New exhibition to recreate feel of Queen’s Market, Upton Park

Saif Osmani at Queen's Market, Upton Park.

Saif Osmani at Queen's Market, Upton Park. - Credit: Archant

A new art exhibition aims to recreate the hustle and bustle of Queen’s Market in Upton Park.

The show, named “Human Coral”, was created by community activist Saif Osmani who has worked with the traders, shop-keepers, and shoppers to promote the market for years.

In the exhibition space, Saif will set up stalls, present paintings, drawings, photography, and archival material to recreate the experience of a marketplace.

Saif, who also draws inspiration from his travels in Tapei, Taiwan, said: “Markets are the last social spaces in the capital and resist the generic pattern of centralised shopping areas.

“I’m always questioning the neo-liberalisation of public space and I see the immense scale of change in east London, meaning fewer places for people to freely congregate in.


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“Immigrant communities bring with them complex shopping patterns from bazaars, riverboat markets, night markets, shopping centres, and shopping halls.

“Within all markets, lives are anchored together like ‘human coral’.”

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The exhibition runs at Rich Mix Arts Centre, 35 to 47 Bethnal Green Road, E1 6LA from tomorrow (June 6) to June 30.

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