Power of the pop-up

Angela O’Connell on the success of her pop-up art gallery in Palmers Green

A visitor enjoys Angela's art at the pop-up gallery in Green Lanes
A visitor enjoys Angela’s art at the pop-up gallery in Green Lanes

I am a contemporary artist living in Palmers Green and I recently decided to test the local market to see if I could sell any of my paintings.

I thought the easiest way to do this would be to hold a pop-up art gallery in Palmers Green displaying an eclectic mix of my artworks. I chose a shop in Green Lanes which was empty because it was in-between leases. The landlady, Niki Louca, was happy for me to use her shop space as a pop-up gallery for a weekend in February.

I thoroughly enjoyed the experience, met lots of lovely local people, and made a good profit in a very short period! I was delighted with local support and, in particular, the efforts made by Palmers Green Action Team, who helped to promote my pop-up gallery. They are a voluntary community group working to help Green Lanes thrive and return it to the heart of the community and they certainly helped drive some business my way.

This experience has given me the confidence to do more pop-up exhibitions, initially in other parts of North London where I will be again targeting empty shops and buildings with a short lease. Given my experience, I feel it would be highly beneficial if landlords, in general, would allow creatives to utilise spaces that were empty, if only for a short time, for pop-up exhibitions.

Hosting pop-up galleries in high streets is not just beneficial for the artist, it adds interest to the community and hopefully inspires others to be more creative.

Check out Angela’s art via her website: