By the time the mysterious and enigmatic Madge Gill (1882-1961) made her home in Newham aged 40, her disjointed and eventful life had paved the way for her to begin an incredible creative journey that spanned the rest of her life.
During Gill’s time in Newham she drew, painted and embroidered approximately 5,000 pieces of work. Following her death in 1961, Gill’s son donated a huge amount of her work to the Newham Borough Archives, where 1500 artworks remain housed to this day.
Creating art despite the odds, her work has been long overlooked due to her position as a working class woman known to suffer from mental health issues, while producing work with no formal training outside of the mainstream art world. It is now a vital time to shine a light on her remarkable story and celebrate her artistic legacy in the borough where she produced such a prolific body of work.
Explore Madge Gill’s life in Newham with the self-guided walking trail to download here.
Walking time: Approx 50 mins
Map design by Sophie Dutton & Hannah Montague.