an illustration of the south norwood library

‘Portrait of a Brutalist Library’: Drawing Workshop

Bringing together residents from the South Norwood Community to celebrate their local Library through drawing

Libraries, being containers of stories and local memory, encompass the very essence of modern collective folklore. South Norwood is home to one of Croydon’s most characterful Libraries. Built in 1968 by Croydon architect Hugh Lea, South Norwood Library is a perfect example of Brutalist architecture – a movement which embodied a socialist view of our cities, striving to create egalitarian buildings that served their residents as simple, honest and functional spaces.


‘PORTRAIT OF A BRUTALIST LIBRARY’ brings together residents from the South Norwood Community to celebrate their local Library through drawing it. In this workshop participants will be encouraged to find personal viewpoints of this historic building that consider the Library’s past, present, and future. It is our hope that the project will keep the library at the forefront of people’s minds as we consider what new and creative ways this building can continue to serve the people of South Norwood in the coming years.


This workshop is for ages 12+. We particularly welcome older generations who have a long lasting connection to South Norwood.

You do not need to bring anything and no previous drawing experience required. Simply bring your memories and stories.

South Norwood Library is accessible via ramp, stairs and elevator.



Hoagy Houghton is a visual artist and resident of South Norwood. He is interested in how bad luck, misfortune and tragedy can be turned on their head through the creation of art. Be it through processes of mark making, visual story telling or community projects, he hopes to promote creation as a transformative act that can begin positive change. The project will be assisted by Jonny Kemp. A fellow South Norwood resident, Jonny is a portrait artist interested in portraying people and the spaces they inhabit. His work celebrates communities, depicting those who might not normally see themselves represented in art.

Part of:

desire paths title
9 local commissioned artists & groups
( Aug 2023 )

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