughing along together, devising our mad mass public experiment!

Joe: We worked with Robin to identify cartoons that responded to different psychological mind states, and paired cartoons so we could look at the difference between the states of mind they put people in. Visitors then responded via a survey, simply ticking A or B for which they thought was the funniest cartoon. So, it was a simple entry point for the audience but actually gave insight into quite complex psychology. The data – consisting of thousands of submissions – was inputted by a wonderful team of museum volunteers, and Robin analysed it and drew out his conclusions. The results are going to be published in a scientific paper, and I hope that our visitors feel empowered by how much we value their opinions.

What do you think makes a cartoon funny and what doesn’t? Is there a unique set of elements that make a cartoon funny?

Emma: I think that’s the wonderful thing about gag cartoons – nobody knows! Is it good writing? Good drawing? A perfect symbiosis between the two? Is it timing, with what’s happening in the world? Or is it utterly personal and subjective? Our experiment will reveal more information from one psychological perspective, but of course, the reality is that it’s something us mere mortals will never truly know – and isn’t that magical!

How important is laughter in our everyday lives and is it usually spontaneous and deeply personal?

Joe: Laughter brings people together. It’s been a fundamental building block of hominid interaction for 10 million years and transcends human society – all sorts of apes laugh together! It can be spontaneous but doesn’t have to be – I’m sure everyone knows someone with a fake laugh!

Emma: Having watched visitors go round and do the experiment, it has been wonderful to see how it brings people together and sparks conversation. People are comparing results, getting competitive, taking interest in their similarities and differences. I also love how our visitor’s personal insights into our collection are going to reveal new information and enrich our understanding of cartoon art.

How important are culture and society to the Cartoon Museum?

Joe: The museum champions a uniquely British art form – satirical cartooning, which is the result of 317 years of a free press in this country. That means for a long time we’ve been able to laugh at all the idiotic things that politicians, the Royals, and celebrities have done, without anyone being able to do anything about it! Alongside that history, we have an incredible tradition in comics, including of course the Beano and 2000 AD among many, many others. Cartooning is interesting because it goes hand-in-hand with society – it holds up a mirror and reflects the world at the time the art was made, which gives us a really interesting window into exactly what cartoonists think of the world around them, how they process it, and what about the world makes them laugh.

How can children and adults attend your cartooning, comics and animation workshops at the museum? How important is it to get creative?

Joe: It is incredibly important to get creative! We want everyone who visits the museum – or sees us online, attends an event, visits our stall at a community fair – to leave wanting to pick up a pencil and draw something. Being creative helps you relax, helps you express yourself, and helps you make sense of the world.

We offer all sorts of events and workshops for adults and children, from complete amateurs wanting to learn to draw simple caricatures to early-career artists making their way in the industry who want to understand the finer points of intellectual property! We also have free downloadable worksheets on our website – so the best place to start is by heading there and finding out how to draw Beyonce!

The Cartoon Museum has proven once again to be a true hidden gem in London, and adds a much-needed touch of humour and glee to everyday matters. Check out its permanent exhibition and the many more projects it has to offer at 

Reviewed by Céline Galletti – Celine is a volunteer writer for Abundant Art. Originally from France and Italy, she follows her passion for writing and art by studying Comparative Literature at UCL, London. As an international student living in London, she is determined to fully experience and understand the city’s vibrant arts scene, and be a part of its creative storm.

OCTOBER FEATURE: Brinson: Before He Cracks The Sky and 10 Things Every Christian Hip Hop Artist Should Know

I would not call myself an expert in self-help books, but Brinson Wright’s 10 Things Every Christian Hip Hop Artist Should Know is a highly specialised illustration of their common features. I am not an aspiring Christian rapper either, but there is serious value in Brinson’s counsel, no matter your goals. Coming in at fewer than 40 pages, Brinson wastes not a single word in his book. It is split into 10 chapters; each chapter is a rule for finding success as a Christian rapper.

Earlier this year, I received a copy of Manifest: 7 Steps to Living Your Best Life by Roxie Nafousi. It’s a bright orange hardback with minimal artwork, big line spacing, and thick paper; it’s nice to hold, to feel, and to look at. Perfect to be left on a coffee table or as a spot of colour on a bookshelf – and never to be read.

 Part of selling a self-help book is knowing your audience. I have no concrete basis for this claim, but I believe these books are less about the exhortations themselves than about our personal dialogues with the words and how we see ourselves as congruous with or aspiring to the author. For example, Jordan Peterson’s 12 Rules For Life – drivel though it may be – is invariably seen in the hands of metaphorically lost, doe-eyed young men. Yet they are drawn to Peterson’s belief that the waning of masculinity in society is responsible for its apparent decline. Ironically, these boys have little in the way of masculinity themselves, toxic or otherwise.

 Nafousi’s book, on the other hand, speaks to a millennial consumership. Minimal and aesthetically pleasing, one not only wants to be reading it, but to be seen reading it. Nafousi relates to this reader from the off: she returns to London after a month of yoga somewhere in Asia only to slip into the old habits of smoking and drinking too much; she filters manifestation through the language of vague spirituality – never religion – with terms like ‘the Universe’, ‘abundance’, and ‘vibrations’. It’s for the kind of person who visualises themself as being or becoming that kind of person.

 Anyone who’s experienced or researched Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) may recognise many of the nuggets of wisdom given by Nafousi and others. (Peterson’s rules are more poorly connected ramblings.) Be grateful, set SMART goals, work consistently, be patient, and have faith that what you want will happen – realign your cognition, realign your behaviour. We are far more receptive to these ideas when they are set out in terms and by a voice which reflect your own values.

 Brinson, like Nafousi and others, refracts many reliable precepts, but through the hyper-specific world of Christian hip hop. ‘Guard your heart’ and ‘You gotta work’ are two exemplary chapter titles which fit into the CBT–self-help guidance matrix. But the most curious part is Brinson’s negotiation between personal success and ministerial success. He frequently refers to ‘your ministry’ – i.e. your personal religious practice and evangelism. Even though one of his rules is that your career should be ‘all about the people’, hustle culture and individualism are woven into the fabric of 10 Things, in all its Americanness.

 Although the lexicon of ‘the Universe’ alongside advice like ‘wake up earlier’ made me want to vomit, I recognised the value in Manifest. Likewise, Brinson calls for unwavering faith in the power of God to deliver what you need. Nafousi filled her book with afffirmations, increasingly popular phrases you repeat to yourself to reframe your self-image; 10 Things has a prayer at the end of each chapter. But what rings throughout all effective self-help books is faith.

 Testament to the efficacy of 10 Things is my strengthened resolve after finishing it in one (albeit not that long) sitting. Brinson’s book sits at the intersection of self-help, motivational speaking, and gospel preaching – three practices deeply embedded in black American culture. The only thing that makes the book seem strange is the relatively esoteric focus on Christian hip hop. This cultural gap was most apparent in some moments that read almost like satire: ‘[Jesus had to] get his miracle flow up, and THEN he went into the ministry. Jesus was 30 years old before he went on tour, so don’t be too hard on yourself.’; ‘imagine a new rapper named D’Maskus who just finished up his album. Next, we have a guy named Fresh Praise Dude (FPD), who is signed to a big Christian rap label.’

One of my favourite things about 10 Things is that it is good advice from someone who is in the Christian hip hop grind. Peterson’s first rule for life, for example, which encourages you to be dominant and accept the hardships life throws at you, horribly backfired when he was admitted to a Russian medical centre in 2020 for benzodiazepine addiction. And as far as I can tell, most of Nafousi’s huge success is from her manifestation guidance – I’m not convinced that her book will help me become either a more successful teacher or a better culture writer.

 Full disclosure: Before He Cracks The Sky, Brinson’s latest album, was my first brush with Christian hip hop. His far-reaching stylistic range is one of the first things I noticed about it – second only to the quite unusual ‘God chaserz baby!’ producer tag at the beginning of most of the tracks. The second song, ‘Flowers From Da South’, wouldn’t sound out of place on an early Drake album; the following track, ‘O.M.S.’, showcased heavily autotuned vocals and quasi-Pi’erre Bourne production. Virtually all the songs are in the ‘hustler hip hop’ vein, with lyrics about working hard, surviving hardships, and reflecting on struggles and successes. Some match the unintentional comedy of the book, like ‘Comment Section’, when the internet troll realises he’s been blocked at the end of the song.

 In both his songs and writing, Brinson is concerned with the duality of secular and religious music. Since the blues guitarist Robert Johnson was reported to have sold his soul to the devil in return for musical success, the divide between the two in American contemporary music – especially in black communities – has been a strong one. (The same divide was apparent in the gulf between gospel and soul in the 60s and 70s.) But no matter how odd Brinson’s world may seem to us in a Britain where religious congregation plays a much smaller role, the religious–secular duality is a continuation of an American music tradition that lays the foundations of millions of lives across the pond.

Image: Before He Cracks The Sky, album cover

Before He Cracks The Sky | Brinson (

Feature by Cian Kinsella

Cian is a Classics teacher and part-time pub quizmaster living in London who is primarily interested in music but is also interested in theatre, literature, and visual arts. He is particularly intrigued by the relationship between art, criticism, and the capital forces always at play. Furthermore, he believes that subjectivity – which is ultimately at the heart of all artistic and cultural criticism – should not be concealed, but probed and perhaps even celebrated. Who decides what we like? How do they construct widely held beliefs about what is good? These are two of the questions Cian looks to address.

About Brinson

Brinson’s passions for youth ministry are backed by over a decade of experience and training as an ordained minister and studies in the renowned Music Business Program at Belmont University in Nashville, TN. He is a 2011 graduate of the SOMET Ministry School, has traveled and performed his music and ministering the word of God on international stages, and was recognized as an Honoree at Atlanta’s Holy Hip Hop Awards. It all led to his founding of GodChaserz Entertainment (GCE) which has since released over 20 Christ-centered hip hop albums by a roster of artists designed to inspire, uplift, and entertain. The works of Brinson and his GCE family have been covered by various media outlets including, NPR, MTV, Jacksonville Magazine,,,, The Houston Chronicle, The Wade-O Radio Show and the GodChaserz Podcast.

About ‘10 Things Every Christian Hip Hop Artist Should Know’

Regardless of your specialty in the music industry, this book is an indispensable resource. Readers new to the business of Christian hip hop and seasoned ministry professionals alike will find Brinson’s handbook to be a practical guide for navigating the complex world of music and ministry. This text is ideal for introducing concepts such as an introduction to Christian hip hop, general music business, as well as more focused thoughts on the heart of ministry. 10 Things Every Christian Hip Hop Artist Should Know includes coverage of key topics such as promoting online, marketing, creating multiple income streams, and the entrepreneurial mindset required for success. Uniquely, it also provides direction on conducting business without compromising the Gospel and prayers geared toward guarding your heart while in music ministry.

Available on 10 Things Every Christian Hip Hop Artist Should Know : Brinson: Books

Brinson | GodChaserz – New Album REVERSING TOMORROW Available Now!

About Roxie Nafousi

Roxie Nafousi is a self-development coach, manifesting expert, author, ambassador for the Mental Health Foundation and Instagram Agony Aunt. Her commitment to transforming the lives of people who suffer with emotional and mental health issues, and helping them to fulfil their potential, has seen her become a well-known figure in the wellness world. She has hosted self love and motivational workshops.

Home Roxie Nafousi

About Manifest: 7 Steps to Living Your Best Life

MANIFEST is the essential guide for anyone and everyone wanting to feel more empowered in their lives. Self-development coach and ‘Queen of Manifesting’ Roxie Nafousi will show you how in just seven simple steps you can understand the true art of manifestation and learn how to create the life you have always dreamed of.

Manifest: The Sunday Times bestseller that will change your life: Nafousi, Roxie: 9780241539590: Books

Read our September Feature here: Julia Hales & Finn O’Branagain: You Know We Belong Together (

November Feature: Christmas Events 2022 – Celebrate this festive season with the buzz and glitter around!

The Witches of Oz 

The Vaults, Waterloo, Date: 21 Sept 2022 – 15 Jan 2023 
Immersive dinner theatre, drag performers and cabaret

The Emerald City is in a state of glittering turmoil. It’s the classic Good vs. Wicked, and audiences have been invited to cast their vote in a fierce battle to be crowned the next Witch of Oz. Blending theatre, dining and drag, The Witches of Oz invites audiences into The Vaults bespoke venue to try a Feast of Oz.

Tickets: | 020 7401 9603

Stranger Sings!

The Vaults, Waterloo, Date:  5 Oct 2022 – 15 Jan 2023

Musical Theatre, Parody, Comedy

The musical theatre parody based on Netflix hit Stranger Things, making its UK debut fresh from an award-winning off Broadway run. Hawkins, Indiana, in 1983, when life was simpler, hair was longer, and unattended children were abducted by extraterrestrial beings. Stranger Sings assures a night of indulgent pop culture references, heavy synth, bad parenting, and dancing demogorgons, all in campy 80s nostalgia.

Tickets: | 02074019603

Peter Pan’s Labyrinth

Sleeping Trees present at The Vaults, Waterloo Date: 18 Oct 2022 – 15 Jan 2023

Theatre, Alt-Comedy Theatre, Interactive

Multi-award-winning comedy trio Sleeping Trees are returning with another festive mash up, this year taking JM Barrie’s beloved boy who would not grow up, adding 20 years and 50 pounds, and sending him to the depths of Labyrinth. In an alternative comedy combination where stardust meets fairy-dust, Sleeping Trees brings a show full of fast-paced storytelling, a cult soundtrack, surreal character comedy and a party atmosphere. Guest starring Dan Wye, otherwise known as drag queen Séayoncé.

Tickets: | 02074019603


Underbelly, Christmas in Leicester Square, Date: 9 November 2022 -7 January 2023

The Olivier Award-Winning, International Cabaret Sensation Is Back!

Multi-award-winning comedy trio Sleeping Trees Critically acclaimed, genre-defining and world-renowned cabaret, La Clique returns to London’s glittering West End this Christmas, fresh off a sold-out Edinburgh Fringe season. Starting on the 9th of November and concluding on the 7th of January 2023 in the majestic Spiegeltent in Leicester Square. With less than 100 days until Christmas, a night with La Clique is the ultimate, awe-inspiring experience to get you into the festive spirit. Featuring a brand-new cast bringing you spectacular entertainment, jaw-dropping acrobatics and never seen before performances – plus some returning favourites.


The Last Laugh

Tabard Theatre, Date: 9 November – 3 December 2022

A beleaguered comedy writer meets a stubborn government censor with no sense of humour in repeated attempts to gain approval for his new play. As the writer jumps through the censor’s hoops, a new play emerges while the two very different men come to understand one another and build an unlikely bond.

The Last Laugh is by Richard Harris (Stepping Out, A Touch of Frost) adapted from an original play by Japanese writer Kōki Mitani. It premièred in 2007 on a national tour with Martin Freeman and Roger Lloyd Pack in the lead roles.

Tickets: The Last Laugh – Theatre at the Tabard

Dinner With Groucho

Arcola Theatre, Date: 17 November – 10 December 2022

Two men, together, on the edge of heaven. In a strange restaurant, two American giants who revere each other, Groucho Marx and T.S. Eliot, meet for dinner. Both in their own ways great defiant spirits, they create magic and anarchy, revealing secrets and sorrows. The evening is presided over by the Proprietor, who seems to control the workings of the universe. Or does she? In Dinner With Groucho, all is revealed. Or nearly so. 


The Snowman

Sadlers Wells Presents at the Peacock Theatre, Date: 19 November – 31 December 2022

Iconic family show The Snowman returns to Peacock Theatre for its 25th anniversary in the West End from Saturday 19 November – Saturday 31 December. The 25th Anniversary London Season is dedicated to creator of The Snowman, Raymond Briggs CBE 1934-2022.

Birmingham Rep’s magical stage adaptation of the much-loved picture book by Raymond Briggs CBE and the animated film directed by Dianne Jackson continues to enchant audiences of all ages.

Tickets: | 020 7863 8000

Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty

New Adventures

Sadler’ Wells Theatre, Date: 29 Nov 2022 -15 Jan 2023

Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty reawakens in 2022, celebrating 10 years since its premiere at Sadler’s Wells, when it became the fastest-selling production in the company’s history. Now established as a firm favourite in the New Adventures repertoire, the award-winning Sleeping Beauty has enchanted international audiences throughout the UK and across the globe.

Tickets: Matthew Bourne’s Sleeping Beauty – New Adventures – Sadler’s Wells Theatre (


Finborough Theatre, Date: 29 November – 21 December 2022

Two Irish Jewish brothers journey from Dublin to combat antisemitism on the streets of East London. Their Irish nationalism propels them towards Jewish nationalism in the common struggle against British Imperialism.

12:37 raises complex and controversial questions around Jewish violence, homeland and national identity in a stunning new play that is both a hard-hitting historical epic and an intimate family drama.

Tickets: | 020 7244 7439

Tales of the Brothers Grimm

Sherman Theatre, Date: 26 November – 31 December 2022

Christmas Show, Family, Feminist

Cardiff, 1913. Christmas Eve. Stevie’s mum is a Suffragette, fighting for the right to vote. But Stevie just wants to fit in. Meanwhile, in the Grimmdom, Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty and Rapunzel are waiting for their Happy Ever After. But when a storm transports Stevie to this magic land, things begin to change. None of the stories are happening like they were supposed to. Will everything end in disaster? Or can Stevie save the Grimmdom and find her own Once Upon a Time?

Tickets: Sherman Theatre | Cardiff, Wales

Beauty and the Beast

Watford Palace Theatre, Date: 3 – 31 December 2022

Panto, Christmas Show, Family

Bienvenue à Paris, where beauty, art, and love reign supreme and play host to our remixed tale of Beauty and the Beast. A theatre full of colourful characters are vying to be the next big act, when up-and-coming singer Beau falls fowl to a dastardly magician’s plot and is transformed into a hideous Beast. Only true love can save him, but will his charm offensive work its magic on the kind and beautiful Belle before time, and her patience, runs out? Or will love prevail before the last rose petal falls and seals their fate forever?


A Christmas Carol-ish by Mr. Swallow

Soho Theatre, Date: 7th Dec – 23 Dec 2022

Berk’s Nest and Nick Mohammed in association with United Agents present. Double Emmy-nominated Nick Mohammed’s acclaimed alter-ego returns this Christmas

Mr. Swallow is preparing to spread Christmas cheer as A Christmas Carol-ish kicks off at London’s Soho Theatre. Tickets are on sale now and are available from the below.


The Lion, The B!tch and the Wardrobe

A Wales Millennium Centre and Big Loop productions present at Wales Millennium Centre, Date: 8-31 December 2022

Alternative Panto, LGBTQI+ Christmas Show, Drag, Cabaret

Step into another world filled with flirty fauns, wicked wolves, a couple of beavers and the baddest b!tch of them all – Polly Amorous. She’s been rummaging deep in her wardrobe to find some presents, and what has she pulled out? Dazzling drag, sensational circus, sickening songs, bewitching burlesque, and some tinsel handcuffs! It’s always winter in Narnia, but that doesn’t mean it’s not going to get H.O.T.

Tickets: Wales Millennium Centre (


London Coliseum, Date: 15 DEC 2022 – 07 JAN 2023

The magical Christmas tradition for all the family

Over 100 dancers and musicians bring Nutcracker to life with exquisite dancing, beautiful sets and Tchaikovsky’s popular score played live by English National Ballet Philharmonic. From the sound of the orchestra tuning up, to the final bows and cheers, a trip to English National Ballet’s Nutcracker in the splendour of the London Coliseum is an unforgettable Christmas treat.

Tickets – Nutcracker – English National Ballet

Swan Lake

London Coliseum, Date: 12 – 22 JAN 2023

English National Ballet brings this timeless classic to life in this enthralling production.

Be captivated by the romance of Prince Siegfried’s love for the Swan Queen Odette and the drama of their battle against the evil sorcerer Rothbart. Experience the magnificent sight of ballerinas in white tutus moving in unison: one of ballet’s most iconic images.

Tickets – Swan Lake – English National Ballet

Festive Events at Fairfield Halls

Fairfield Halls, Date: various dates

Christmas Parties, Immersive Messiah From Lmp, Christmas Carol, Christmas With Aled And Russell, Kate Rusby At Christmas, Rick Wakeman Grumpy Christmas Tour, Wandsworth Music Winter Sounds And Of Course – The Further Adventures Of Peter Pan – The Return Of Captain Hook

Tickets: | 020 3292 0002

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December Feature: Audio-visual duo Glows releases LA, 1620-Label: Slow Dance, on 15 Sept’22 – and a photographic exhibition to coincide-Special Feature

I was sceptical when I heard that Glows were holding a photographic and illustrative exhibition to coincide with the release of their debut mixtape, LA, 1620. I’m a bit old school in that I generally prefer old fashioned releases. Why do you feel the need for bells and whistles? It gives the impression that the music doesn’t stand up on its own. Our preconceptions are best challenged however: when they released their first EP, JL Hooker Love Pleasure Forever, in 2019, they curated three nights of music at the Royal Academy of Art.

The mixtape itself is fuzzy – it is an aural timelapse of a friendship between GG Skips and Felix BH that spans the most (and least) memorable moments of adolescence. ‘Pull’, which opens after the atmospheric ‘It’s All Love’, is a four-minute introduction to the sonic mission of Glows. In melody and emotion, it borrows heavily and appropriately from Midwest emo. The sounds are expressive and colourful, but always tinged with a sense of sadness and loss: think, ‘things will never be the same again.’ In this way, it recalls Burial’s 2007 LP Untrue.

The textures and rhythms employed by Glows are far more London than Ohio, however. The music is primarily sample-based, and the samples are flipped in such a way that their artificiality is celebrated rather than concealed. Skips reflected, ‘There was a period where I didn’t like the name anymore. We wanted to change it because it was a Midwest emo type name. But there was a real reason why I chose it, and it makes sense because it can be an artificial glow.’ Glowing lights at night – one of the key signs of urban civilisation – capture excellently the solitary atmosphere and garagey drumbeats that carry the listener through LA, 1620.

Journeys – whether through time, space, an album, or an exhibition – clearly sit heavy on the minds of Skips and BH. ‘Mappings’, ‘psychogeography’, and ‘syntax’ were three of the words they used that stuck out. Asking about the images, BH said, ‘Some of them are mathematical, like this one with the cows. If you were to throw a grid on that then you can read it like sheet music almost. Or you could extract a drum pattern or a melody out of it. If you can gauge visual data points, you can translate them using whatever metric you want.’ If pushed a little further, extracting patterns out of randomness seems unusual, but it is an interesting way of prompting creativity. BH prefers databases to timelines: ‘You’re leaving people to build linkages and connections between things themselves, rather than writing the narrative in.’

Keeping with the theme of loneliness and nostalgia, Glows is more of an ongoing dialogue than a concerted effort. When he makes the music, Skips uses fragments of voice notes and sounds inspired by the textures of the images. ‘If we’re wanting to get a particular bass sound, it would be like we want it to sound like that image’, BH says, pointing to a highly textured photograph.

The images, too, are often taken with the music in mind, so the project is a chain reaction. Simultaneously, they are the documentation of not just one friendship and creative partnership, but of coming of age. ‘He was around for all the times when I made the songs,’ Skips said, ‘all the events and locations that the songs talk about.’

‘Chaser’ and ‘Postpunk’, which follow ‘Pull’, vary enough from each other that they stand alone, but meld well enough that they flow well. The title of ‘Postpunk’ lightly pokes fun at the genre which has dominated alternative guitar music for the better part of the last decade; Glows also pay tribute to the genre by building the song from a heavily downtuned sample of a guitar or bass. (I can’t tell which it is.) The vocals ­– and this is perhaps the most Burial-esque aspect – are almost always distant and muffled throughout LA, 162o. Perhaps the main umbrage I take with the mixtape is that they sound quite like King Krule’s vocals.

The first major departure from the sound of ‘Pull’ is ‘Better (Westway)’, which sounds more hopeful and toys with the sonic similarities between brass instruments and the fuzzy 8-bit sounds produced by early Gameboys. Pure longing transposed into sound. As the central fifth song in a nine-song release, it feels like a threshold between the coherent, borderline poppy first half and the more textural second half. Its follower, ‘Wake Up To The World’, loops back to the theme of journeys, using emergency sirens and green man sounds in its background.

My least favourite track on the album is ‘Hideaway’, which veers a bit too far into the King Krule/lofi hip hop matrix for my personal tastes – 6 Feet Beneath The Moon was almost a decade ago now. Fortunately, the final 60 seconds or so builds up into a brief but potent frenzy of glitching, which redeems the track’s first five minutes. The first three minutes of ‘Italian Fountain’, which is five minutes long, are very ambient before it kicks into action for the final two. This property, and its sweet, echoey harmonica in the background reminded me of Mount Kimbie more than anything else. Although I risk sounding exceedingly metropolitan, finisher ‘Cigarette Burn’ fades out the album like a ride home on the night tube after a long party.

BH said, ‘We’re really interested in freezing – how you can freeze things in different media. Preserving the first take of something, or the original voice memo. There’s information in that, which is important to preserve.’ It seems to me, however, that their preoccupation with preserving what they have indicates the sadness about what they’ve lost.

Written by Cian Kinsella 

Cian is a Classics teacher and part-time pub quizmaster living in London who is primarily interested in music but is also interested in theatre, literature, and visual arts. He is particularly intrigued by the relationship between art, criticism, and the capital forces always at play. Furthermore, he believes that subjectivity – which is ultimately at the heart of all artistic and cultural criticism – should not be concealed, but probed and perhaps even celebrated. Who decides what we like? How do they construct widely held beliefs about what is good? These are two of the questions Cian looks to address.

Cian’s latest feature OCTOBER FEATURE: Brinson: Before He Cracks The Sky and 10 Things Every Christian Hip Hop Artist Should Know – Abundant Art

Coming up!

Following this exhibition, Glows will be hosting open studio days in early 2023 where fans are invited to collaborate in merch creation, jam sessions, loop filmmaking and a ton of other creative stations. This will coincide with Glows’ double a-side release coming us this year! Dates to be announced soon!


Audio-visual duo Glows (GG skips of Domino band Sorry & RAA masters graduate Felix BH) hosted the exhibition alongside their debut mixtape release to showcase the project’s photographic/illustrative components.

A project 6 years in the making, mixtape LA, 1620 splices together and collages audio and visual artefacts from GG and Felix’s young adulthood, as they’ve grown from students to accomplished creatives. Photographic collage pieces were uploaded to a timeline site as a visual representation on the mixtape’s themes of self-sampling, looping and manipulating artefacts with a personal attachment to the duo.

recent single: Pull

full mixtape: LA, 1620

LA, 1620 released on 15th September 2022 via Slow Dance: the label and creative collective that the duo founded in high school. Through their work with Slow Dance, Glows have played a pivotal role in London’s grassroots circuit in recent years, releasing annual compilation albums for independent artists, forming improvisational group EMU alongside Felix Raman, Black Midi and Martha Skye Murphy. Previously supported by Pitchfork, Quietus and NME, Slow Dance have been described by Dazed as “the collective at the cutting edge of London’s live music scene”.




April Feature: Plants of the Qur’ān and All the Flowers Are for Me-2 ground-breaking new exhibitions at Kew Gardens, now on until 17 Sept

The Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art is a gallery that has been open since 2008 at Kew Gardens and is the world’s first display dedicated to solely Botanical Art. The gallery is currently showcasing in tandem two exhibitions, titled ‘Plants of the Qur’ān’ and ‘All the flowers are for me’ by renowned artists Sue Wickison and Anila Quayyum Agha respectively.

Even before we enter any of the gallery rooms, the hallway presents our first encounter with the paintings of Sue Wickison. Wickison is a New Zealand-based botanical Illustrator, with many of her works already part of the Shirley Sherwood collection. Plants of the Qur’ān is a six-year journey that finally culminated. This journey accounts for hundreds of hours painted to create each individual work in this series of 25 astonishingly detailed watercolour botanical paintings. This is a collaboration between artist Sue Wickison and Kew Scientist Dr. Shahina A. Ghazanfar which has found a kind of conclusion in this spectacular first-time public viewing of this series.

Plants of the Qur’an by Sue Wickison. (c) RBG Kew

The paintings are a provocation. A series that adventures from the earliest cultivator. The paintings give value to an encounter with an expansive trail, transitioning every stage from the tree, and its seedling, all the way to fruiting. The paintings are a narrative building, the lifecycle, transformation, and ripening are all in a singular frame but are never single-minded. Surveying plants across the Middle East, Wickison took on a roving location trail of Flora and Botanic from mountainous Oman to the farms of the United Arab Emirates. Working from living specimens, the colours are accounted for by pressings, all these plants are documented, and the lifespans are recorded to then be finalised and painted by her to every fine and exquisite detail.

A process visible is one that endeavours. At most times this is very much a solitary task, a loving laboured by sourcing first-hand encounters, and informed by extensive research. Thus, a metamorphosis grows into something new, into something seemingly previously unknown, but it finds its home in the scripture. A kind of telling. A re-telling. Each painting trails its own story, a detailed expression. This is very different from the geometric which is usually associated with Islamic art and architectural practices. The plants depicted, all of which are referenced in the Qur’ān, were cultivated for medicinal, a source of shade, food, and fragrance to name a few. Predominantly depicted in the Qur’ān are food plants, the series mirrors with illustrations of Tin [fig], Nakhl [date palm], Khardal [mustard], Rumman [pomegranate], Thom [garlic], and many, many more.

Plants of the Qur’an by Sue Wickison. (c) RBG Kew.

If more is desired, author Shahina A. Ghazanfar of the book Plants of Qur’ān: History and Culture, not only features Sue Wickison illustrations, but is also the first to hold such a comprehensive illustrated collection of Quranic plants. The plants are given their critical due diligence, with extensive investigative research backing cultural history, etymology, and wherein the Qur’ān they are mentioned.

All the Flowers Are for Me is a grand sculptural installation by a first-time exhibitor at Kew, Pakistani-American artist Anila Quayyum Agha. A steel and lacquer laser-cut box is suspended from the ceiling, with a light held within the sculpture to project shadows all around you. The work is lit from within, to go outward, to go towards you. The shadows follow you. The work encapsulates and takes hold of the entirety of the space, shadows paint floor to ceiling, lingering in every corner, with no surface daring to be left untouched. So much so anyone walking through and around the space becomes part of the art, part of the vision. This work is formed from a pattern that cannot be seen in its entirety anywhere in the world, only fragments of it can be seen repeated. The pattern is patched up from old historical buildings and pattern work, Islamic art, and architecture surveying old Iran, Turkey, and across South Asia. The pattern designed is the creation of the artist’s own aesthetic, their own being. Troubling the notion, that if you don’t see it, or see it not revered, – build it so it becomes more valuable. Nothing ever seems to stand alone.

All the Flowers Are for Me by Anila Quayyum Agha (c) RBG Kew.

The work lives for a space that occupies and is enamoured by so many homes across the world and now shares itself within this public space. The work takes hold within the traditions and references of Islamic art and architecture. A growing work that allows architecture to cool down and relight itself. Take from what is an offered abstraction, a refraction, – a reflection. A worlding, a civilisation, how it happens, – but how it happened nonetheless. If you say it is, it is yours, – layers of history, speak the language that nobody is alone that we truly all live for each other, – it is all but hopes for survival.

Accompanying All the Flowers Are for Me is the 2-piece work Stolen Moment Bouquet I and II, which premieres at Kew Gardens. This is a mirrored stainless steel flora wall-mounted piece, also laser-cut, matching up motifs from British textile designer William Morris and South Asian Islamic patterns. The work is made with the reflected shadow on the opposing wall and is lit from behind the wall piece itself. The work is made complete with you sharing the space with it.

Stolen Moment Bouquet by Anila Quayyum Agha. (c) RBG Kew

Anila Quayyum Agha and Sue Wickison’s works are situated perfectly at Kew Gardens. This is a soon-to-be-told-tale classic, an exhibition to be celebrated and revered. On view at the Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art, until the 17th of September 2023.

Featured Image: All the Flowers Are for Me by Anila Quayyum Agha (c) RBG Kew.

Review by Devika Pararasasinghe

Devika is currently living and working in London, by trade an artist and snake oil salesperson. Devika graduated, last September with a research MFA at Ruskin School of Art, University of Oxford.

Devika’s latest review here Review: The Ugly Duchess: Beauty and Satire in the Renaissance- The National Gallery, until 11 June – Abundant Art


Maria Devaney, Galleries and Exhibition Leader at RBG Kew says :

“It’s wonderful to be able to welcome these two pioneering artists to the Shirley Sherwood Gallery of Botanical Art. Whist their working styles vary hugely in terms of technique, both share a profound connection to nature, recognising the breadth of inspiration which can be drawn from the world around us.”

Admission to the exhibition is included in a ticket to Kew Gardens. Pre-booking online offers the best value visit.

Gallery Six will feature an exhibition of works from the Shirley Sherwood Collection, celebrating water plants following the naming of Victoria boliviana as new to science in 2022.