Saturday 22 May 2021

Lesley Cartwright & Ed Arantus and Ann Kopka & Ginny Reddick - Urban Bonsais Real and Imagined

Today is the penultimate day of the Urban Tree Festival and there many talks, activities and blogs to get involved in before the festival ends.  Urban Tree Festival 

Here at Collect Connect we bring you two new art works and two new texts.

Lesley Cartwright and Ed Arantus

Lesley Cartwright was born in Liverpool but later moved to Essex to run a Hostel for homeless teenagers. She made her name in the commercial graphic field and music photography until she developed MS and now paints portraits from her Billericay studio. Cartwright is a multitalented artist who is not bound by genre nor convention. 

Ed Arantus is a conceptual artist and writer. He published his first work in the Censored Zine in 2010 and has exhibited his work ever since at venues like the Contemporary Arts Research Unit in Oxford and the Museum of Futures in Surbiton.

Lesley Cartwright's Urban Bonsais.

Dark comes, Queen of knots
Blowin' spells that blind dub-shot
In the forest, on the rocks
One-night drunk, crazy clocks

Dark comes, double knot
Sleepin' winter rain blew locked
Makin' twisted blizz street gain
Must be lost, hurricane

Dreams baby, snappers rock
Twisted kid, double drop
Jungle tie grind heart blind
Don't unwind your sweet knot

Words by Ed Arantus

Ann Kopka and Ginny Reddick

Ann Kopka is a visual artist and curator. She has exhibited in London, the UK, Denmark, Germany, Italy and the USA and her work is held in private collections in the UK, France, Spain, USA and Australia.

Ann studied Fine Art at Central St Martins College of Art and Design and The City Lit, and Museum Curating at The Tate Modern. She studied The Practices and Debates of Modern Art at the Open University and graduated with a First Class Honours Degree.

Ann is a volunteer project co-ordinator at the Heath Robinson Museum London where she is involved with organising and curating temporary exhibitions. Ann is a member of The Free Painters and Sculptors, an Independent artists’ co-operative and charity.

Ginny is a regular walker in Epping Forest.

Ann Kopka's Urban Bonsai


I hadn’t been in London for long. I was alone in the grey. I wandered and found myself in the under croft, by the river. There were ollies and alley-oops and acid drops.

Then I found a Southbank tree and I actually gave it a hug. (No one does that in Hertfordshire.) The roots reached under the pavement and anchored in London clay.

After that I noticed how they played and fell and played and fell together. (Bailed, they said) They learned caballerials and flips together.

I stayed. I can’t stand on a skateboard while it’s moving. But I’m still here and so is the tree.

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