Life & Culture

Artist exhibits new show in Southgate Station

A Jewish artist has collaborated with TFL for a single night, critiquing consumerist culture, with her show Nothing To Buy.


For one night only, artist Joanna Gilbert has collaborated with TFL and Cushman & Wakefield to turn Unit 6, Station Parade, Southgate, with her pop up show, entitled Nothing To Buy.

The forty year old artist, who is currently studying for a Masters in Fine Art at Chelsea College of Arts, is interested in hyper-consumerism and how consumerist desires merely result in short-lived satisfaction. She believes that once we purchase an item, we are right back to where we began- just wanting more.

Joanna Gilbert is exploring notions such as: Are we consuming for the sake of consuming? What if we consumed a vacant space? How would that impact our desire to purchase if there is nothing to purchase?

With a penchant for sheen and luminosity, Joanna Gilbert’s pop-up show aims to be an intervention between retailers and consumers.  By projecting only colour and light from the vacant shop (there is nothing to buy) the window shopper becomes a passerby, making a memory of the space as it is lit up for a single night.

She told the JC how she discovered the space. “My children go to school in Southgate so I parked there to go to uni and just fell in love with it”.

Gilbert says: “Every day I walk past it and admire the beautiful full length panoramic windows that span the whole length of the shop then curve around corners. It’s empty but breathtaking. There is so much potential for this space.  I see it. I believe in it.”

She says that she is “proud to be Jewish” and has “always dreamed of living in Israel”.

Growing up in South London, the artist, born in Bombay, was “one of only three Jews” in her school. She moved to London in her mid-20s and has two children, one who is moving to JFS and another at Wolfson Hillel.  

She describes herself as “more spiritually connected with the identity than traditional”.

Nothing To Buy, Pop-Up Art Show will open on Thursday 26th July between 7-9 pm, Unit 6, Station Parade, Southgate, London, N14 5BH

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