A major cultural event is set to put Croydon on the map this September as the town commemorates Andy Warhol, 30 years after the artist’s death.
Croydon’s award-winning RISEgallery is delivering a groundbreaking programme of FREE events throughout the month, under the theme ‘Warhol Croydon’, as a tribute to the life and work of one of the biggest names in 20th century art.
Among the highlights will be:
• A unique street exhibition of giant artworks curated by RISEgallery and the artist Dotmasters, featuring tributes to Warhol by some of today’s leading artists, which will be displayed on prominent buildings throughout the town centre and lit up at night.
• Free guided tours of the cutting-edge exhibition twice daily throughout the month.
• A free exhibition of original Andy Warhol artworks hosted in the RISEgallery, in St George’s Walk, the heart of Croydon’s cultural quarter.
• A series of free Warhol film and documentary screenings, plus talks and lectures that will include international speakers from around the world.
• Late-night openings of the RISEgallery
• A host of family-friendly activities planned with support from the local community for each week of the event, appealing to all ages.
Warhol Croydon is the latest initiative of the RISEgallery which has previously brought exhibitions of work to Croydon by renowned artists Damien Hirst and Banksy. The event has Croydon Council and Croydon Business Improvement District (Croydon BID) as its headline sponsors and is aimed at further enhancing Croydon’s burgeoning cultural reputation as well as bringing a welcome boost to the local economy through increased visitors.
Kevin Zuchowski-Morrison, founder of the RISEgallery, said: “Few names in the world of art are more evocative than that of Andy Warhol, who continues to attract record-breaking numbers of visitors to exhibitions of his work around the world.
“We expect 100,000 visitors throughout the month as Croydon’s reputation as one of London’s cultural epicentres continues to grow. Warhol’s work has attracted huge numbers of people to exhibitions in the likes of Sydney, Liverpool and Hull, this year’s UK City of Culture and we are hosting the only UK event marking the 30th anniversary of his passing.”
Kevin believes displaying tributes by some of the highest-profile modern artists throughout the town will further enhance the reputation of a borough in which the local authority has stressed its commitment to putting culture at the core of its mission to create a sense of place.
“This is a real coup for Croydon and we look forward to welcoming the thousands of visitors who will want to see and be inspired by this groundbreaking project.
“As a council we have been committed to putting culture at the heart of everything we do and this is another example of the exciting way in which our cultural scene is evolving. Hosting events like this really helps to keep Croydon on the map and generate more positive perceptions which in turn help to encourage even greater investment in our borough.”
Councillor Tony Newman, leader of the council
Paula Murray, creative director, Croydon Council, added: “It is really exciting that we have the support of world-renowned artists who will use Croydon town centre to showcase their own Andy Warhol-inspired pieces of work.
“It will bring these artists and Warhol himself to a whole new audience, with a free large-scale exhibition of this nature helping to make art accessible for anyone. It would be wonderful if this could inspire the Warhols of the future.”
Matthew Sims, chief executive of Croydon BID, said: “As a headline sponsor of Andy Warhol month in Croydon, we are thrilled to be closely associated with bringing one of the biggest names in visual arts to Croydon for what promises to be a spectacular series of events and exhibitions that will go a long way towards altering perceptions of our town and strengthening its growing cultural reputation.
“Not only will the wide programme of planned events and activities attract thousands of additional visitors into town, they will also serve to highlight the many exciting developments taking place here and underline Croydon’s economic renaissance.”
All events are FREE for everyone. For further information visit: www.warholcroydon.co.uk (full details available at the start of August)