If you want to know about a city, you ask its inhabitants and those who work in it. We’ve gone one step further however. We’ve asked the talented Southwark-based artists who are exhibiting at our current exhibition – London Bridge Hotel OPEN 3: Urban Nature, to explain how London and in particular, the Borough of Southwark, continually inspires them and their artistic endeavours and how visitors might tap into this important city of culture. Greg Becker shares his thoughts with us.
How does living or working in Southwark inspire your artworks?
Everyday, from my loft studio window I look out across Southwark and see the distant spire of the Shard. Sometimes pale green, sometimes slate blue or dazzling white. At night twinkling lights transform the city into a fairytale world. Artists generally finds fuel for their imagination where ever they are but Southwark has a wonderful variety of inspiring subject matter. An artist could spend their whole life painting just this part of London and never get bored, London has so much depth.
What attraction or aspect of Southwark would you recommend to a visiting tourist?
Dulwich, where I live and paint about has great parks and a fascinating array of Victorian, Edwardian and mid 20th century houses, yet a short journey away at Southwark’s northern tip you enter an almost sci fi world of glass and steel, juxtaposed with beautifully preserved historic buildings, creating a mix that I find both surreal and intoxicating.
Does the long history of the Borough have any legacy bearing on your work, given South of the River was always the haunt of the artistic community?
After 40 years of living and working here as an artist, it still astonishes me. In that time I’ve painted its people, buildings and parks many times.
How important, as an artist, is it to be in the capital?
As well as a depth of history, London also has a depth of artistic talent which needs good opportunities to be seen and appreciated.
Do exhibitions such as London Bridge Hotel OPEN 3: Urban Nature help to publicize your work/help your artistic CV?
I’ve always believed its important for artists to show work in their local area and so being able to have a painting in the London Bridge Hotel Open exhibition has been very encouraging.
Greg is exhibiting his acrylic artwork, Dawson’s Heights in London Bridge Hotel OPEN3: Urban Nature, located on a pillar close to Quarter Bar & Lounge’s entrance:
Acrylic on panel
35 cm x 27 cm
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