The Billy Childish Studio – Group Exhibition

23 June – 11 July 2015

(In support of the Medway Open Studios, 18- 26 July 2015)

Billy Childish and a group of younger artists he has mentored at his studio in Chatham Dockyard are to exhibit as a group show in support of the Medway Open Studios & Arts Festival

 The exhibition includes paintings, drawings and monoprints by Billy Childish, Edgeworth Johnstone, Gretchen (Andrus) Andrew, Huddie Hamper and Stephan ‘Jason’ Morallee. All of whom visit the Childish studio regularly to make their own work – in what is in this day and age a unique approach to studio practice.

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In the lead up to the Medway Open Studios Festival, ‘The Billy Childish Studio Exhibition’  has been organised to raise awareness of the Festival and the opportunities available for emerging artists in Medway. The exhibition will conclude with an evening talk by Billy Childish where he will lead a conversation on the work in the show discussing his role as artist and mentor.

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The exhibition is open to the public from the 23 June to 11 July at the Sun Pier House Gallery, Chatham. The artist’s talk will take place on Saturday 11th July at 7pm and will be free to attend.

William Hamper aka Billy Childish was born in Chatham, Kent in 1959. After leaving secondary school at age 16, he worked at the Naval Dockyard in Chatham as an apprentice stonemason. Initially denied an interview to the local art school, during six months of employment at the dockyard he produced hundreds of drawings that gained him entry to St. Martin’s School of Art. Childish’s defiance to authority and his insistence on integrity and personal style above the formalities of educational requirement led to his eventual expulsion from art school in 1981. Childish then embarked on an artistic, literary, and musical odyssey exploring a broad range of worldly themes including war, history, social protest, art hate, religious philosophy, as well his own experiences of alcoholism, and the sexual abuse he suffered as a child. Over 35 years of continual creative activity Childish has gained a cult status world-wide; writing and publishing over 40 volumes of confessional poetry, 5 novels, recorded over 100 LPs, and painted hundreds of paintings.

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For enquiries about Medway Open Studios please contact Heather Burgess on 07545 642 581 or heather@medwayopenstudios.co.uk