Work starts at Barking’s ‘House for Artists’ scheme backed by Grayson Perry

PUBLISHED: 07:00 08 September 2020

Ground Breaking af the Artist's House in Barking with deputy mayor of London for culture Justine Simons

 (left). Picture: Andrew Baker

Ground Breaking af the Artist's House in Barking with deputy mayor of London for culture Justine Simons (left). Picture: Andrew Baker

© 2020 Andrew Baker

Building work at a home for artists which has won the backing of Grayson Perry is gathering pace.

The development in Linton Road, Barking has been backed by Turner Prize-winning Perry who is known for his ceramics, tapestries and cross dressing.

When built it will be home to 12 artists and features ground floor studio space for community work.

It forms part of town hall plans to support home-grown talent as well as attracting artists and craftspeople to the borough.

It has been backed by Mayor of London Sadiq Khan to the tune of £690,000.

READ MORE: Dagenham gallery offers money and space for borough’s artists

Cllr Darren Rodwell, leader of Barking and Dagenham Council, deputy Mayor for London, Justine Simons and Hadrian Garrard from Create London visited the site to mark the milestone.

Cllr Rodwell said: “The House for Artists is a truly exciting project.

“It’s a major boost to this area which already boasts a vibrant and growing artistic community and new resources like the Ice House Quarter, 360 Barking and the Dagenham Film Studios.

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“Barking and Dagenham is really taking off as one of London’s creative hotspots.”

Ms Simons said: “During these challenging times, it is more important than ever that we support our artists and so I’m delighted building work is now starting.”

Mr Garrard said: “This project sits at the heart of what we do. We are very excited to see it reach this important milestone.”

Artist Sarina Mantle, due to move in to the house, said: “It’s great that Barking is becoming more of a place that artists can not only flourish but engage and encourage others to enjoy the arts too.”

The house will be rented at below market rates in return for those living there working with artists from the borough and members of the community.

READ MORE: Barking housing project backed by Grayson Perry holds open house for potential tenants

The home’s artists were selected by a panel including Perry, who will be creating an artwork for the site.

It is being built for the council by Be First and contractors Murphy Group.

Tom Mather, construction director at Be First, said: “The House for Artists illustrates our determination not simply to build thousands of affordable homes but also culturally enrich communities too.”

Nick Fletcher UK managing director of Murphy Group, said: “We’re pleased to be working with Be First and excited to be involved in supporting the local community through the House for Artists project.”

The development is due to be completed by September 2021.

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