Peckham’s new art gallery-cum-hair salon DKUK is a cut above
When is a hair salon not a hair salon? When it doubles as an art gallery. Daniel Kelly was a stylist before training as an artist, and he has married these two skills in DKUK, his venture in South London’s Peckham. ‘As an artist, I had been interested in making art for people outside galleries,’ he says. ‘Showing art in a hair salon felt more democratic’.
Kelly, who met designer Sam Jacob at a wedding, briefed him to create a flexible, hybrid space, fitting for both haircuts and sculptures. Chairs are positioned either in front of artwork on the walls (instead of mirrors) or around a central table in front of sculptures. For the ‘reveal’, clients sit in front of a two-way mirrored display cabinet. By pushing a big red button, the mirror lights up and reflects the new hairstyle.
Jacob has also curated DKUK’s current exhibition, ‘Museum Show’. He asked architects, designers and artists – including Assemble, Baukuh, DK-CM, Fala Atelier, Fraser Muggeridge, Madelon Vriesendorp, Maio and OMMX – to create a scale model, reimagining what a museum could be.
Kelly is now training artists to become hairdressers, giving them a second income stream. ‘I felt more comfortable in the art world, so having artists at DKUK makes it a nice place to work. Everyone tells us the atmosphere isn’t like any other hair salon.’ §