Back in the early 1980s I did a silkscreen printing course at Camden arts Centre, then I went again as a visitor a few times in from the mid 90s up to several years ago and the place was much the same.
But a visit the other day had me confused because it was totally different as it has been extended at the back to form two lovely new galleries with a revamped café and a bookshop.
In the main gallery with its high vaulted ceiling there was work by Japanese artist Yuko Mohri, ‘Voluta’, whose audio-spatial composition reveals the interconnectedness of man-made and natural processes, apparently.
This is not really my thing, as clever and artistic as it may be, but what really got me was some fish in a little tank where the water was very green and really should have been changed.
In galleries 1 and 2 was an exhibition by Peter Fraser, ‘Mathematics’, a photographer whose work I’ve never seen. But photography I can’t recall seeing there on previous visits so it was quite a revelation to see some on the walls.
Reflecting on the idea that time, space, and everything within it, can be described mathematically; her brings together a series of photographs of seemingly disparate and unrelated objects and encounters – including still lifes, landscapes and portraiture.
Maybe, but many of them were not particularly good photography to me and I’m always baffled by any artist/photographer who can’t be bothered to title their work. However it redeemed itself for me by showing a few really lovely works, and I guess that’s as good as it would get for any artist; I know the feeling well, some you win some you don’t.
As it was a quiet time, a lovely Italian volunteer lady by the name of Sara made it a really nice visit to this gallery as she walked around with me and we just talked about it. I told her about the traditional composition rule of thirds which first she didn’t understand but as soon as I pointed it out on a couple of the pictures and where it was absent on others she then understood completely.
The visit was enhanced by the café, and as it was a glorious day, sitting outside in the interesting sloping garden with a cup of tea, it could have been anywhere but the roar of the traffic was always there.
This is somewhere I will visit again now that photography is on show; I shall see what else they put on as photography exhibitions always interest me being one myself. I can learn from anybody, and do, I know I’ll never stop learning.
All in all, some nice spacious galleries and a very good place to view interesting exhibitions and have a tea/coffee in a pleasant garden on the corner of Finchley Road and Arkwright Road.