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The Dark Side @ Boomer Gallery

Just down the road from London Bridge station and up a set of stairs lies Boomer Gallery. It’s an upstairs gallery that turns into a hive of activity when an exhibition is on, with extra walls going up and every available wall space covered with artworks – think the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition but smaller and more densely packed. 

All artists submitted works based loosely around the theme of exploring a dark side – whether that be represented in their work or channelling negative emotions into the positive output of creating artwork, questioning whether the trope of the tortured artist still exists today or whether it can be turned into something altogether more healthy. 

With 150 artists in the exhibition there’s a wide variety of styles from abstract art to portraits, painting to photography, sculpture to street art. It allows for the surreal figurative painting of Clare Schouten to hang alongside the abstract intensity of Mahlon Todd Williams, and John E. Creigan’s sparing photography of abandoned coffee cups on a counter to be in the same show as Nina Tokhtaman Valetova’s painting packed with symbolism.

The artists here draw inspiration from varied aspects of life – street scenes and landscapes, dreams and real life, strangers and people close to the artist. Plus each artist can call upon their unique life experiences such as photorealist painter Kevin Devonport who learned to paint while serving a prison sentence, or Rachel Clarke who sculpts and only recently realised she has aphantasia and therefore cannot create an image in her mind’s eye. 

The Dark Side has now closed but the concept of the gallery is to have a schedule of regular short-run exhibitions giving emerging and established artists plenty of opportunities to showcase their works in the first floor space. 

The full list of participating artists were Vanessa Wenwieser, John Gorman, Teresa Husarska, Su Barikan, Romina Batino-Stiffler, Se Fenger, Junara Greco, Jing Qiu, Kelly McCallum, Mahlon Todd Williams, Liubov Naleskina, Dr. Shirley Yeung, Yulia Krupenko (Alisevich), Imani McCray, Anna Kornilina, Silke Wolff, Olga Shevchenko, Angelika K. Eichler, Daria Ryzhova, Judith Walker, Olasumbo Wright, Aga Cela, Christine Oram, Natasha Lakic, Clare Schouten, Mika Stetsovski, Evgeniia Zorina, Matthew da Silva, Khalid Balogun, John E. Creigan, Ken Ramirez, Fengmer, Nina Tokhtaman Valetova, Tony J. Smith, Harvey Johnson, Kip Harris, Mihaela Rogova, Melanie Blystone, Ruby Chroma, Natrosity, Daniel Sullivan, Maurizio Guadagnoli, Emanuela Harris-Sintamarian, Giorgos Nicolaou, Anna Koenig, Glen Welford, Marcela Diaz, Car Act Air, Dharitri Kalita, Courtney Ann Riggs, Usoa Garcia, Grace Gershinson, Diana Garofalo, Tairan Hao, Kevin Fitzgerald, Rytis Gervickas, Jordie Thomas, Tommi Viitala, Rachel Clarke, Rekate Chu, Elizabeth Soper, Willa Bury, Sophie Dunér, Keyi Liu, Kevin Devonport, Neil Turner, Natalia Synegina, Una d’Aragona, Lisa Kreuziger, Zahra Tharani, Lize Krüger, Izabela Apana?ska, Hong Sunmi, Romana Ashraf, Moritz Mathia, Noctife, Anna Vallat, Kafele Tudor-Rosa, Pamela Woods, Elena Turner, Livia Doreto, Erin Wenke, Lea Bosch, Fred Brashear Jr, Paddy Hornby, Juliette Conin, Richard, Lucia Babjakova, Zhen Henry Yuan, Olga Lorenz, Karan Kalha, Miciah Imla Hadnot, Nadezhda Valentinovna Sidorova, Yiming Tang, Hymen, Guillermo Rodríguez, Suparna Ghosh, Brad Tutt, Huyen Phan, Michael Goerner, John Scott Petty, Greta O’Brien, Martin White, Haz-ié, Michael Ansong Sarfo, Yastika Sethi, Judith Chow, Rafael C M Serrano, Joanne Chase-Mattillo, Natalia Harrold, James Corey, Elena Martin Arizmendi, AJ Schlechten, Owen Meza-Vandermeer, Matthew Huggett, Mike (ReBorneArt), Lauren Bickerdike, LOKKI, Fengfeng Li, Luca Magos, Tosin Iwayemi, Elena Cruz, Joshua Masters, Kiera Rooney, Mitch Sprung, Hanzhi Zhong, Delaney Reynolds

Boomer Gallery has a regular schedule of exhibitions and is located at 150 Tooley Street.



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Catriona Gallagher is a visual artist based between Northumberland (UK), and Athens (Greece). Her work unfolds poetical stories and critical observations […]

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