Oxford Circus John Lewis Showcase with somewhereto_ - Q&A with Sarah Holt
Untill 31st July John Lewis and somewhereto_ will be working together to showcase artwork from 10 talented individuals who were chosen amongst many others in the UK. Click on the link to see all of the amazing entries we received! We’re speaking to Sarah Holt and hearing what she has to say about it all.
What’s your full name, age, and where do you come from?
My name is Sarah Holt and I’m 24 from Leicester.
Why did you enter the competition? Do you find it challenging to get your work seen?
I entered the competition as I thought it would be a fantastic opportunity to have my work in a space in London especially in a place like John Lewis, I do find it difficult to find places to show my work any galleries that have approached me about showing my work always have such high costs for an exhibition. I have shown some of my pieces in local pubs, cafes and bars in Leicester that would show them for no cost but they don’t have the same footfall as that in London.
What’s your work about? Who inspired it?
My work is titled ‘My Week with Marilyn’ it is inspired by the film of the same name, I found the film so beautiful and amazing how Michelle Williams was able to completely inhabit the time and space of Marilyn Monroe while she was filming ‘The Prince and the Showgirl’ in England. The painting captures a timeless moment of Marilyn/Michelle. With my acrylic painting I focus on figurative works or portraiture, I like to either paint iconic people or paint people to look like an icon. I also work with oil paints and stitching.
What do you think of the John Lewis gallery space?
I’m very excited about the John Lewis space, Oxford Street is one of the most famous shopping destinations and with such a well established and renowned company as John Lewis I feel very honored to have been chosen as one of the selected artists.
Where is your local high street? And what is it like?
Leicester’s High Street is quite large there is a new shopping centre where a lot of the shops that were on the High Street have relocated to, so instead there are quite a few poundshops that have taken those spaces or they are now empty spaces. Even in the Shopping Centre not all the businesses have lasted and there are quite a few empty units.
How do you think empty shops/spaces on the high street should be used?
I think that empty spaces should be opened up for pop up shops/events/gigs for people to use, it should be made easy and straightforward to be able to book the space. Bringing something vibrant, interesting and exciting to the High Street will entice people back to it.
Where would be your dream space for somewhereto_ to unlock for you?
There are so many places that I would love to show but a dream space would for me would be a shop window on Oxford Street or another main shopping street in a busy city, to get the most footfall past my work and for it to be seen by as many people as possible.
Where can people find out more about your work?
To find out more about me my website is www.sarahmichellepaints.co.uk
The John Lewis exhibition is part of somewhereto_ re:store (the #highstreetheist); a high impact campaign which will see young people take over a series of shops across the UK for a six- week period, kicking off on 18 July. We’re putting disused shops into the capable hands of local young people to deliver events and activities that will benefit their future ambitions as well as revamp the high street and engage local communities.
Want to know more and get involved? Visit somewhereto.com/restore