Gillian Lever

Thirty years with ART FIRST, London

This January ART FIRST, London is marking 30 Years with a celebratory exhibition

 11 January - 16 February 2024 at The Forge, 15 St Mary’s Walk, Lambeth.

I have shown work with ART FIRST at their various premises throughout this 30 year period and am represented in this exhibition alongside: Güler Ates, Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, Luciano Bonomi, Joni Brenner, Eileen Cooper, Helena Goldwater, Jake Harvey, Margaret Hunter, Kevin Laycock, Simon Lewty, Alex Lowery, Helen MacAlister, Bridget Macdonald, Will Maclean, Louis Maqhubela, Kate McCrickard, Jack Milroy, Mimei Thompson, Simon Morley, Karel Nel, Donald Teskey, Graeme Williams, Partou Zia.

Before moving to London, Clare Cooper (ART FIRST’s Director) ran Midlands Contemporary Art in Birmingham, a gallery in the Jewellery Quarter of the City.  She additionally organised other collaborative projects in the Midlands. I exhibited work at Midlands Contemporary Art and  one of the first projects that Clare invited me to participate in early on was an exhibition at Lichfield Cathedral as part of the 1992 Lichfield Festival.  The paintings for this exhibition were made in response to the Lichfield Gospels.

I have enjoyed thinking back over other ART FIRST collaborations that I have been involved with over the years and am feeling thankful for so many creative opportunities and connections.

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