Knitted Bike by Olek

Mr. Penfold, Malarky

First glance at this wall and I saw a giant Malarky and Mr. Penfold collaboration. And then I saw the bike. It may have been there for quite some time now (I’m guessing it has), but this is the first time since I’ve been back in London that I’ve walked down this way (Sclater Street in Tower Hamlets) so I was excited to have stumbled upon it.

Knitted Bike!

Here’s a closer photo of the bike, which is a piece by Olek, a Polish artist whose full name is Agata Oleksiak. She lives and works in NYC, so if you’re reading this from across the pond, keep your eyes open because she does quite a few shows. And when Olek knits, she goes all out making massive sculpture pieces covering pianos, cars, the giant bull on Wall Street and a whole host of other things that must have taken her absolutely ages. She even knitted a tent (though I doubt it’s waterproof…). Here’s a link if you’re looking for a bit more procrastination ūüėČ

And while I’m talking about bikes, if you’re into it, the London Bike Show is on now through the weekend.

Also, if you spot any more Olek pieces around London, do tell because I’m loving it.

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London Art Spot: Agata Bartoszcze

 
Agata Bartoszcze, is a photographer, artist and designer living between London and her native Poland. However, her photography takes her around the globe. Her work has featured in numerous publications, most recently Photolife magazine. Her exhibition, ‚ÄúVernisage ‚Äď Women by Agata Bartoszcze‚ÄĚ at The Bowler pub in Farringdon, is the first public exhibition of her work. It concerns the complex delicacies of the female form and spirit.¬†¬†

“Rather then thinking of myself a photographer, I instead think of myself as a traveller and a teller of stories,” Agata said. “My travels are part of a life journey. I explore nature, cities and objects but also human behaviour, thoughts and feelings. I collect moments and transform them into images. Images which complete my stories. This thinking has led me to photograph almost everything and tell stories of unforgettable places, convey the fairy tales of the objects, children’s dreams, adult dramas or women’s desires. Lives of ordinary people play the main role in my stories and my challenge is the endeavour of revealing a layer of honesty and true thoughts behind the humans captured on film.”¬†¬†

For this week’s London Art Spot, Agata tells us about her first public exhibition in London, the story of a chinese woman with peanuts and shares some of her stunning photographs from all over the world.¬†
 

LLO: How did you choose which photographs to include in your first public exhibtion and are you happy with the outcome?
AB:
‚ÄúLovely female shapes are terrible complicators of the difficulties and dangers of this earthly life, especially for their owners.‚ÄĚ ~George du Maurier

Women are inspiring, intriguing and beautiful. Their minds are like a riddle and feelings like a sea. Because I am one of them. The theme suits its surroundings and the relaxed atmosphere of The Bowler pub. Very positive outcome.

LLO: Has your approach to photography changed since moving to London?
AB:
I’ve always loved photography, so this hasn’t changed. I think I’ve grown with all what I’ve experienced in London.

LLO: Share a photo with a great story behind it and tell us about it.
AB:
Chinese woman with peanuts. Very old lady wanted to sell us some peanuts. We really didn’t want to eat them, but she insisted, started being very annoying even violent. She appeared to be strong. I thought this is a fantastic opportunity for a great shot.

 

LLO: Your photos from Mongolia are stunning. What challenges did you face in order to get the perfect shot?
AB:
I think I am a good observer and sometimes very lucky, especially with the landscapes. Sometimes you have to wait hours to get the best shot, sometimes you are right there, like it was waiting for you.

To approach people is a different story and very individual I would say. Sometimes I have to hide and take a shot secretly, sometimes I build invisible connection and other times I behave bravely and don’t ask even if I know I shouldn’t photograph the person.

LLO: Take us behind the scenes and describe your favourite photoshoot so far.
AB:
 I love traveling, so relaxing and taking photographs is so natural and pleasurable for me.

One of the best ones was on the Trassiberian train, when I saw a little Mongolian girl, very shy at the beginning of our photoshoot. After a while she became a real model, very confident and relaxed, we both enjoyed it withought saying a single word.

LLO: What sort of equipment do you have in your collection?
AB:
It is not equipment which makes you a photographer. I haven’t got a fancy camera or lenses, but I have a vision.

LLO: Are there any London-based photographers you really admire?
AB:
Matt Stuart. Absolutely honest photographer. I admire him for his patience and optimism.

LLO: What are you working on next?
AB:
Any subject is a challenge. As I mentioned before, photography is my journey, I try to see beauty in everything and then tell these transformed into images stories.

Thanks Agata! 

For more of Agata’s work, have a look at her Flickr page.

For more London Art Spot interviews, click here. 

Photography Contest! Win a pair of Tickets to Globe Media Gala

I’ve got a pair of hot tickets to give away. They are for¬†the exclusive, invite-only, international fashion show and¬†launch party for¬†a Globe Media¬†pop-up exhibition at the newly re-opened Assembly Hall in Islington on April 1.

Who wants them?  

Since you know I love photos of London, the tickets will be given away to the winner of a photography contest. As you can read in the press release below, this four-day event is about celebrating the cultural voices of countries seen in a negative light through the arts. This contest will show off London, of course.

To enter: submit one photo (.jpeg) of London showing a unappealing aspect of life or a part of the city itself that is usually seen in a negative light photographed in a positive way. Along with the photo, send a 3-4 sentence explanation of your choice and your full name.  Photographs must be your own.

Send your submission to littlelondonobservationist@hotmail.co.uk.

DEADLINE: March 30, 2010, 8pm GMT

The winner will receive a pair of tickets to the event below and the top five photos will be featured in a post at the beginning of April on this blog.

*****

CHARITY POP-UP EXHIBITION/FILM WEEKEND/LUXURY RAFFLE & FASHION SHOW for GLOBE MEDIA.
LAUNCH PARTY on 1st APRIL, 6-9pm, with FASHION SHOW, LIVE ENTERTAINMENT & REFRESHMENTS for pop-up exhibition and film screenings courtesy of ICA Films, April 2nd-4th
WHERE: The newly re-opened ASSEMBLY HALL, UPPER STREET, ISLINGTON, N1 2UD

Live dance, music & high end fashion show (stylist from Italian Vogue); participating designers include: Kali Arulpragasa of Superfertile (UK/Sri Lanka) – that’s M.I.A.’s sister, Denny Wirawan (Indonesia), Stephen Pelger (Romania), Ananya (London-based Indian), Akosua (London-based South African), Osman Yousefzada (London-based with Afghani heritage), Telfar, Turkmen Gallery,¬†Erickson Beamon, Pippa Small…and more.

Celebrating the cultural voices of countries often seen in negative light (everywhere from Somalia to Poland, Eritrea to Iraq), Globe Media is showcasing stories about the good things left behind all made by a multi-faceted, creative group of refugees and first generation British citizens. This pop-up exhibition holds a magazine, short films, pictures, crafts, exhibits and audio. Films screening on rotation include I is for India and Gypsy Caravan, courtesy of ICA Films.

The project is called Globe Media, a product of Springboard Media, a London-based charity which sits under the umbrella of long-established and respected not-for-profit organisation, CSV. The Globe Media project is funded by the Transformation Fund. The aim has been to give education in media to those either with backgrounds as journalists or creatives internationally, or to those wishing to be empowered by storytelling and looking for ways forward through their transit in life. A charity raffle (donations wilfully accepted!!!) has some great prizes, and proceeds are going to Broken Silence, helping sickle cell.