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Drawing A Blank, May 2017
Hanna Moon

Frank LeBon, Hanna Moon to show work in London car park

Drawing A Blank will show several works from the artists alongside other names, and promises to be ‘14 mini exhibitions’ in one

Hanna Moon, Frank LeBon, Alba Hodsoll, Lotte Andersen and more come together in an exhibition titled Drawing A Blank – the second of a series that debuted last October. While most of the artists are well known within the wider boundaries of what is art, curator Ben Broome reveals that the works on show from each artist aren’t within the field of what they’re best known as. For example, LeBon, whose photography and film work is what has gained him most notoriety, is exhibiting sculpture. Andersen, an art director and founder of the currently dormant London party Maxilla, will present a film from her “Dance Therapy” performance. Whereas Moon, whose work is more likely to be found in fashion magazines, will see her photography in physical form and hung on a wall.

Taking place in a south east London car park, Broome promises a bay to each artist – which means, in his words, “14 mini exhibitions”, and adds that this show isn’t for collectors or critics, but for a bunch of mates. Opening on 17 May, launch night will also see performances from James Massiah and NIPAH, amongst others. Below Broom tells us what to expect.

How did you go about curating this set of artists? Some names were also involved last time but please do tell us about what you were thinking about or looking for when choosing this list?

Ben Broome: Almost all of the artists came to exhibit in quite an organic way – many are friends or friends of friends. My personal taste and the aesthetics of the art is the deciding factor in choosing the artists but they're often brought to my attention when someone says 'you should check out so and so'. We're all united by our working practices. Everyone seems to be spinning lots of plates, trying to work full-time jobs or finish degrees alongside art making.

Many of the exhibitors wouldn't call themselves professional artists and instead are making a name for themselves in other industries. Hanna Moon is a new addition to Drawing A Blank and is best known for her fashion photography – you would normally see her photography on a screen or in the pages of a magazine. By exhibiting physical prints of her photographs hung on a wall and in an exhibition setting I'd like to think that both the artist and the viewer may see them differently.

What caught your eye about the works you’re including from each – do you start by choosing the artist or the work?

Ben Broome: I think an artist will produce more interesting work in reaction to an exhibition space, the other artists involved or the ideas behind the exhibition so I'd definitely start by choosing the artist. As a curator, I think you have to have a degree of faith in your artists to come up with the goods!

How do the works interact with one-another – are they standalone or is there a common thread to them all?

Ben Broome: It was pointed out to me that my approach to the curation of this exhibition is a little like an art fair (albeit a far cry from canapés and chardonnay) – the bays of the carpark create natural partitions like a booth at a fair. Each artist has a section of the bay to exhibit their works so I think it'll end up as 14 mini solo shows under one roof. 

Tell us about the space you’ve chosen. You mention it “hardly lends itself to an art exhibition” in the press release – is there a dialogue between the space and the works?

Ben Broome: The space is an underground carpark that, until recently, had been closed since the 80s. PemPeople and Southwark Council are doing great work to re-develop it into a badly needed communal space for local residents. It's a little ramshackle at the moment but that's the way I like it. In April I left my job of fours years at a central London gallery so I've had enough of white walls. 

When I first found the carpark I was a little nervous pitching my idea to some of the artists I hadn't worked with before. I'm lucky that they all have a good imagination and could see my vision. I had to remind myself that we're doing this for ourselves and our friends – not for collectors or critics. If we like the space there's a good chance everyone else will.

Drawing A Blank will run at Ledbury Garages in SE15 from 17 – 21 May