My new studio in Soho / by Michele Del Campo

The artist studio is a magical place, because it is where creativity runs free and takes shape. Diderot suggested that in order to grasp the profound meaning of an artwork one should see the studio where it has been created, spying on atmospheres, rituals, secrets. The size of a studio, the shape, the lighting, the location, the distance from home, all of these characteristics can have a big influence on the development of an artist's work. On the other hand, the artist intervenes on his working space to adapt it to his own creative needs, so, given a similar space, every artist will have a very different studio. Until few weeks ago I had always had my studio incorporated to my home, I could hardly think about living separated from my painting. I needed to have everything under control at all times, I could work at the times that I wanted, whether by day or by night, everything I needed was always there, at a door's distance.

Lately, however, I started to feel that a big room in my flat was not enough anymore for my needs and I decided to look for an even bigger space in London, although that meant that I would have to start commuting every day. I was also looking for a more socially stimulating environment, a place with other artists, where inspiration, experience and ideas circulate more easily.

Buildings dedicated to host artists studios normally are situated in more peripheral areas, often old factories converted into working spaces for artists. However my research coincided with the release, by an organization, of a great newly converted building in the middle of Soho, the sparkling heart of the city, to be wholly rented to fine artists. Among the big pile of applications from many artists there was mine, but I was lucky enough to be chosen to get one of the only thirteen available studios. Among my neighbours in the building are illustrious artists by the name of Neil Gall, Mark Wallinger, Laura Oldfield Ford, Nils Norman, Merlin Carpenter and Annie Kevans. It has taken a long time and effort to set up my new studio and now I look forward to start a new season with a new painting project.