The E17 Art Trail is finished. Professional and inclusive it defines the present-day Walthamstow like no other event, and lasting 16 days this year it is the longest celebration of all things Walthamstow. To Morag and Laura and Cris and all others involved in making it happen a big thank you.
The neural network of artists and venues provided a huge sense of community. The image of Walthamstow map, as drawn in the guide, and indeed as portrayed in the E17 Neighbourhood Quilt by Catherine West of Significant Seams, makes it look like a cosy self-sufficient island. These are two beautiful feelings to have when you’re on a bicycle: you can easily span it all on a bike, pedal from shore to shore, and trace the neural network of this wonderful brain, this wonderful imagination and creativity we have around us.
The feelings accompanied us as we rode today too. They are important because in the ever-shrinking world distances are ever-increasing, and in our ever-expanding city we need a greater sense of location, our own meaningful centre. Bikes give it to those who use them, and E17 Art Trail gives it to Walthamstow.
We started under a grey sky so we got some Mexican sun and guacamole at venue 71, Cleveland Park Art.
We got some cool golden calling cards printed by Matt McKenzie at Paekakariki Press, and admired Kate Hardy’s prints which adorn Paekakariki’s publications.
Meanwhile upstairs… at Mitre Studios we were greeted by a creation of Esther Neslen, who showed us around.
The Onion Cutters’ Club was all about embroidered quips and poetic sewing.
Matt Richards illustrated his street corner with music-inspired digital images.
When you ride a bike in London it doesn’t seem so big. Louiz Kirkebjerg-Nielsen also seems to manage the Leviathan in her prints. She pins its parts down with the imagination of a chess player and a exactness of a butterfly collector.
Far from being lost in the woods and stoically philosophical, Walden Studios are bang in the middle of Walthamstow…
and on the money!
We rode through Wingfield Road with a strange sensation…
of being looked at from behind the glass.
The feeling of weirdness continued at Beyca Retro’s exhibition of Mat Lenik’s WeirdlingThings, harmonizing well with ground coffee.
After a visit to the Makers’ Yard, a fabulous work space in Shernhall Street, we visited Mr Bliss
and his Mirrors of Quirky Bliss.
And after a much-needed coffee-and-cake at Arts and Crusts we wound up at Wadham Lodge where we drank fizz for the Chapel End Arts and Crafts Association
Walthamstow Dad gave us local money, courtesy of the Bank of Walthamstow, to drink to local economy.