MORECAMBE FACES: A PORTRAIT OF MORECAMBE
A place savaged by time and forgotten by history.”Neil Wilson, 2019
Neil Wilson runs the pop-up White Elephant Contemporary Gallery in the Arndale Centre, Morecambe with long time cohort, Paul Kondras, two “renegades from the corporate world and the State sector respectively.” They call the gallery “a centre for creative consumerism,” indeed, it sits wonderfully, and perhaps oddly, between the likes of Poundland, Home Bargains and Greggs Bakery, serving up quality contemporary art, and resulting in a footfall that would be the envy of any commercial or municipal gallery in the region.
Wryly, Neil describes himself as a “complex” person, “a poet, philosopher and gunslinger.” He says nothing of his time before Morecambe, just that he “came here to study art,” but then left and moved to Nottingham to further his studies at Trent Polytechnic and returned some years later.
He describes Morecambe as “a place savaged by time and forgotten by history,” and his favourite memories are of “eating at Blackburns’ fish and chips cafe.”
He senses a change happening in the town that has “spent the last 30 to 40 years in a state of long, slow decline,” and hopes it will find “a new lease of life without losing its charm,” at the same time fearing the possibility of “corporate gentrification.”
To see more on my Morecambe Faces: A Portrait of Morecambe project visit my portfolio page.