It’s paintings not politics at the council

Town Hall exhibition as Clerkenwell councillor leaves politics

Friday, 25th February — By Anna Lamche


Cllr Kadeema Woodbyrne and Gary Power with work by Ruth Liebman

A DEPARTING councillor plans to turn the Town Hall into an art gallery this International Women’s Day to mark her exit from politics.

Clerkenwell councillor Kadeema Woodbyrne, Islington’s first “Women and Girls’ Champion” has said there is still time to submit artwork for her Expressions Of Femininity exhibition.

The council is hoping to back Cllr Woodbyrne’s exhibition with a pot of money to support women and girls into the future. “We’re hoping we will have a ring-fenced £50k pot of funding as part of my legacy fund as women and girls’ champion,” said Cllr Woodbyrne.

Plans are still being finalised for a takeover of the Town Hall on March 8.

“I’m hoping we can take art off the walls and replace it,” Cllr Woodbyrne said.

Work by Ruth Liebman – the late artist who spent decades painting scenes of life in Hampstead – will be displayed, along with submissions by artists of all ages working across a range of mediums.

Gary Power, the Canonbury Tavern’s resident artist, manages Ms Liebman’s collection.

“I thought, wouldn’t it be nice for Ruth’s artwork to be seen,” said Mr Power, who will also be submitting work of his own. Some of the pieces will be auctioned off to raise money for women’s and girls’ charities.

For Cllr Woodbyrne, the exhibition is about getting the community into the Town Hall.

“People I have grown up with, I want them to be part of this, I want them to feel they can rock up to the Town Hall and be comfortable in that space,” she said.

“Everyone uses the phrase ‘hard to reach’ but what does that actually mean? Because I’m leaving, I want that access to be there for others – I feel comfortable going into these kinds of places, but others don’t.”

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