Welcome to the website of HENRY NORMAL

Hello, I’ve been posting information on Facebook for the last two years and have finally got round to organising a website. The site contains much of the same information and material as my Facebook site but I’m aware not everyone does Facebook and that the information there is often hard to access other than by labouriously scrolling down. The information here is far better organised and more extensive.

There’s a contact page if you’d like to email me. Do let me know your thoughts on the site and any suggestions.

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Here is the Press Release for our forthcoming exhibition Rocket Artists present Art By Johnny - please share!

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Thanks to everyone that came to the BBC Radio 4 recording of 'A Normal Love' last night. Here's Carl the producer and myself in the dressing room before the show trying to think of pre-watershed words for various sexual activities . ... See MoreSee Less

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Rocket Artists present ART BY JOHNNY: exploring inclusive curation April 2nd – 29th, 2018 Phoenix Brighton, 10-14 Waterloo Place, Brighton BN2 9NB Contact: gallery@phoenixbrighton.org ... See MoreSee Less

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Rocket Artists present ART BY JOHNNY: exploring inclusive curation April 2nd – 29th, 2018 Phoenix Brighton, 10-14 Waterloo Place, Brighton BN2 9NB Contact: gallery@phoenixbrighton.org


Rocket Artists, a group of artists with and without learning disabilities will journey together to explore the notion of inclusive, collaborative curation. They will present an exciting, vibrant exhibition and series of events that reveals their curation process and celebrates the impressive artwork by young, prolific and autistic member of the Rockets; Johnny Carroll-Pell.

The exhibition will start on World Autism Awareness Day 2nd April 2018 and run for 4 weeks ending on the 29th April. It aims to provide opportunities for various communities of artists, families and organisations to connect through a celebration of art, inclusion and diversity whilst inviting us to re-consider the process of curation.

Alongside the exhibition will be an associated programme of talks, workshops, happenings and a book launch all taking place in and around Brighton’s prestigious Phoenix gallery. Amongst these events Johnny's parents, the film/tv producer and writer Henry Normal and screenwriter Angela Pell will be launching their book about Johnny's life entitled 'A Normal Family' (Two Roads). Also local musician Tom Cook, who works with Daniel Wakefield and Beat Express will be hosting an event and there will be a talk by motivational speaker and horse whisperer Dido Fisher. With more to follow, featuring local artists, poets and writers – as well as some surprise guests.

The Rocket Artists work from their studio in Phoenix Brighton and are a social enterprise CIC. Phoenix Brighton is embracing new ways to showcase their unique approach to collaboration and inclusive art practices starting with this exhibition, opening April 2018.

Johnny has nearly 1,000 people following his art on social media and his work has been described as ‘inspiring, awesome, assured, fresh and
2spontaneous’. A book of his art by Manchester based Flapjack Press will also be launched at an event. Earlier this year his portrait of Nick Cave appeared in a book that was presented to the singer on his birthday.
See more of Johnny’s Art Work here: www.facebook.com/Art-By- Johnny-882499851852944/

“Johnny’s use of colour and mark making are purely intuitive. His mastery of colour and tone both attract the viewer’s gaze and then, in what is perhaps the most difficult action of an artist, it holds it. The mark making is energetic and immerses you in to Johnny’s world of intense sensual experience, colours, lights, movement and feelings are magnified and an incredible door is held slightly ajar for the viewer to generously share Johnny’s vision of the world.”
Laura Keeble artist

“There is a quote that goes around the Parent blogs and pages of online Special Needs communities: ‘I thought I would have to teach my child about the world. It turns out, I have to teach the world about my child’. I am pretty sure that through his art, Johnny is also doing his bit to educate people about expectation, expression and communication.”
Angela Pell Mother of Johnny Carroll-Pell
’Kung fu Panda’, Marker pen on ‘Pavilion’, Acrylic on paper, 2017 canvas, 2012

The Rocket Artists history of collaboration, inclusivity and co-curation has been significantly supported by the Arts Council England, most recently for the Side by Side exhibition at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank, London.

Jude Kelly, Artistic Director of Southbank said of the project:
‘I consider this exhibition to be groundbreaking in its ambition and realisation. It shifts a paradigm by making us understand that art created by people with different life experiences gives us fresh perspectives on ideas around what is possible for an artist, both practically and emotionally. It demands that both artists and audiences think of inclusivity as the only approach to the full expression of our cultural life.’ Jude Kelly Artistic Director, Southbank

This new, exciting, innovative and important exhibition of Johnny’s work will be co-facilitated by Jane Fox and Jo Offer; inclusive arts practitioners and members of the Rocket Artists who worked together on Side by Side.
See more of Rocket Artists work here: www.rocketartists.co.uk Instagram www.instagram.com/rocket_artists/

For more information please contact Karin Mori, Artistic Programme Manager, Phoenix Brighton, (01273) 603700 ext. 203 email: gallery@phoenixbrighton.org
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