Featured Image: Easy Love from Heptathlete Ellen Barber. Just one of 35 Athlete/Artists displaying their work
Taking place at London’s Zari Gallery, the idea for the exhibition was initially formulated by javelin thrower Gavin Johnson who himself is a highly accomplished athlete and artist. In partnership with Georgina Dhillon, founder of the Zari Gallery, the pair sought to promote the multifaceted nature of human capability. Through the exhibition they wish to demonstrate that one can excel both physically on the sporting field and creatively in the studio. Beyond this, the exhibition is also a charitable endeavour with a percentage of all sales being donated to two sporting charities which support young athletes in their sporting journey towards international success.
Here at the Ron Pickering Memorial Fund we are fortunate enough to be one of the charities to have been selected as a beneficiary of the exhibition. We are extremely grateful to the Zari Gallery and to Gavin for their efforts in organising such an exciting and important event which will allow us to continue supporting the athletics community. Our mission has always been to assist young British athletes in fulfiling their sporting potential through small but significant annual grants. The charity was set up in memory of Ron Pickering; a Physical Education teacher, national athletics coach and prolific BBC commentator. Ron championed the development of young athletes into well rounded individuals as well as sport stars so this exhibition would have resonated closely with his vision.
The other charity to partner with the exhibition is the Lloyd Cowan Bursary, set up in memory of Lloyd Cowan MBE, an exceptional coach and athlete in his own right who tragically lost his life to COVID-19 in January 2021. Lloyd firmly believed that no one with sporting potential should be held back due to lack of support or opportunity and as such the Bursary offers grants to coaches and unfunded athletes aged 16-23, for whom cost is a barrier to accessing developmental opportunities within athletics.
In total, thirty five current and former athletes will have their work on display for the full duration of the three week exhibition which runs from the 9th – 27th May 2022. Included in this collection is Tokyo 2021 800m silver medallist, Keely Hodgkinson, who works with paint, ink and wash amongst other mediums to create vibrant artwork on paper. As a charity we have supported Keely since she was fifteen and are very proud of her achievements on the track. It is fantastic to discover this other side to her and we encourage you all to go and visit the exhibition and see her talent on display. Across the thirty five athletes involved, there are an eclectic mix of mediums, sizes and styles of art. From acryclic paintings to photography, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
The gallery is open from 10:00 – 17:00 Monday to Friday and can be found at 73 Newman Street, London, W1T 3EJ. Set across multiple floors, the gallery is a cultural hub in the heart of London. They are dedicated to showcasing the work of both new and established artists from all corners of the world. They embrace all mediums of artwork, presenting them in an engaging and accessible way. Regardless of whether you are a regular frequenter of art galleries or if this is your first foray, this is the place for you. We would also love to hear your thoughts on the exhibition so please get in touch via social media after your visit!
The Zari Gallery
73 Newman Street, London, W1T 3EJ, UK