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Big Issue vendor Dave Martin is showing off his art work in a London exhibition

Hammersmith seller Dave Martin is showcasing his artwork at Bethnal Green’s Brick Lane Gallery

Popular Big Issue vendor Dave Martin will be showcasing his artworks at a London art gallery for the next 10 days.

The veteran vendor, 59, who has sold the magazine outside Tesco in Hammersmith, west London, for a decade, will be bringing 10 of his artworks to the Works on Paper and Contemporary Painting exhibition at Bethnal Green’s Brick Lane Gallery.

The vendor is relishing the chance to show off his artworks from today to November 7, bringing his bright colours and geometric shapes to the exhibition.

Dave Martin
Dave will be bringing 10 of his geometric shape designs to the Brick Lane Gallery exhibition. Image: Dave Martin

“I’m looking forward to it,” Dave told The Big Issue. “I’ve come a long way with it. When I last had an exhibition I had people coming up to me saying ‘Can I have one of these? Can I have one of these?’ It was a mad rush that day so I’m looking forward to it. 

“I like doing geometric shapes a lot because it just comes naturally to me. I’ve done a few different commissions with different colours and different designs as well.

“I like it when that comes to fruition for me. I like creating and when I do create a piece I feel very proud. I know lots of artists aren’t ever happy with the finished article but I feel proud.”

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It’s not the first time Dave has put his art on display – the vendor played a central role in the Ben Eine-curated Big Issue Art Special magazine in March 2020.

His work is also available on greetings cards, t-shirts and more through HomeLess Made – a social enterprise run by the Barons Court Project to promote talented artists who have experienced homelessness.

The seller also has own website – artbydavemartin.com – to offer online customers the chance to buy his artworks.

“It’s always nice when I see the little arrowhead which means I’ve had a sale through my shop,” added Dave.

“I’ve been learning other mediums in art classes with St Mungo’s recently. I use card, scissors and blue-tack basically to create my geometric shapes but they sent me a kit with acrylic and oils to do some still life.

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“It’s okay, I’ve never used those sorts of mediums before but I enjoyed it. There’s me as an artist saying I’m a novice at it.”

Head to the free show at the Brick Lane Gallery in Bethnal Green from October 27 to November 7 to see Dave’s artwork.

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Support The Big Issue and our vendors this Christmas

Every time you buy a copy of The Big Issue, subscribe or donate, you are helping our vendors to work their way out of poverty by providing 'a hand up not a hand out.' You’re helping Big Issue vendors achieve their #BigWish

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