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Willesden gallery

Portals to Willesden

Emma Barnie

22 – 26 January

Portals Willesden Green Gallery flyerPortals to Willesden is an exhibition hatched from a two week artist residency at the Gallery
at Willesden Green Library. The daily workshops focused on the library both physically and
conceptually, and the work created by participants is featured as a central part of this
exhibition. These sessions were a great way to discover Willesden through people who have
shared their past stories, experiences and future dreams.

The exhibition contains twelve brand new artworks of NW10 that have been created during
the residency. The illustrative designs have been influenced by Brent Museum and archives;
as well as local industry, popular culture and imagination. Outside the gallery window on
Grange Road are three sets of sonic portals, two of which connect together, the other
remains a mystery. The exhibition taps into the fantastical side of Willesden Green and its

These local images have been weaved together with some very recent pieces from where
the artist lives in south east London.

The Artist

Barnie is a visual artist working in illustration, documentary and installation. Her interests lie
in heritage, culture and socio-politics presented with a playful twist. Born and raised by the
mysterious Loch Ness she is now digging deep into the murky depths of SE and NW
London. Currently she is focusing on exploring and depicting London based on archives
fused with imagination to create surreal cityscapes.

She has worked with local councils and arts festivals in London to create site specific
installations and street art. Recent projects have provided playful twists on literary
references to historic locals for Greenwich Heritage Arts, and creating and producing murals
to commemorate former local residents H G Wells in Sutton and Charles Dickens in New
Cross, respectively.

Barnie has directed and produced short documentary films which have been screened at
Edinburgh International Film Festival and won awards at Open City Docs Fest. She has also
created installations for festivals including Boomtown and Shambala.