15 Oct 2008 – 20 Oct 2008

Event times

Daily 8am — 8pm

Cost of entry



Travel Information

  • 12, 37, 63, 78 (alight at Peckham Rye)
  • Take the East London Line to Peckham Rye station.
  • Regular trains to Peckham Rye station from London Victoria, London Bridge and Blackfriars

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OPTIMISM: THE ART OF OUR TIME is an exhibition celebrating optimism with all its positive and negative implications, historical burden and importance for the future. It explores the role of optimism in both our engagement with art and the circumstances of its creation; its importance as a personal philosophy, and its wider value for the world we live in. Impetus for the exhibition was an ongoing discussion on optimism and its various historical and conceptual aspects, philosophical and pragmatic dimensions. Key to the discussions was the mixed audience with participants from all walks of life who are experts in their field. The salons were initiated and hosted by artist Matthew Stone. OPTIMISM: THE ART OF OUR TIME combines the essential and enduring with the startlingly new. The works evaluate the present and acknowledge the past, but most importantly look to the future as the exhibition embraces the idea that interaction, communication and therefore art are possible. This optimism is dynamic as much as it is solemn. The show sees a group of artists utilising the catalytic potential and communicative possibilities of optimism and expressing it in painting, sculpture, printing, drawing, photography and video. The theoretical stance is matched with solid craftsmanship and the use of elemental materials: gold, glass, stone, metal, concrete and wood. Through an unequivocally sincere take on the theme the exhibition makes a determined stand against cynicism and apathy. Serving as a rejection of these symptoms of our time, 'Optimism' encompasses the artists' conviction in the capacity of their work to comment on the contemporary circumstances of its creation. OPTIMISM: THE ART OF OUR TIME showcases new work by James Balmforth, Tom Barnett, Andreas Blank, Thomas Brock, Bobby Dowler, Christopher Green, Oliver Griffin, Marcus Kleinfeld, Shaun McDowell,Michael Allen & Daniel Schwitzer, Robin Shepherd, Matthew Stone, Henry Stringer, Viktor Timofeev, Awst & Walther and Edward Wallace. A collection of essays exploring the potential and importance of optimism in our time and in relation to art will be published to coincide with the show.