Art as therapy. It sounds simple, but in most tragic circumstances people reach for pints of booze, chains of cigarettes and mind-altering substances. For photographer and artist Steph Wilson, it was the passing of her father that pushed her closer to art, and the artists around her – an experience that has since culminated in the Lemon People Collective.
“I needed a really positive project to focus on building into something good and productive,” Wilson reveals. She adds that the fleeting experience of university also played a part in the Collective’s initiation. “My incredibly talented group of friends had just finished university and no longer had an accessible communal platform to put new work up onto. Some of us needed an excuse to keep making for no other reason than the love of making.” Now the Collective stand 11-strong, with London-based artists stretching across disciplines like journalism, photography, set design, film and more.
While Wilson is wary when asked what they stand for as a group, but one thing is for sure, she says, they all work better together. “We are all individual artists, but all relate and understand each other on such a intimate level that often makes a project's construction more satisfying than the end result.”
With the Collective about to hit Hackney Wick’s Stour Space with their first immersive exhibition, opening this Thursday 22 October, for one night only, Wilson tells us to expect “Velvet labias, nude oasis', pervy peeking, headless shrines, space-age live performances, juicy mouths to spread your messages around the world, limited edition merchandise, 70s fan-club nostalgia, smoke and bubbles and more and more and more.”