BEDROOMS OF LONDON

08 Feb 2019 - 05 May 2019 at the Foundling Museum

Bedrooms of London presents a new body of work by photographer Katie Wilson highlighting the damaging consequences for children arising from the shortage of social housing in London. Focusing on the spaces in which children are sleeping, the photographs are shown alongside first-hand narratives from families collected and written by Isabella Walker, and offer a poignant insight into the lives and experiences of children living in poverty across London.

In a city where extreme poverty and wealth exist side-by-side, Bedrooms of London makes visible the often shocking and unseen reality of home life for the 700,000 children currently living below the poverty line in our capital, and challenges the prejudices and stereotypes associated with child poverty. 

 
LEAD_IMAGE_Katie Wilson_Bedrooms_of-London-[Jane], 2017 © Katie Wilson.jpg

Jane

Newborn Jane lives in a small bedsit with her mother Amelie. There’s nowhere safe to cook. There are no other families in the hostel. Jane and Amelie have to endure nightly parties, late night rows and chronic substance abuse from their neighbours.

 
 
 

Antousha, Gabriela, and Moses 

Antousha (5), Gabriela (4), and Moses (1), share a two bedroom flat with their parents, Beatrice and George. The family receives benefits but neither George nor Beatrice, a trained nurse, can work. They are in debt from court fees and depend on charity support.  

 

Adam 

9 month old Adam sleeps with mum Emily and dad Martin in the living room. With sister Patricia (10), brothers Bradley (6), and Harry (3), the family of six also eat here as there is nowhere to sit.  

 
 
 

Edward 

Edward (4), and mum Genavieve, live in a one-room hostel where they have been for nearly a year. 

 
 

Nadine, Crystal, Peter, and Simone 

Nadine (17), Crystal (16), Peter (15), and Simone (9) live with mum and dad in a two bedroom flat. The children share one room and spend their leisure time here, between studying and helping mum to tidy the flat.

 
 

Christopher and Simon 

Christopher (4) and Simon (2) are always at home with mum, Sainey. Sainey was trafficked to London as a domestic slave, now free, she can’t afford clothes for her growing children.  

 
 

Rory and Vanessa 

Rory (6), and his sister Vanessa (2) live in temporary accommodation. Their mother, Zainab washes their clothes in the shower and stores food on the bathroom shelves.  

 

The project is the outcome of a two year engagement between families and the Childhood Trust, a London charity that is also producing a book and report to send to both policymakers and potential donors.

This project would no be possible without the support of The Childhood Trust, The Good Agency, The Foundling Museum, and the families involved.

For more information please visit The Foundling Museum