What started as an iconic street art project in Paris has spread to Shanghai, and now, London. And the progenitor behind this infectious spread of talent is Magda Danysz – an art dealer and owner of several art galleries, who curates the London Project herself.
Magda is no stranger to these transient artistic ventures. She oversaw the “Les Bains Douches” project in 2013 – by turning the dilapidated Les Bains nightclub in Paris into a hub of creativity. And in 2014, we saw the equivalent in Shanghai as the “Look Through” project that used the notable Bund18 building. And now, in 2015, this movement is plunged into London.
Located in Charlotte Street within Fitzrovia, the MD Gallery is a pop-up ‘100 day’ project that opened on the 14th of May. With a mission of aiming to be as dynamic as possible, we see a surplus of different talents and a site that is constantly evolving.
The gallery makes use of two very different spaces. Upstairs is quite the traditional floor –showcasing a mix of street art and photography. With household street artist names such as Blek Le Rat, Futura and L’Atlas, the gallery is no stranger to prestige.
The downstairs space is an area that they refer to as the ‘artists residency.’ And it’s exactly that. Providing a temporary home for artists of the original MD gallery (and also London artists too), it is certainly one of the most striking parts of the entire building.
One extremely intriguing aspect of this project was the resourcefulness of these resident artists. Remi Rough and YZ (pronounced ‘eyes’) both reused remnants of the old building to create their standalone pieces. Segments of the boarded up ceilings, wooden beams and other such withered parts of the gallery were used to make up their work. As the picture below shows, French artist YZ carved the wooden ceiling boards (that came with the derelict site) into archways, which formed the canvas for her tenderly poignant work.
And this only to speak of the gallery and the artist’s ingenuity to date. We have yet to see what they will do with the solitary cinema on the bottom floor. But I speak for everybody who has witnessed this project when I say: we cannot wait.
Images courtesy of the Magda Danysz gallery