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Nicholas Borden’s East End View

April 7, 2013
by the gentle author

Brick Lane, looking north

You may recall Nicholas Borden, the artist I came upon painting in the street last year in Bethnal Green. As a consequence of the tremendous response that his work received, Nicholas was offered his first exhibition which opens next week in Spitalfields, so I caught up with him recently to see how he was getting along. While the rest of London has spent the winter indoors, Nicholas braved the streets of the East End in all weathers – becoming a familiar sight, working discreetly with his easel or drawing board.

“At art college, they put me off painting altogether for more than ten years but now I’ve got the strength of character to know what I’m doing, and this is the direction I want to go.” Nicholas assured me,“I’ve been doing a lot of paintings and drawings of the streets of Spitalfields which has proved very fruitful, and there’s lots of historic architecture that I find appealing.”

Although he is softly spoken, it soon becomes apparent in conversation that Nicholas has a passion which drives him forward, making him impervious to the freezing temperatures. “It’s a blessing to be given this exhibition,” he confided to me with a grin, as we sat in his studio surrounded by piles of the streetscapes executed in paint and in pencil that are the outcome of this last extraordinarily productive winter.

Princelet St, looking east

Princelet St, looking west

Brushfield St, looking east

Sclater St, looking west

Fournier St, looking west

Commercial St, looking south

Elder St, looking south

Fleur de Lys St, looking north

Corner of Folgate St & Commercial St

Columbia Rd, looking west

Beck Rd, looking north

Nicholas Borden in his studio

Images copyright © Nicholas Borden

Nicholas Borden’s EAST END VIEW is at Townhouse, 5 Fournier St, until 21st April

You may like to read my original interview

Nicholas Borden, Artist

13 Responses leave one →
  1. Chris F permalink
    April 7, 2013

    Love ‘Commercial St, looking south’.

  2. April 7, 2013

    all the best, look forward to seeing the exhibition.

  3. April 7, 2013

    I am going to try to make this. I live in Chichester though so may have to come up the following day or at the week-end. I will assume the exhibition is on for few days unless I hear from you to the contrary.

    Paddy (love his work and I can see at least one drawing I would like)

  4. Libby Hall permalink
    April 7, 2013

    I want them all.

  5. April 7, 2013

    Great, vibrant images. Wish I could come and see them ‘for real’.

  6. April 7, 2013

    Wonderful work! (Was part of these paintings also briefly a header here? Was wondering where it had got to.) All very best to Nicholas for his show!

  7. gary permalink
    April 8, 2013


  8. April 8, 2013

    Absolutely wonderful work, full of life and energy! Best wishes to Nicolas on his exhibition; I wish I could see it in person!

  9. Cherub permalink
    April 9, 2013

    I really like the drawings of Brushfield Street and Fournier Street and it was nice to wander along them on my recent visit, despite it being a very cold and very dark evening. Still, the Brick Lane curry we’d just had gave us a nice rosy glow!

  10. sheila butt permalink
    April 11, 2013

    A couple of these photos I believe are of Great Eastern Bldgs in Quaker st can you please confirm ,
    Because I spent my whole life in that dwelling what fantastic memories it brings back
    thank you.

  11. April 14, 2013

    I have bought one of his drawings! Of a wobbly building at Dalston Junction. The first ‘proper’ art I’ve ever bought.

  12. Janice Delaney permalink
    April 21, 2013

    I saw your exhibition at Spitalfields and loved them, especially no 31. Do you have a website where I can see more of your pictures.

  13. January 17, 2015

    Nicholas has a way about him that conveys so much energy in his work and I find nothing static in what he either draws or paints. There’s a vibrancy in his execution that’s very appealing and successful.

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