The London Group
London SE1 8TJ
• The London Group is a thriving democratic co-operative of artists practising across the visual arts.
• Its singular object, unchanged since its foundation in 1913 as an alternative to the Royal Academy and the New English Art Club, is "to advance public awareness of contemporary visual art by holding exhibitions annually."
• Entirely self-financed and self-managed it maintains a principled independence from art world interests. The Group has a simple and open constitution that allows for the flexible development of its activities in response to the changing context of artistic practice. Membership currently stands at just under a hundred. New members are elected annually by submission of current work. There is an annual subscription.
• Operating in the interstices between existing art institutions its focus is on its self-generated exhibitions. It has learned to live an inventive nomadic life. In spite of lacking a 'home of its own' it has sustained its unbroken exhibiting record since its inception. Venues for its exhibitions and activities are found and negotiated across London and beyond, recently Amsterdam and Hastings, and next year, Cardiff.
• Criteria for membership are the quality of a maker's emerging vision and commitment to the Group's activities. As a cooperative the Group finds its strength in its encouragement of diversity. Indeed the Group's very identity and long-term viability is vested in its embrace of the differences of vision displayed in its members' work.
• The Group's current planning includes both full members' exhibitions and smaller group shows at a range of venues including The Menier Gallery (Members' annual show) in October 2008, and at The Cello Factory (sculptures and 3-D work) and The Morley Gallery (drawings) in early 2009.
• In the lead up to its centenary the Group is optimistic that, through a steady expansion of its activities, it can bring its members' work to an ever-widening audience both in London and further afield.