At P Café, we work with and support aspiring artists. These are artists whose work, we believe, has and will have significance and interest for our local community, customers and the wider art community. We invite artists for residencies and to work in our café studio so their practice becomes an interactive element of the café. We have no restrictions on the art we show. Our aim is to enjoy and live a creative experience in our café.
The following is a list of artists that have featured in the café, as resident and/or exhibiting artists.
For more details on each artist please see links to their individual websites.
Prior to her residency at P Café in June 2015, Rodriguez produced a series of works drawn from ‘horror movies set in rural communities, rocks and minerals, wildness, blogging platforms and kitchen sink dramas’. Rodriguez’s current body of work is concerned with natural symbolism, in particular how we project our experiences and sensations onto a landscape. Her paintings are separate, but connected through the imagined narrative that forms between each of them.
Dea Paradisos was part of the FAM Collective residency at P Cafe during May/June 2015.
Paradiso’s work is personal and heartfelt, filled with symbolism and meaning. Working primarily in installation, photography and printing, she uses slate and reclaimed boards, heavy and brittle, as a means of conveying images that are light and thoughtful. The sense of a moment captured is ever-present but so is the constant reminder of the fragility of the idea and transience of that moment.
Vicky Roden did a week long residency at P Cafe in May 2015 where she created ‘The Stirchley Poppet’. In previous performance works, Roden has embodied the character of ‘Nonny Warn’, a figure that falls through time, holding banquets and hosting high tea with legends of human history. Her poppets (see picture), strange sock figures in the forms of mischievous apes, are, according to Roden, ‘obscure Alice in Wonderland characters with delusions of grandeur’. The artist claims they are for the viewer to subconsciously invent their personalities, an inversion of the voodoo principle with capacity to heal not harm.
Jonathan Graney was part of the FAM Collective residency at P Cafe during May/June 2015.
Graney creates fictional scenarios, costumes and objects that embody ideas of our relationship with the creative process. During the residency he created ‘The Stirchley Loom’, hand crafted from reclaimed wood, which enabled a dialogue with cafe visitors and local people to be developed and captured through the weaving process. The resulting tapestry formed the centrepiece for his performance piece Post-Apocalyptic Mead Hall, held at the cafe in July 2015, in collaboration with artist Dale Hipkiss.
Dale Hipkiss worked with Jonathan Charles Graney on the performance art event, Post-Apocalyptic Mead Hall.
Dale Hipkiss is an artist whose work currently revolves around performance and community engagement. He uses a strong sense of making as a grounding for the exploration of ecology, economics, story telling and the study of social structures.
By investing his time learning skills such as making mead, charcoal production, growing wheat, building furniture and bringing these processes to an active audience, Dale hopes to engender a sense of community that he feels is weakening in this current global, consumerist economy. The playful optimism that comes through the working process can be used to explore alternative ways to create community.
Katie Ecclestone was part of the FAM Collective residency at P Cafe during May/June 2015.
Ecclestone’s work deals with impermanence and the stress or destress of the human psyche. Her woolen hangings at P Cafe were the result of performances where the artwork was pulled by weights creating the expectation and event of a tear. These hitherto ‘perfect’ pieces of knitting were altered in a symbolic tearing of work associated with gender stereotypes.
Sarah Fortes-Mayer was part of the FAM Collective residency at P Cafe during May/June 2015.
Working across different mediums, including photography, sculpture and performance, Fortes-Mayer considers our perceptions of the ageing process and the finality of death. Her work often portrays the female roles in familial and societal relationships and brings alternative perspectives to these roles. She strongly challenges our preconceptions about ageing and female identity in the modern world.
Katherine Wade was part of the FAM Collective residency at P Cafe during May/June 2015.
Wade uses photography and free-hand digital design, drawing from everyday human anxieties and frailties, to create intimate renderings of personal situations. In her latest series of work, made specifically for P Cafe and Stirchley, she explored the post-industrial landscape of Stirchley and the relationship between the local people and the ever-growing influence of consumerism on local communities.
Albert Smith and Jo Capper
Jo Capper is a visual artist seeking to broker new cultural connections across peoples, communities and industry. Albert Smith is a comedian and renowned Birmingham baker who uses breadmaking and personal experiences to tell poignant yet comedic stories. They work together through the Bearwood Pantry. On the 18th July 2015 at P Cafe, they entertained and challenged a local audience with demonstrations of bread and cheese making. Profound lessons about how the shared making of simple, wholesome food can engender better community relations and personal transformation, were evident every step of the way.