Kensington Exchanges led by Corinne Noble

‘Kensington Exchanges’ was led by London-based artist Corinne Noble. A graduate of Chelsea College of Art (BA Painting) and the Royal College of Art (MA Printmaking) her linear drawings, hand-sewn books, wooden constructions and walks find inspiration in familiar fragments: found rocks, antique postcards, household bricks and historic photographs.

The group walk took place in SW7, we met beside Kensington Tube Station and the route weaved along smaller streets, cobbled mews and particular buildings and addresses of interest, rooted in and guided by a collection of postcards dating back to the early 20th century. Instead of focusing on Kensington’s grand landmarks, royal history, museums and architecture, Corinne invited us to look to smaller details and hidden human histories, highlighting the lives lived in the last century and the extensive changes that have taken place. As we walked we stopped regularly at various addresses to examine postcards that had been sent or received there or were the subject of the card’s image, thereby learning the area’s story through fragmented messages, witnessing the evolution of the landscape and of human relationships and communication. We gained insight into gift giving, hierarchy of communication, pre-marital traditions and how the postcard is equivalent to modern day text message. The walk enabled participants to consider the relationships and correspondence between words, imagination, materials and location. Between the surfaces of handwritten postal items and the architecture of the street, there was space to reflect, develop and encounter alternative views and perspectives on place.