An old public toilet in a Camberwell park has been transformed into a feminist art gallery.
The Bower, opened by Joyce Cronin and Louise Bailey, is housed in a former public loo in Brunswick Park which sat derelict for 20 years, and a nearby park keeper’s hut.
The art gallery and publications studio will host a year-long programme of women artists and writers drawing on the gallery’s location and context, as well as feminist and socio-political themes.
It will expand out into the surrounding park in the form of installations, projection and sculptures, and the adjoining café will explore the concepts of food and hospitality within a feminist practice.
The space, which is one of London’s smallest art galleries at fifteen square metres, takes its name from the phrase meaning “a pleasant shady place under trees” and “a woman’s private room”.
The Bower will also incorporate a book shop and produce books on site by Publication Studio London.
The debut exhibition at the gallery is Frances Scott’s Diviner which takes its title from a short documentary Diviner Water in Luppitt (1976), housed in the South West Film and Television Archive in Plymouth.
“Diviner” is a term originating from the 15th century to describe a person who might use special powers to predict future events, or for someone who seeks out water under the ground with the use of a divining or dowsing rod.
The gallery was launched with crowdfunding and Arts Council funding.
Frances Scott: Diviner will be open from June 21 to July 22 Wednesday to Sunday 12-5pm at The Bower, Brunswick Park, Camberwell, SE5 7RH.
An in-conversation event with Frances Scott, Chu-Li Shewring and Karen Di Franco will take place on July 17.
For more information, visit: http://www.thebower.org.uk/