Bapou

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Drug dealer, armed robber, prisoner - artist, poet, youth worker.

Bapou reflects on Johnny’s journey as he strives to find his way from a hectic, drug-fueled, misspent youth - to contemporary fine artist. He reflects upon how much work he has put in to create a new life for himself and all the bumps in the road along the way.

Shot over a period of four years (2017-2021) we follow Johnny around his home town of North London as he tells us first hand his very personal tale.

Given a six year custodial sentence for armed robbery and possession with intent to supply in 2003 at the age of 19, prison had a profound impact on Johnny. Inside he found a love for art and eventually developed this passion into a personal practice and portfolio of works. Towards the end of his sentence he was granted a day release to attend an interview for a place at Central St. Martin’s school of art. He got accepted and passed with a first honors bachelor's degree three years later.

Johnny is now an established artist with a list of gallery shows and performances under his belt, who can count on fellow artist Jeremy Deller as a peer and mentor.

Directed and shot by Jackson Payne and Jack Layfield

Edit Jack Layfield
Sound design + mix Harry Springall
Location sound Joe Page-Brown
Colour Ellory Payne
Artwork Joe Page-Brown
Music ADSL Camels

Dedicated to Malik Ford - ‘Follow the path - you’ll be great buddy’

Thanks to Ben Crook

BAPOU