Roehampton’s emerging arts community

Hidden between the evergreen beauty of Richmond Park and Roehampton University lies an untapped and vibrant community of artists full of potential; creating wonderful personal masterpieces open to opportunities to celebrate and promote their work.

Often described as ‘geographically isolated’ and statistically one of the most deprived areas in Wandsworth, Roehampton remains rich in creativity and individuals able to express themselves through the medium of various art forms.

“Roehampton is a great area to live in as it is surrounded by the tranquillity of Putney Heath and Richmond Park where I can walk, relax and be inspired by nature. There is also a great diverse community full of interesting characters who are always happy to stop for a chat and truly support their neighbours.”

Below is a taste of five local artists from Roehampton that represent the diversity, knowledge and experience of the local area.

Lynne Capocciama
Local resident and artist for over 20 years, Lynne utilises her passions for art and all things community and combines them to help bring people closer and provide positive experiences through art. She is also founder of Estate Art, a community group of local artists who have provided artwork (see below) such as individual party bags for live music community events and food parcels.

Nur Ali Sheikh
Born in 1928, Ali studied at the Royal College of Art and has been an artist for over 70 years. His passion for nature and animals have inspired his personal and diverse art.

“I love living in Roehampton for the nearness to Richmond Park and its deer’s and wildlife.”

Jackie Mwanza
Local resident and founder of Ubuntu Museum, which was officially launched last year with a pop-up gallery on the Alton Estate to highlight stories and experiences of people of African descent. Combined with the effortless aesthetical beauty and history behind her art work Jackie uses her art as a platform to raise awareness and encourage positive conversations and interactions around race and heritage.

“My mission is to promote cultural inclusion within the arts, education and commerce”.

Saffron Foss
Local mother of two young men who works in the local academy teaching mathematics to learners with SEN needs. Saffron has always channelled her talent and love for the arts through her work and ongoing appreciation for its therapeutic qualities. Creating many memorable pieces with oils, acrylic, pastels and ink.

“After a day of teaching maths it is nice to come home and do some art. I love to draw from nature but also from memory.” 

Chrissy McCarthy
Local artist who has lived in the Roehampton/Putney Heath area for over 30 years. Vastly experienced in using various multimedia platforms and pushing her limits to create vibrant, colourful and unique artwork.

Local art venues
With no local spaces specifically dedicated to the promotion and exhibition of the arts in Roehampton, artists have had to use their own initiative to create partnerships with local businesses and organisations. Hopefully with more attention focused on the local arts scene this will change and more opportunities can be created from new and existing relationships in the area.

Roehampton Library, Café Joy and the Kings Head are three such organisations who have recently supported artists by exhibiting their work.

Roehampton Library
One of the most identifiable buildings in the whole of Roehampton and one of the cornerstones of the community. Books aren’t the only thing on offer here, members can also come in and look at local artwork and find out more information about what is going on in the community.

King’s Head
Situated in the heart of Roehampton this local pub has supported various community projects and art exhibitions. Immediately recognisable by the large artwork designed by local residents outside its premises in support of the NHS and local artists

Café Joy
On Danebury Avenue you’ll find this popular regulars café and unofficial community hub serving the best coffee and sandwiches in Roehampton. Inside you’ll also notice a varied selection of artwork depicting the local area from nearby artists.

Written by Jonathan Palma (JP), Roehampton Community Capacity Building Project Lead from Citizens Advice, and Lynne Capocciama, Founder of Estate Art.