“Amazing that this is here, a much needed space – well done.” Senior Curator, Tate Gallery.

“It has an exciting and innovative participatory programme of activities designed to attract diverse audiences.” Justine Simons – Deputy Mayor – GLA

“What you are doing here is forward thinking and fantastic.” Head of Multi-Media, INIVA.

“Usurp is an artist-led gallery and studio that punches above its weight.” Evening Standard.

“Our local arts spaces can be the lynch pin of local communities; somewhere that brings people together to enjoy art, and gets people directly involved in the artistic process. We are pleased Usurp has taken this opportunity.”
Executive Director, Arts Council England.

Usurp Art, founded in 2000, launched the Usurp arts space and studios in 2010 to develop opportunities for communities to engage with artists, musicians, poets, filmmakers, activists, writers, performers and designers. Open to experimental ideas in all media, we support creatives to collaborate in research and action, and actively encourage a wide range of audiences to participate in the creation of artworks that challenge conformity, prejudice and discrimination.  Converted from a classic suburban 1930’s butcher’s shop, we have created an arts hub for meeting, learning, exchange and thinking. Usurp is the only artist-led space in the London Borough of Harrow, a borough with a dynamic demographic of the most diverse languages spoken in the UK and 60% BAME communities. Since 2012, Usurp has been an accredited member of Film Hub London, part of the BFI Audience Network, and is a BFI neighbourhood cinema. Our creative learning projects have been graded by Ofsted as “excellent and outstanding”. 

Artistic Director: Poulomi Desai
Strategy and Development: Simon Underwood
Chairperson: Denesh Bhabuta
Administrator: Kiran Shah

Kiran Shroff
Kiran Shroff

Associate Artists and gallery support group: Najma Akhtar, Seth Ayyaz Steve Beresford, Neelu Bhuman, Paul ChiversSuman Buchar, Kwesi DarkoAniruddha DasVeronica GrassiJames HolcombeReynir Hutber, Matt Jordan, Natalie Leer, Nikki Lucas, Sba Shaikh, Kiran Shroff, Seema Sodhi.

Our aims are to:

  • Support and nurture artistic experimentation and exploration.
  • Facilitate collaborations and discussions between artists and communities.
  • Provide facilities for artists to work individually and collaboratively across art forms and discourses.
  • Offer training and professional development to artists and organisations.
  • Engage audiences with diverse and risk-taking arts practices.
  • Challenge prejudice and discrimination, and make a positive contribution to our environment.
  • Provide creative learning opportunities to local people of all ages and from a range of economic, social and cultural backgrounds.

Usurp Art thanks the funders and organisations we have worked with for their support:

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Safe Spaces Policy
Usurp Art wants you to feel safe and to be safe at our events. We operate the following Safe Spaces Policy. The most important thing we want you to know is that if something or someone makes you feel uncomfortable at one of our events, no matter how minor it seems, you can report it to us.
Harassment of event participants, audience, staff or volunteers at Usurp Art events will not be tolerated and anyone violating this policy at our events may be expelled. Harassment includes offensive verbal comments or attitudes related to gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, disability, physical appearance, body size, race, religion; deliberate intimidation, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, sustained disruption of the event, inappropriate physical contact, and unwelcome sexual attention. Participants asked to stop any harassing behaviour are expected to comply immediately. The team views neither ignorance nor intoxication as an excuse for unacceptable behaviour. If anyone engages in harassing behaviour towards you, the Usurp Art team will take any action they deem appropriate, including warning the offender or expulsion from the event (with no refund). If you feel you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns, please contact a member of our team (visibly wearing purple lanyards) at the event immediately. The team will be more than happy to assist those experiencing harassment to feel safe for the duration of the event. Usurp Art also accepts that we are not above our own policies so please know all of the above applies to all members of our team in equal measure. If there are ever any aspects of our events which you feel is offensive or makes you uncomfortable please inform us. If you’d like to discuss our safe policies or have any concerns about feeling comfortable at our events, please contact us. All communication related to this policy will be dealt with in confidence. With thanks to Cinema For All for the policy.