2019/20 St Margaret's House Exhibition Programme

  • Haja Fanta

The Gallery Cafe first opened its doors in 2006 and is St Margaret’s House’s largest in-house community project. As well as offering great vegan food and drink the cafe also hosts an exciting programme of monthly art exhibitions from up-and-coming artists, managed by myself the curator. Through our exhibitions, I champion the work of new artists from the community, that support the ethos of St Margaret’s House and use their practice to push boundaries, by inviting them to exhibit their work with the cafe. Exhibitions lend themselves as great homes for stories and experiences to be shared, they are an invitation into the mind and space of an artist. Guided by my daily interactions and the desire of making art accessible, I primarily use exhibitions as a mechanism to bring attention to themes that aren’t typically explored and people that aren’t given the platforms to allow their voices to reach beyond their immediate circles. I also enjoy utilising exhibitions as a tool to document life as it is happening, so that these themes and people can be a part of history that future generations can look to. I have used the Cafe Gallery as a tool to engage with the local community, by bringing art to their doorsteps in a non-traditional and communal setting. Communicating the stories of the east London community in a language that is familiar through different mediums of visual art, is something that the exhibitions at the Cafe Gallery offer.