Acclaimed artist visits charity ahead of first UK exhibition
The acclaimed international artist Nina Pandolfo, has visited a leading children’s charity ahead of her first solo exhibition in the UK.
Nina, from Sao Paulo, in Brazil, visited Caudwell Children, the Staffordshire based charity that provides practical and emotional support to disabled children and their families, to show children who were attending one of the charity’s Activity Days how she goes about creating her art.
The 42-year-old artist also took the opportunity to take a private tour of the charity’s recently opened Caudwell International Children’s Centre, the UK’s first purpose built facility dedicated to providing assessment, support and research into neurodevelopmental condition, including autism.
Nina, best known for the wide-eyed characters who inhabit her fantastical canvasses and graffitied murals worldwide, was introduced to the charity by JD Malat Gallery who are presenting her first solo exhibition in the UK.
“The gallery knew all about Caudwell Children,” explained Nina. “They told me all about their work and I loved what I heard.
“I checked out the charity’s website and I knew that I wanted to support them in some way.”
Bosses at JD Malat contacted the charity and discovered that they had organised a Creative Arts Activity Day for children in Staffordshire, on Saturday 2nd November, 2019.
“I like to think outside the box and I immediately thought this would be a great chance to explain to the children attending how I work,” Nina said. “I’d only been in the country for 17 days but I was determined to attend the session and introduce the children to my work.”
Having set up an easel in the main reception of the centre Nina spent nearly two hours creating a unique piece of art that the children were able to view and be inspired by. As she enthused. “It was such a pleasure to do it and to help in any way makes you feel so much better.
“I have no connection to disability so taking part in this activity has also made me a better person.”
Nina began drawing and painting from a young age before discovering graffiti and fully dedicating herself to art at the age of just 14.
She soon became an integral part of the Brazilian graffiti scene and in the 90’s pioneered the way for the more widespread inclusion of graffiti in Museums and Galleries.
“It was so new that I didn’t know or class it as graffiti at the time, it was just something I did,” exclaimed Nina. “Often when I was outside painting on buildings during the day people would approach me and say ‘Do you have permission to do that’, but I didn’t think about it.”
Since her first exhibition at the age of 22, Nina has exhibited internationally to incredible success whilst still creating monumental urban projects for Public spaces.
Nina’s exhibition Gratitude, will open at the JD Malat Gallery, 30 Davies Street, Mayfair, W1K 4NB, on Friday 8th November, 2019, and will run until Saturday 7th December, 2019. The exhibition has been designed to be a joyful celebration of life and the kaleidoscopic emotions associated with being ‘grateful’.
Nina says that the exhibition will present a Universe with no negativity, instead viewing the world around her with a dichotomy of childlike innocence and adult awareness. “If we look at the world like children the world would be a better place,” Nina explained. “We need to have the same fascination and enchantment that a child feels whilst discovering something new.”
Becky Deri, Short Break Activity Days Manager at Caudwell Children, was delighted by the visit. As she explained: “Watching the canvass come to life was amazing and the children who attended the session loved it.
“Nina took the time to explain how she prepared her canvass, why she selected the type of paint she used, and how to layer her picture whilst allowing the paint to dry.
“It was wonderful to see and it gave the children a better understanding into what’s involved in being an artist.”
Becky says that taking part in the charity’s Activity Clubs has been shown to help increase socialisation and encourage communication, whilst reducing boredom and anxiety. “All the sessions are inspiring, educational and interactive,.” She concluded.
Nina is also donating 100% of sales from the first 60 prints of Rakimona, a limited edition of 75 prints from the exhibition to Caudwell Children. The prints are priced at £450.
For more information on Caudwell Children’s Short Break Activity Days visit the web page here.