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Yian, YIAN (Barber Jack and Sons)

  • Year Invented: 2018

Yian has had his barber shop on Portland Road for 7 years. His Dad owned the property in 1993 (known then as Barber Jack) and then sold to someone else who worked for him. But Yian made an offer on the property due to the sentimental value it held for him and took it on as Barber Jack and Sons in 2014. 

Yian used to play football in Cyprus and once upon a time wanted to pursue his passion. However, when he moved to the UK he trained to be a barber in the family business and has never looked back. He loves how his job allows him to meet new people. 

When Yian’s father had the property, he says that all of the shops were open. Yian proudly notes that his father had one of the first barber shops in the area. Yian would like to see more of the shops open and more diversity in the area catering to the diverse population of South Norwood. 

This project was part of the South Drawood exhibition in 2022 by artist Jonny Kemp. A community art project celebrating the people of South Norwood, SE25.

From autumn of 2021 to summer 2022, Jonny drew 40 portraits of independent business owners, volunteers, and other movers and shakers from South Norwood, his local area. His partner Lizzie interviewed them.

South Norwood is regenerating yet doesn’t want to gentrify: it wants to keep its character and support people who already live in the area to prosper. This was Jonny and Lizzie’s way of ‘giving South Norwood a hug’: by representing the diverse people of SE25 through portraits in fine liner pen, and their own stories.

The portraits were displayed in Stanley Arts, a beautiful Edwardian arts venue on South Norwood Hill. Over 150 people attended the opening night: Friday 29th July 2022.

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