Interview with Lucy Bainbridge (Director @ Bainbridge Print Studio)

Published Mar, 2015

Lucy, what is your background?

I did Fine Art and Visual Culture in Bristol and after graduating I joined Spike Island Printmakers. I wasn’t particularly into print it was just a really nice studio. My granny was a printmaker and as a kid I would go to her studio, it was really cold and I thought ‘this isn’t for me.’ So it all happened by accident.

Then from Bristol I moved to London and I did an MA in Print in Camberwell.

So was it during the MA that you set up Bainbridge Print Studios?

No it was quite a while after that. I started teaching part-time for a couple of years while continuing my own practice, due to an illness I had to give it up teaching and while recovering I came across a space and thats how the studio started. So it wasn’t really planned. I had been using print studios 10 years in the UK and abroad, so I knew how they worked and I did it.

How long ago was that?

I think it was 8 years ago.

London must have been very different back then.

Yes, It was difficult but possible.

How many printmaking studios were around back then?

There weren’t really any in South London.

Did your studio concentrate on screen-printing at the beginning?

Yes, mainly screen-printing and we had a small printing press as well. Of course, once you get a space people start giving you stuff that they don’t have space for.

Do you still have that first space?

Yes, it's in West Norwood and we recently added this studio in Elephant and Castle. This space took months to fix up it used to be a butcher shop.

Elephant and Castle Space before the renovation.

Elephant and Castle Space after renovation.

Who are the artists using the studio now?

All artists are independent, so everyone is doing their own stuff. Around half are doing print on textiles, and half print on paper. Mostly it is screen printers with a few etchers, most the artists here are in similar stages in their career.

Is it just memberships that Bainbridge Print Studio does?

We do Open Access Memberships, Desk spaces and Studios, and on Mondays evenings and weekends we run various workshops. With the Open Access, artists buy 10 sessions that can be used over 6 months.

Annually I run an open submission print show — Bainbridge Open, however this year I decided to postpone until Spring 2016 it because of the move.

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