198 Contemporary Arts and Learning

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198 seeks to enhance the cultural perceptions of the wider community through the comprehension and appreciation of culturally diverse visual art. It aims to provide a platform for a new and fresh visual art language that represents the cultural diversity of British society and give the opportunity for an analysis and appreciation of this work through interpretation and education.

The 198 Gallery was established in 1988, after the Brixton riots, to support the work of black artists by meeting their needs for exhibition space.

198 Contemporary Arts and Learning is now a venue for artists from diverse cultural backgrounds and has gained a profile for innovative issues-based exhibitions and critically acclaimed work in the field of multicultural art education.

Whether it is interpretation, interaction or integration, art education has a key role to play at the center of urban regeneration in a multicultural society. The 198 Gallery Education Policy is to provide a local resource to the community, and to schools and colleges in the delivery of the National Curriculum. Our core aim is to provide knowledge and experience in the contemporary arts from diverse cultural backgrounds and relate it to new technologies and forms of cultural expression.

Central to our work with schools and colleges is the 198 Gallery’s ‘Education through Exhibitions’ programme which is based on residences and exhibitions by contemporary visual artists from diverse cultural backgrounds. These projects consist of a series of four gallery and school based artist led workshops that integrate the Attainment Targets in Art and enable participants to make their own work informed by the work of practising artists.

The work produced by participants in the programme is exhibited at the 198 Gallery during the annual Schools Exhibition. All projects are supported by information packs for use by Teachers’ in schools or colleges. The 198 Gallery has an extensive archive of information packs, slides and videos from past exhibitions available as a resource to teachers.

Venue Type:


Opening hours

Please check before visiting.

Admission charges

Free admission

Collection details

Archives, Decorative and Applied Art, Film and Media, Fine Art, Photography, World Cultures

Key artists and exhibits

  • The 198 Gallery seeks to give emerging artists an opportunity to exhibit their work and has contributed to the career development of artists who are now established and known internationally. The gallery is also committed to developing projects in partnership with other organisations on a local, national and international level.
  • Locally the 198 Gallery has worked with a diverse range of community organisations such as MENCAP, The Somali Women’s Group, various NHS Trusts and Schools in the development of exhibitions and Art Education projects. We consider our role as a resource for the local community to be central to our work.
  • A number of exhibitions developed by the 198 Gallery have toured to venues nationwide. Most recently, 'Mechatronic Circus' by Fernando Palma Rodriguez resulted in a collaboration with Oriel Mostyn Gallery, Wales and is being shown at venues throughout the UK. Other past partner organizations have included The South London Gallery, The Horniman Museum, London and Spacex Gallery.
  • The 198 Gallery has also had an international focus since its inception in 1988. Exhibitions such as The Elders and African Planes have been the result of collaboration with international institutions. Future plans include projects in Jamaica and Mexico.

198 Contemporary Arts and Learning
198 Railton Road
Herne Hill
Greater London
SE24 0LU






020 7978 8309


020 7737 5315

All information is drawn from or provided by the venues themselves and every effort is made to ensure it is correct. Please remember to double check opening hours with the venue concerned before making a special visit.