Just as the seven year London itch was kicking in and I was thinking it might be time to move from this big city, the Leytonstone Arts Trail has finally come along and brought back my faith. I LOVE living on the borders of Leyton and Leytonstone, a place where the arts community is thriving and conversation and diversity are at the heart of the Waltham Forest borough. So many likeminded people in one place has led to a revolution of music, design and everyone is involved in the process - I don't see gentrification ever taking hold here as it's genuinely all about the locals and the businesses they have to offer.
The trail itself is full of a variety of work and I was super lucky to explore most of it yesterday and run a little blog tour earlier on today. It's just so damn great to meet fellow creatives! Illustration, paintings, sculpture, live art and history tours - the work of over 150 artists featured in exhibitions, open studios and other events - you've gotta believe that there is a style for everyone. Running until the 10th July, there's still a week of listings and a chance to see the work on offer, so if you're in East London or like the sound of visiting next weekend here are a few of my recommended venues and details on the artists exhibiting.
Sprankenstein, Familiar Ink and Rosie Gainsborough at All You Read Is Love
A collection of eclectic designers under one very eclectic roof. Start off the trail with a coffee and soak up the creative culture of All You Read Is Love. No company needed, as a good book from the collection will do the job and there's plenty of interesting conversations to eavesdrop in on from the local creative crowd.
All You Read Is Love, 877 High Road, Leytonstone, E11 1HR
Anna Stiles at The Wild Goose Bakery
Can't visit this one without moving on from coffee to a slice of cake (personal favourite being the apple crumble muffin). Illustrator Anna Stiles has taken over The Wild Goose with her geometric mobiles and intricate portraits. Having met Anna at her private view on Saturday I'm hoping to feature her in someway soon so watch this space and let me know how you'd like me to showcase her.
The Wild Goose Bakery, 654 High Road, Leytonstone, E11 3AA
Two for Joy Art at Laura Lea Design
An EJP favourite, Laura Lea Design has once again set the standard with a an exhibition from Stacey Williamson-Michie aka Two for Joy Art. Stacey has created a series of works titled 'The Day The Clock Stood Still' exploring the moments when life changes and nothing will ever be the same. These beautiful paper cuts tell the story oh so well and I advise you take a close look for all of the little details that really support the theme - snaps to anyone that can tell me what may have just been the decisive factor to this series being created!
1 Station Forecourt, Church Lane, E11 1HE
Live drawing from Carne Griffiths in a residential house
Oh how I wish I had offered up my own abode to the trail as the lucky residents of 135 Mornington Road are literally getting a bespoke piece of work in their home and we'll never see anything like it again. I'm all for the live artwork and Carne Griffiths is so far doing a remarkable job on this family home. Be sure to visit it this Saturday to see the mural completed.
135 Mornington Road, E11 1HE
St John the Baptist Church
St John the Baptist Church has a large series of alternate works hidden amongst its pews and surrounding walls. If you ever wondered what embroidered shopping lists looked like, Brigitte Mierau has got you covered. There's also plenty of other bits going on for the coinciding Leytonstone Festival so go and have a browse and see what you find.
St John the Baptist Church, High Road, Leytonstone, E11 1HH
Ruth Craddock and Mia Warner at The Northcote Arms
As well as work from Ruth Craddock and Mia Warner, my lovely little local is also hosting live drag queen drawing on Tuesday 5th (3pm-7pm) and Sunday 10th (6.30pm-10pm). Expect to be joined by the Orient fans in what happens to be the quirkiest pub in Leyton and don't eat beforehand as the street food on offer is always to die for.
Northcote Arms, 110 Grove Green Road, E11 4EL
The London Green at The Wanstead Tap
I'll admit it's a little further out and I'm personally saving this visit for a mid-week drink but I had to include The London Green by Helen Green- she's a geometric goddess and right up my street! All of her patterns are drawn freehand and she has quite the little collection so it's not to be missed. I'm also buzzing to try the selection of craft beers The Wanstead Tap have on offer as I've heard the selection is rather grand.
Arch 352, Winchelsea Road, E7 0AQ