Exhibition: Observant by Gemma Johnson

Location: Craving Coffee, The Mill Co., South Tottenham, London

Date: Until 29th January 2017

Details: This series of work in lino, paint, and pen, explores the role of the observer living around – but not in – the insular and religious Hasidic Jewish community of Stamford Hill. Often the first reaction of outsiders is to stare, poke fun at, or judge this group’s different style of dress and way of life. I have tried to approach this project from a position of respect and have used colour and contrast to show the activity and beauty in a long-standing community that is often seen in black and white.

The works are set out in three stages: watching, hiding, and being watched. Thinking about the meaning put in the words ‘observe’ and ‘outsider’ I invite you to question the act and the ethics of watching another community. How is one treating other people when acting as a voyeur? What does it mean when someone knows they are being watched? Who is watching who?

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