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Green plaque to be installed in Connaught Village to honour the legacy of artist Halima Nałęcz

12 March, 2021

Westminster City Council has announced it will be mounting a green plaque in honour of the life and legacy of iconic artist Halima Nałęcz . The plaque is set to be mounted at 5 Porchester Place in London’s Connaught Village which was the site of one of her most renowned galleries, Drian.

James Parker – Commercial Real Estate, at the Church Commissioners comments: “Green Plaques commemorate the diverse cultural heritage of Westminster and the people who have made lasting contributions to society. We feel very proud that Westminster City Council has granted us this plaque and look forward to the unveiling.”

Halima Nałęcz forged her path through the London art scene of the 1960s and worked for more than 40 years as a promoter of new and emerging artists. During this time, she helped to jump-start many high profile careers and became an accomplished artist herself. An avid supporter of the arts, Halima had a strict rule that she would buy work by someone else to add to the Drian’s permanent collection for every painting of hers sold. By 1983, this rule meant she could donate a staggering 565 works to Polish national museums, including 80 of her own.

Councillor Paul Swaddle – Cabinet Member for Finance and Smart City, said: “I am very pleased to announce this green plaque in honour of Halima Nalecz on International Women’s Day. Halima Nałęcz was a true pioneer within the art industry, and this plaque will be a lasting tribute to her extraordinary life and immeasurable contribution to Westminster’s cultural heritage.”

A further announcement confirming the date of the plaque unveiling is due to be shared soon as well as proposed plans for celebratory events to take place within the village. Connaught Village has a longstanding history and affiliation with the arts and it is an ongoing objective of the Church Commissioners to promote the many existing art galleries and creatives who reside there as well as actively seeking to bring more public installations to the area – such as recent lighting exhibits Wavelength and The Tree of Love, Joy and Hope  . To find out more about the artists and galleries in the village visit www.connaughtvillage.com

Halima Nałęcz
Born in 1914 in Antonowo, near Vilnius (then, still part of Poland) she arrived in England in 1947 and became a prominent part of the London art scene of the 1960s, subsequently working as gallerist and painter for the next forty years. She gave the first major exhibitions in the UK to John Bellany, William Crozier, Michael Sandle, Leon Zack and Joseph Lacasse – amongst so many more. The gallery held its final exhibition – the last of over 320 – in 1989 although it continued to trade until 1998, ten years before Halima’s death on 25 September 2008, at the age of 94. Her husband Zygmunt, who had supported her throughout the gallery’s history, had died in 1985, aged 80.

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