Heartless thieves take artworks worth £10k from non-profit platform promoting black female artists

https://www.getwestlondon.co.uk/news/west-london-news/heartless-thieves-take-artworks-worth-14371382

Getwestlondon news

Heartless thieves take artworks worth £10k from non-profit platform promoting black female artists

20 artworks were stolen from Black Blossoms founder, Bee Tajudeen’s, Ladbroke Grove home

The founder of a group promoting black female artists is “heartbroken” after up to £10,000 of work she was safeguarding was stolen from her Ladbroke Grove home.

Single-mum, MA student, and curator Bee Tajudeen discovered the 20 artworks had been snatched from a storage cupboard at her home in Wornington Road on Friday (March 2).

The 29-year-old had been looking after the works for 10 members of the Black Blossoms artists platform she founded, as they toured the UK with an exhibition.

Miss Tajudeen was in the process of organizing a London exhibition for the tour’s final stop when the works were stolen.

Miss Tajudeen, who has been working since 2015 to promote black women in the creative industries, said the theft feels like a “slap in the face.”

Speaking to getwestlondon on Monday (March 5), she said: “Because of the sort of organisation I run it just really really hurts – because we’re always talking about protecting black women’s intellectual property, our artwork – all of these things.

“It just feels like a slap in the face and it feels like I wasn’t able to protect them.

Miss Tajudeen founded Black Blossoms to promote black women in the creative industries (Image: Miss Tajudeen)

“I just want to try and do right by the artists from now on.”

In a statement posted on Black Blossoms’ Instagram account, Miss Tajudeen urged Ladbroke Grove residents to be “vigilant” and to help locate the stolen art.

Black Blossoms was on the final leg of its UK tour in London when the works were stolen (Image: Black Blossoms)

She wrote: “It is with deep sadness that I must release this sort of statement.

“On Friday my storage cupboard was burgled which resulted in the entire contents being stolen.

“This included over 20 items of artwork by artists in the Black Blossoms network, which they had entrusted in my possession since August 2017. I feel sick and heartbroken that this happened in a community that I have lived in all my life.”

Works by artist Lesley Asare were among those stolen (Image: Lesley Asare)

She added: “I would like to take this moment to give a sincere apology to all the artists that have been affected by this tragedy. I know what has happened is a violation of your creativity, time and resources. – I am so sorry.

“Not only have we built professional relationships, I consider all of you to be my dear friends. I hope this does not affect your faith in Black Blossoms.

“The local authorities have been informed and CCTV will be reviewed. In the meantime, I can assure you that I will do everything within my power to try and locate the missing items.

“Everyone in Ladbroke Grove and surrounding areas as well as art buyers, please if anyone approaches you to buy ANY artwork in these images do not hesitate to contact me or the police.

‘Not yours’ – work by Camilla Daniels (Image: Camilla Daniels)

“All the artwork has sentimental value and all my hard work and that of the artists has literally gone down the drain because of selfishness and greed.

“This feels like a personal attack on my brand as well as my livelihood. A year’s worth of hard work gone down the drain just like that. However, Black Blossoms will not be defeated.

“So again, I do implore all those in the community to be vigilant during this distressing time.

Sincerely,
Bee.”

A drawing by Rahana Dariah was among the stolen pieces (Image: Rahana Dariah)

No arrests have been made since the robbery that was reported to police on Friday.

A Metropolitan Police spokesman said: “Police were called at approximately 8:21am on Friday to reports of a burglary at a residential property in Wornington Road.

“Officers attended the scene.

“No arrests were made and enquiries continue.”

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