Art Inspired By Merton Priory's 900 Years

Local artists hold unique exhibition in May

In its time, Merton Abbey was just as important as Westminster Abbey, but unlike Westminster, it was almost entirely destroyed by Henry VIII during the Reformation, and is now ignominiously buried under a shopping complex and a main road.

All that remains visible in 2014 are the ruins of the foundations to the Chapter House, off Merantun Way in South Wimbledon. 

This year marks the 900th anniversary of the laying of foundations to the church, and to commemorate this, a group of local artists, organised by Wendy Bliss, are exhibiting art made specifically in response to this anniversary.

Wendy, who was first invited to co-curate an exhibition here with Sue Evans in 2010, and with sponsorship from Marcus Beale Architects and the Museum of London, said: "We have had the continued benefit of Dave Saxby's immense knowledge; as Senior Archaeologist for the Museum of London, he has been heavily involved with the Chapter House since the digs he made in the 70s and 80s."

The artists include Othman Allen, Sheelah Bewley, Wendy Bliss, Julia Iwasz, David Light, Chris Rowe and Jane Tyler.

The free exhibition will be open from 11am-5pm on May 3-5 and May 10-11. All artists will be present to discuss how they have responded to the title of 'River & Relics', as well as David Saxby, with history at his fingertips.

April 10, 2014