Think of groups of artists linked to neighbourhoods. Give yourself a minute or two.
OK, what have you come up with?
The Rive Gauche, maybe; Montmartre, perhaps; Bloomsbury, quite likely; the Elephant and Castle, almost certainly not. Yet in the mid C20 the Borough Group was a collective of artists in the Elephant and Castle area. So why Borough Group, not Elephant Group you may be wondering. Well, I can’t be one hundred percent sure, but an educated guess would be that it was because they were centred at the Borough Road Polytechnic, now London South Bank University, and there was also a gang of violent hoodlums who modelled themselves closely on Chicago mobsters know as the Elephant Gang. You would not want to get the two confused. It could be nasty.
To add to the confusion, the artist at the centre of the group was David Bomberg, one of the Whitechapel Boys. All we need now is the Lavender Hill Mob to join in and we’ll have an Ealing comedy of confusion and mayhem.
Anyway, to return to the point, LSBU which has in its possession the Sarah Rose Collection comprising painting by the Borough Group, is celebrating the group’s association with the Elephant with an exhibition at 103 Borough Road about the changing face of the area and a number of events. One of these events is a walk around the neighbourhood with me.
Kick off is at eleven o’clock Saturday 25th November from 103 Borough Road. It’ll be a circular walk, and should last around an hour and a half.
For more information, follow this link.