Beaconsfield Gallery occupies the old Ragged School building in Newport Street, Vauxhall. Entering through a sliding glass door in the perimeter wall, you find a welcoming green haven under a shady canopy. The space is compact: climbing plants cover the inside of the wall and cluster extravagantly in large pots, burst from a wheelbarrow, clamber around the door to the Gallery and flourish between the tables and chairs. As you sit drinking your coffee, perhaps with a slice of homemade cake, you are immersed in leaves, flowers and tendrils, which take precedence over the furniture. It is a space to sit and reflect, the only sound the trains passing by behind the building, on their way to Vauxhall or Waterloo. The Gallery cat poses among the plants, like a friendly tiger in a painting by Henri Rousseau. But this is not a jungle, nor is it tame and regimented: it’s a creative, contemplative haven in a little corner of Lambeth, quietly flourishing a stone’s throw from the Thames.
Angela Weight, Independent Curator.