The Aylesbury Estate – Behind the Brutal Facade

Staff Reporter (05 October, 2020)

It is a transformative event redefining a landscape only associated by outsiders with poverty, depravation and decay


To mark the 12th and final anniversary of The Creation Trust, the charity that works with the residents of The Aylesbury Estate, once labelled one of the most notorious estate in the UK, a series of intimate photographic portraits of residents by artist Richard Ansett will be dramatically projected on the buildings and displayed as fly posters on the estate.

The projections will transform the structures associated with the worst stereotypes of urban decay into surfaces for the communication of a positive story of the diverse and complex lives that have existed behind the grey bleak facades.

Richard Ansett says: “It is a transformative event redefining a landscape only associated by outsiders with poverty, depravation and decay.

“These portraits are meant as a celebration of the life and community of the estate as it comes to its inevitable end. The images have developed from an exploration of community in the place that might feel like the last place to look. The project recognises the unwarranted reputation that has over-shadowed the amazing lives of generations who have made this place their home.

Yordanos and her sister Asmere

“The Aylesbury is in an irreversible state of decline that can only be met with its destruction in preparation for new homes. These images transcend the politics and are a celebratory document of the estate’s last residents in an attempt to re-frame some of the narratives and dispel the mythologies associated with urban decay.

“Beyond the projection event we hope this series will continue to act as a time capsule; a remembrance of community in the face of the lowest expectations. A more complex interpretation of the amazing lives and the human stories behind and in spite of this brutal facade.”

The Creation Trust Team

Charlotte Benstead – CEO of The Creation Trust says: “For years it was the first port of call for directors, producers and location scouts looking for grim backdrops to murder scenes, gun and drug storylines and gang-related crimes in soaps and gritty dramas. Due to pressure from local residents, Southwark council banned filming on the estate but all these representations have perpetuated the negative reputation of the estate… We felt we needed a record an alternative and more truthful version.

“We want to celebrate our residents who have been stuck in their homes during the pandemic and show the world that there are real lives happening behind the vast, grey exterior of the estate.  This is a moment in time, with one phase of the estate now demolished, we felt the need to capture this unique piece of London before it disappears and focus on the amazing people who live here rather than the often negative headlines about their homes.”

Watch the projection live on Instagram: @creationse17 @richardansettPROJECTION ON INSTA

7pm – 9pm 22nd October 2020

Creation Trust,1 Beaconsfield Rd, London SE17 2EN


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