"Lady Kitt: The next Banksy",
Jim Railton, Railtons Auctioneers
"Plenty Up Top works because you can feel the positivity shining off Kitt. People want to talk to them. That communication, that's the powerful thing."
Michaela Wetherell, curator and Nasty Women International Art Prize judge, 2018
Plenty Up Top Gallery
Street Art you can have a chat with
A social (sociable) Gallery on my head
Kitt established the gallery in 2017 after being diagnosed with Alopecia Areata (patchy baldness). The gallery started as a space for Kitt to explore the changing appearance that Alopecia brings, to celebrate / “decorate” the bald patches and raise awareness of Alopecia. .
People with the condition are often subject to abuse and discrimination which can effect every area of their lives. These effects are not due to the condition itslef, but to the reactions of others to a head that is bald, wigged or unusual.
"Alopecia isn’t hard to deal with, it’s all the other stuff that is a consequence of it... trust, appreciation, relationships, understanding. I don’t care that I have no hair but society’s beauty standards can make you feel like you aren’t beautiful without hair"
Ebony Silk, Dancer, 2018
These effects can be drastically reduced, not by medical science, but by human kindness. People being kind to others and to themselves.
The gallery has developed into a live art proejct and social practice space that Kitt now offers to other people (no need to be an artist!) to create temporary (for up to a week) works of art / social engagement with a particular focus on body positivity, queer visibility, disability visibility and crafting.
Works can include (although are not limited to!) performance, hair shaving/ dying / styling, millinery, body painting.
To date 70+ people from all over the world (including the USA, UK, Europe, Mexico and Korea) have submitted proposals to / made work for the gallery! You can see some of them below and some of them HERE
Kitt describes the project as "street art you can have a chat with". The gallery is "open" for as long as a given piece of work lasts and Kitt will go about daily life (catching buses, doing the school run, shopping and even swimming) whilst wearing the works. So a wide variety of people see the gallery and often ask Kitt about it; sometimes sharing their experiences of hair loss, sometimes sharing experiences of being unkind to others with hair loss. These conversations create an ongoing proejct which consist of a series of unplanned interactions and exists as shared knowledge between Kitt and people who initiate those conversations.
During 2018 the gallery is the venue for the first Nasty Women International Art Prize.