'So many characters': Lockdown portraits on display

Friends Sian and Desree

Friends Sian and Desree - Credit: Justine Roland-Cal

An exhibition of lockdown portraits is on display on the outside railings of Chats Palace community arts centre in Homerton until the end of the month.

The exhibition, In My Block, is by Hackney artist and photographer Justine Roland-Cal.

The photographs, which can be seen next to Homerton Hospital, capture Justine's fellow residents outside in the communal garden at Welshpool House, near Broadway Market.

Taken last year, each portrait has a story to tell, with subjects including young rapper Sho Snipez, friends Sian and Desree, and the building’s concierge, Ray.

Rapper Sho Snipez

Rapper Sho Snipez - Credit: Justine Roland-Cal

“Culturally, there's a lot of different people here. I just think it's part of London. I really enjoy the fact that so many nationalities are in this building. It's just a really interesting thing,” said Justine.


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“There’s something about how many different characters and families and communities live in these places, and Grenfell brought that out a lot, I think. It was heart wrenching. There was something that stayed in my mind about it, about community and people living in these places, that are sometimes gentrified areas."

Justine is hoping to expand the series to indoor portraits once lockdown lifts, with an indoor exhibition to follow.

Artist Justine Roland-Cal

Artist Justine Roland-Cal - Credit: Justine Roland-Cal


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