Space invaders: Rise Projects uses colour and creativity to take over Notting Hill

Boom, embedded in wall
2 Lansdowne Rise, the home of Rise Projects, an art collective run by the Silvie Fleming Collection
(Image credit: TBC)

Ask a Londoner what they think of Holland Park and, chances are, you will be painted a portrait of grandeur and greenery. Lovely, certainly, but this corner of Kensington is not known for its trailblazing townsfolk.

But scratch beneath Holland Park's conservative surface and a new breed of artistic projects start to rear their painted faces. Florence Devereux got the ball rolling in 2012 when she founded the Ladbroke Terrace Collective (opens in new tab), a group who commandeered the transformation of Devereux's family home from plush villa to wild and wacky art residency-turned-gallery in the weeks before the house's sale completed. Since, a number of other projects have sprung up.

Rise Projects, staged by the Silvie Fleming Collection, is a case in point. At the heart of the project is an unassuming, 1950s terraced house, 2 Lansdowne Rise, which has remained virtually untouched since its post-war construction. 'It's a bit of a time warp,' says the collection's director of projects Romilly Stebbings. 'Nothing's changed, from the kitchen to all the radiators.' It is now home to an artistic intervention project that sees the space transformed by various creative incumbents. 'There are remnants of people around the house,' says Stebbings. 'We invite the artists to react to the space around them…there's a bit of a creepy feeling in there, so it's interesting to see what comes out.'

The house was bought by Silka Rittson-Thomas and her husband Hugo (who founded the Silvie Fleming Collection) in 2013. The couple were later told that the building's future was uncertain. (The house had fallen into disrepair when its first and only owner died in 2010.) To make the most of their limited time, they started Rise Projects, giving artists an opportunity to work in an interesting space without the constraints of funding.

So far, there have been four projects. Jennifer Bornstein kicked things off with her 'Printing Project', painting the house's walls in bright blue. Blue became black shortly afterwards, with Karl Holmqvist & Ei Arakawa's 'Sunflower Sutra', followed by NANG's subversive 'Centre di Pompidoo-doo' and 'BOOM!' by Marte Eknaes & Nicolau Vergueiro.

Like palimpsests, the works build like layers in the house, each acting as a piece of history left behind, embedded in the walls and floors. Stebbings agrees: 'All of the artists leave their own imprint. There are elements of each of them after they leave.' That's part of the appeal of the project; while Hugo and Silka always keep one piece from each of the residencies, the impermanence of the projects is something that particularly excites them.

Until the future of the buildings is decided, Number 2 will continue give its neighbours something to talk about.

Sitting room with original fireplace and tiled surround

The house itself is an original 1950s building, still virtually untouched since its construction, complete with radiators, tiles and fireplaces

(Image credit: TBC)

A woman on a ladder painting the brick walls bright blue

So far, there have been four projects. Jennifer Bornstein kicked things off with her 'Printing Project', painting the house's walls in bright blue

(Image credit: TBC)

Exposed brick wall with paper hanging, printed using blue paint

Bornstein's work in progress

(Image credit: TBC)

Wall of a staircase painted black with sunflower lights hanging from the handrail

Blue became black shortly afterwards, with Karl Holmqvist & Ei Arakawa's 'Sunflower Sutra'

(Image credit: TBC)

Residential building undergoing construction works

NANG took over next, with its subversive 'Centre di Pompidoo-doo'...

(Image credit: TBC)

Black wall with a brightly-coloured painting and a bucket chute from the window

...covering the walls in lurid paintings and installing a bucket chute

(Image credit: TBC)

Mural painted on the exposed wall of a residential building, with a green, wood panel fence

'We invite the artists to react to the space around them…there's a bit of a creepy feeling in there, so it's interesting to see what comes out,' says director of projects Romilly Stebbings

(Image credit: TBC)

Black wall with shelving which has been broken away in the middle and now has an escalator with the classic comic-book "BOOM!" in the centre

'BOOM!' by Marte Eknaes & Nicolau Vergueiro

(Image credit: TBC)

A different angle of the "BOOM!" artwork, allowing the original pale stone fireplace to be seen

Like palimpsests, the works build like layers in the house, each acting as a piece of history left behind, embedded in the walls and floors

(Image credit: TBC)

A window with pale green neck cushion window stickers, and a television screen displaying a tribal scene

'All of the artists leave their own imprint. There are elements of each of them after they leave,' says Stebbings

(Image credit: TBC)

ADDRESS

Rise Projects
2 Lansdowne Rise
London W11 2NR

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