Review: A Tropical School In Clapham?
We'd venture there are scores of Clapham dwellers who don't know there's a gallery just off Clapham High Street. Upon entering Studio Voltaire there's an even bigger shock; here is a South American schoolroom, complete with tropical plants and a dazzling colour scheme.
The gallery space has been transformed with impressive attention to detail by Sol Calero; great lengths have gone to fill the room with vivacity — from the brightly coloured panels on the roof, to a gas pipe, painted a sunny yellow.
Calero has based the installation on a Caribbean island community that's inside a Venezuelan national park. Its location means that the community has been subject to European colonialism, which has mixed with South American and Afro-Caribbean styles; a hybrid reflected in the classroom created here.
As part of the exhibition the artist has invited local schools to create paintings inspired by the space, and these can be found on the desks and easels in this space — it's a nice touch, and some of these are very impressive in their own right.
Here is a fun, visually-striking installation that explores how Latin American and European cultures and architecture have borrowed off each other as they have evolved.
Sol Calero: La Escuela Del Sur is on at Studio Voltaire, 1a Nelson's Row, SW4 7JR until 6 December. Entrance is free and the gallery is open Wednesday-Sunday, 10am-6pm.
Last Updated 03 November 2015