“Seeing Battersea Arts Centre closed left a great hole in my heart but I always remember our motto NOT FOR ME, NOT FOR YOU, BUT FOR US.” – Maureen “Mo” Martin, BAC Duty Manager
In the portrait above, you can spot our wonderful Duty Manager, Maureen “Mo” Martin, as she oversees the stillness of a completely empty Grand Hall. Having cared for BAC for over twenty years, Mo is our longest serving member of staff, and in many ways she is the kindly soul of our magical building. She is a core part of our unique welcome whether her day involves the excitement of a sold-out press night, hundreds of youth activists sleeping over in the Grand Hall, fires, floods or global pandemics.
Battersea Arts Centre is part of the Custodians for Covid project which celebrates people like Mo, who do so much to keep theatres thriving, and to give our audiences, artists and staff a royal welcome.
Led by photographer Joanna Vestey, the project features 20 London theatres in lockdown including the Royal Opera House and the Roundhouse. The whole collection is stunning, and a rare opportunity to appreciate the immense number of stories each of our theatres hold even when quiet, and the people that hold them together.
The photos are available to buy until the end of August 2020. There are 250 limited edition prints and each 50x60cm print costs £200, including printing and postage. The photographer has larger print sizes and is also selling the collection together on request.
We know that this is an incredibly uncertain time for many people and businesses, however, if you have been wondering how to support us, consider buying a print of this special image, and have a little piece of our history for the future.
You will receive a limited edition print and, because the photographer Joanna Vestey is generously forfeiting her fee, the full proceeds of your donation will come directly to us.
Take a look at BAC’s portrait, and the full set here. There’s also been a The Guardian feature of the series, and you can hear the photographer Joanna Vestey on BBC’s Front Row (from 21.22).