Back Room Gallery is our unique gallery space in Holdrons Arcade. We invited artists to submit proposals responding to an Open Call, proposing week-long exhibitions in the space.

The four winners and nineteen shortlisted artists will be putting on their week long exhibitions between now and September.

The Winners

Nadine Shaban

2-8th February 2021

Nadine Shaban has been making art in some form from a young age, and around the age of 15 it started to really take over. She works across painting, sculpture and performance, manipulating found materials, often industrial and synthetic,

‘When life around me is falling apart I hold it together with whatever is in reach; glue, tape, thread. And consequently pull it to pieces when I need to. Stillness not being a satisfying state.’

Tell us about your Back Room project

‘The project starts with some drawings that were created by my brother, Karim. They were found by his support worker several years ago who at that time showed them to his daughter who was studying fine art. She started to develop them, but a few years later committed suicide. I’ve always wanted to find a way to show this work. The drawings are fascinating and have inspired me to explore new ways of bringing them to life. So the show will be a collaboration between the three of us.’

Soa J. Hwang

16-20th September 2020

Soa has been making work for ten years, but three years ago it began to turn in a new direction. She uses machines as an artistic language to paint with, and seeks to go beyond the surface of painting and explore it instead as an interface.

‘In collaboration with a machine, I want to push the boundaries of painting to go beyond itself, thereby reinventing painting as an evolutionary medium. For I’ve always believed that painting can become something else, something further, something not yet defined.’

Tell us about your Back Room project

I am thrilled to show my project < Time + Machine > in the Back Room this September and it will be an interactive multi-channel video installation. The project has begun with the question of how we can draw something as abstract as time. My primary interest lies in collaboration with a machine to draw something that wasn’t possible to draw before, and extending the experience of paintings for both artists and audiences. Read more…


19-25th January 2021

Insanity has been making work for his whole life, but moved into a studio three years ago to make things more official. He sees his work as educational as opposed to entertainment, but overall they are compositions inspired by the world, filtered through his lenses.

Tell us about your Back Room project

It is going to be a digital art exhibition providing social commentary and exploring various topics about my identity, knowledge and society.

Jerome Favre

12-18th January 2021

Jerome is a professional photographer who has been based in New Cross since 2013. His winning Back Room submission was of his photography series No One Likes Us

Tell us about your Back Room project

No One Likes Us is an immersive photo-documentary inside the world of Millwall FC, a football club preceded by a reputation of hooliganism and violence. It’s a fresh look at Millwall supporters that re-evaluates their reputation in contemporary football culture and 21st century Britain. Over the last 2 years, photographer Jérôme Favre followed Millwall FC and its fans and collected portraits and candid shots showed in this exhibition and in the No One Likes Us book.

Exhibition Programme

March 2020

11-15 Latifah A Stranack

September 2020

9-13 Abigail Brothers
16-20 Soa J. Hwang (Winner)
22-27 Emily Lazerwitz

October 2020

13-19 Megan Rea
27-2 Nov Andree Martis

November 2020

25-29 Matilda Sutton

December 2020

1-7 Manon Steyaert

January 2021

5-11 Sally Spinks
12-18 Jérôme Favre (Winner)
19-25 Sani Sani (Winner)
26-1 Feb Ines Fernandez de Cordova and Grizelda Kitching

February 2021

2-8 Nadine Shaban (Winner)
9-15 Rupert Hartley
16-22 The South London Review of Hand Dryers
23-1 Mar J Price and Tess Williams