Friday, 18 December 2020


This is the last episode of Gate Kicks!! for this year 2020. Richie Rich, Labake and Duane aka Mr Amazing shared their Christmas experiences and music. The show includes an excerpt of the latest Reynols album "Gona Rubian Ranesa" just released in December this year and also the great track called NHS Heroes by Theophilus Oluwafifehami Ajaji.

Thank you to all our listeners and we wish you a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!



Tuesday, 15 December 2020

Gate Kicks! - 9.12.20.

 It's our coming close to the end of the year; time to wrap up and reflect, enjoy;

Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Gate Kicks! Jamaica Special (2/12/20)

 This weeks' Gate Kicks! episode is a Jamaica! special to mark our experimental improvising group's new release on Cafe Oto's digital label TAKUROKU (pictured below) which can be downloaded here: JAMAICA! – Leon ← Cafe OTO. The show features a snippet of this release along with other Jamaica! recordings.

And here's the archived version of today's show:

Wednesday, 25 November 2020

Our tribute to our friend Leon Moody (31.1.69 - 25.10.20)

We recently said goodbye to our good friend Leon Moody, a kind, gentle and remarkable man who inspired great affection in everyone he met who will be missed greatly by all of us at the Gate. Leon has been a key contributor in almost everything we've done in the past 15 years or so that he attended the Gate; he was a natural charismatic actor in our video drama sessions, a methodical, thoughtful visual artist and a key musician in all our musical projects providing the bass for most of our traditional band set-ups (including as part of the 2Decks band) and as a lynchpin of our experimental, improvising ensemble Jamaica!

Given his role as a key member of Jamaica! when we were recently asked to provide music for Cafe Oto's digital label Takuroku we decided to submit an old recording that heavily featured Leon and to let it serve as a dedication to him. This recording can be found here and can be heard in the snippet below.

So farewell Leon, thank you for all you did for us as a friend and as a collaborator, rest easy bud.

"I've knew Leon for a long time but in 2015 he joined my band as the Bass player. We played all over London together and also in Brighton. He was a really nice guy who never complained and was always smiling. I have lost a great musician and a good friend." 2Decks

"Leon was a really nice guy. I remember I went to see him when he was sick once and because we both smoke i would take him outside for a smoke together. I will miss him a lot, he was a good friend to everyone and a really nice guy to be around. I can't believe that he's gone." Mandy.

"Thanks for being a great band member, you were a highlight of the band for as long as I can remember and I thank you for creating some sweet memories." Josh.

"Thank you for being a great friend, we will all miss you. We will always remember you. Thank you for all the music, i feel like you are up in heaven playing your bass and smiling down on everyone." Labake.

Thursday, 12 November 2020

Gate Kicks 11.11.20 - Featuring the Mumby Wolves

Here's our latest episode of our radio show this time featuring The Mumbly Wolves, an inclusive band from Croydon which features friend of the Gate, and ambassador for learning disabled music and musicians, Alan Courtis - for more on Alan and the Mumbly Wolves project please see this article he wrote for The wire magazine.

Thursday, 15 October 2020

Gate Kicks! new shows back on Resonance.

 Our Radio Show has been on hiatus whilst covid has been playing havoc with everything,  however, from this week forward we will be broadcasting new shows on our regular spot every Wednesday at 1.30PM -tune in on

In this latest show from yesterday Ritchie plays some his favourite tunes and Duane plays some of the tunes he has been creating to keep himself busy whilst locked down at home. Also featured are a couple of tunes by long time friends of the Gate The Carbonators, a band of musicians with and without learning disabilities from Croydon. 


Friday, 9 October 2020

Black History Month: Our resident Hip-Hop artist 2Decks on some of the black artists who have inspired his own work.

My Name is Darren aka 2decks and I'm a rapper and producer with mild learning disabilities. I started rapping between the age of 13 and 14 and learning to make my own music when i was 18 at a project called Big Bang to the Music Scene which was a project set up in Hammersmith and Fulham for young people in the borough who were interested in making music. I started coming to the Gate in 2003 and have been making music there ever since. The fist album I released was breakdown in 2009 and in 2012 I released the Wacky Baccy EP. Over the years i've played the Southbank Centre, The Albany, Brighton Dome, the Sonic Protest Festival in Paris and many others and at a festival attached to the 2017 olympics which was something I always that I always wanted to do so I could represent the disabled community.

Mainly by music is Hip-Hop based but I've also set up a band with other musicians from the gate (Leon, Josh and Roberto) and that's a bit more of a rock/rap crossover.

I think black history month is important because I live in the UK where history is mainly stuff like the battle of Hastings and the victorian times but you never really hear much about black historical people. And one of the things I think black people have contributed to a lot is music and also politics like Malcolm X and Martin Luther King but i'd like to talk about mainly about some of the black musicians. I think music has been very important for black people because It's been a way that they can make an impact on the world and have our voices heard because it's how we express our culture and our way of life.

The first artist who inspired me was MC Hammer and Public Enemy and last and not least OutKast and british hip-hop artists from Back in the day like Overlord X , silver bullet and MC Duke and also other artists outside of hip-hop like james brown.

I'd like to talk about these and give a favourite track from each and why I like them.

MC Hammer was the first ever artist I heard and when I heard it for the first time i had never heard Hip-hop before and I really liked his baggy trousers and his music videos. The song I heard was turn this mutha out which was released in 1988. Compared to how rap sounds now it's still a old school classic. MC Hammer sounds a bit like a preacher when he raps and he does things from his own point of view and I think a lot of my rapping is quite similar to his.

Public Enemy are another inspiration to me and a great band because they're very powerful and political and they tell the truth about what happens to black people. They talked a lot about the oppression of black people and I definitely think they had a positive impact on raising awareness of black issues. My favourite song of theirs is Don't Believe the Hype. I think the main way they've inspired is the power they put into their music because they really let people know they're there and they're not going anywhere. I went to see Public Enemy in Camden and it was really cool because i met Chuck D outside of the venue and that was really cool.

Outkast i really like because I especially like their album Skantonia which mixes up singing and rap and I remember watching a video of theirs where they mixed up a choir and guitars and rap and this way they mixed up different styles of music was very influential to me and also how they present themselves in a larger than life way. My favourite song of theirs is BOB.

Of the British rappers Overlord X is my favourite and the reason why is one day I was going through my brothers records and I stumbled across a record called X versus the world with a sick cover with him holding a ghetto blaster and with loads of aliens and stuff in the background and I listened to it and it blew my mind and I thought is was really cool the choices they made to sample because they were slightly weird and not too obvious. Overlord X was the start of the whole Grime scene in the UK and it sounds different now but I definitely think he was a big influence. He was the first uk rapper i ever heard and this was important to me because it was cool hearing someone rapping with the same accent as me so that made me think that I could do hip hop too.

James Brown is one of those guys who is really funky and when I first heard his music from back in the day like soul power i just thought it was amazing because it really grabs your attention and it's really in your face. James Brown uses a style of music he called "rhythm of the one" which is the way the band all work together and do things in unity and synch up with each other really quickly. I really like how he interacts with his band and his audience and I really studied how he performs on stage and how he uses the stage and how he get the crowd going and have definitely worked some of that into my own performances.

Friday, 4 September 2020

Installation at Peak Gallery, Elephant and Castle Shopping Centre 24-28.8.20

 Please see below for animated gif documentation of our recent installation at The Peak Gallery in the iconic Elephant and Castle Shopping centre as part of their Distant Peak response to the Covid crisis. The installation was developed collaboratively during our Zoom art sessions and included video reflections to the lockdown and other pressing global issues from our artists presented on three screens viewable through gaps in the main window display. Many thanks to everyone at Peak for inviting us and to all who stopped to have a look.

Monday, 27 July 2020

Covid and lockdown had a big impact on the lives of the attendees of The Gate.

 Not only was their social life and support network disrupted, but they were also robbed of an ongoing opportunity to express themselves creatively through arts, music and literacy.

All sessions at The Gate came to a halt, leaving attendees isolated, bored and without a space where creative outlet was encouraged and supported. After a period of discussions amongst the arts facilitators and the Service Users of The Gate we all agreed that it was vital to restart the arts sessions, albeit in a different format.

 Since then we have started to meet up online every Wednesday for a couple of hours, mixing chatting with art making, hearing about everyone's ideas and about what they have been creating during lockdown, as well as discussing what they would like to make and where to take future projects.

 Using video call software to connect obviously has its drawbacks: Only one person can speak at a time and there is a visual- and audio delay. Also, some people have to share one device as a group, or the only device available is a phone, which compromises people’s experiences of the call and people may not be able to contribute in the way they would in a real-life setting at The Gate. Despite these hurdles and drawbacks it has been great to be in a “room” together to create art, have a chat and socialise..

 Our current art class group is Leon, Labake, Duane, Ritchie, Glenn, Jackie, Michael, Terry, Roy, Simon and Lena and myself. Seb, Jane, Giovanni and Adam drop in for visits.

 As people might know, Labake is an Avid Sims player and inspired the group to create a video game by and for The Gate. We started this pre lockdown, planning out characters and scenarios on paper, but also using the app to create sprits that we would put in our video game.
As we are now forced to work exclusively online, we thought it would be a good opportunity to focus on this video game. As some of the devices used by our artists don't let them access these apps and the video call at the same time, we had to find creative ways to overcome these technical problems: 

Some attendees who can use these apps will draw from instructions whilst we screen share their actions in real time. Others will resort back to IRL drawings with pen on paper. We will then photograph their work remotely through the computer screen and collage them into the collaborative drawings.
We used the online collaborative drawing tool to collage together our artists’ IRL pen-on-paper drawings and the digital drawings.

Before the Covid crisis we had an exhibition lined up at Peak Gallery in Elephant and Castle shopping centre in London This couldn't happen because of the virus, so we decided to create a socially distant exhibition instead. Visitors and passer-bys walking through the centre will be able to enjoy the exhibition by peaking through the windows of the gallery. Our plan is to print our collaborative drawings on a large format so they fill the entire window and door of the gallery.

There will be peepholes cut into the drawings which allow visitors to look into the gallery where we will have videos looping on monitors. Some of the videos we will be screening include: Quarantine radio hour video - weekly talk radio show made by members of The Gate.
  Glenn Miller's vlogs where they discuss coming out as trans, racial justice and what they eat in a day.

Richies Youtube where he vlogs about football, buffy and quarantine


 Duane aka Mr Amazing’s Tik Tok dance videos and new music from his soundcloud

A slideshow containing all the images from our instagram - Draft of our imagined window installation at Peak Gallery

Our proposal to Peak -

 We propose a poster/vinyl that covers the whole of the gallery window and glass on the door.

The poster would have holes at different heights, allowing people to look into the empty gallery space where we would position monitors showing slide shows of the work made by artists at The Gate.

 As we are in lockdown and no longer have access to The Gate , thus having to work remotely with our artists, we are using online video calls and collaborative drawing software to make art together. 

The picture attached is an example of one of our collaborative drawings using a mixture of collage works people have created, as well as the online digital drawing tools.

 We have been discussing what it means to be a disabled artist in this time and the relationship between the lack of funding to services and the impact of gentrification. We have also explored the disproportionate effects of these problems on black people and other ethnic minority groups in the UK. We have spoken specifically about the future demolishment of the E&C shopping centre and how it would displace poorer communities for the purposes of profiting the rich.

 Through these conversation we came up with some titles and slogans we would use in the poster:

 Is this the world we want to live in?

 What kind of world do we want to live in?

 What about us?

 Its 2020, not 1820

 Grow up

 The Exhibition will happen at the end of August 2020 and run for two days.

Friday, 26 June 2020

Lockdown Lowdown - An Update

Coronavirus and lockdown has had a big impact on the lives of the attendees of activities at The Gate. Not only were the routines of our Service Users disturbed, but a good percentage of them suddenly found themselves in a very isolated position with little contact to the outside world, as well as friends and health - and social care professionals. The Gate has always been a hub for learning disabled artists in the West London area and beyond. It is a place to meet, create, maintain social networks, form relationships with outside agencies, as well as find guidance when it comes to housing and health- and social care issues.

Thanks to a grant from Hammersmith United Charities, secured by Certitude, we've been able to carry on our work for our client base of 20-25 people.

Here’s a brief update about what we've been up to recently -

We've started twice weekly online art classes via Zoom, with plans to create a Gate video game. Have a look at Duane's Sonic The Hedgehog, pictured below.

We've been sending out packs of art materials for our artists to use whilst in lockdown.

Arts Facilitator Seb has been delivering these packs on his bike

This was covered in an article in The Guardian too.

We put together another activity sheet ,following the sheet about Judith Scott. This one was based on the work of some of our contributors. You can view and download it here

Gate Kicks has temporarily changed into ‘Quarantine Radio Hour’ (christened by Richie) - a trimmer 10 minute-ish version of the usual 30 minute show. You can catch the show on Resonance FM too. Here's the latest two episodes! Depending on who's available, the show is recorded either on the telephone, or via Zoom, or a combination of both.

Leon has been painting & drawing regularly outside of our twice weekly online art classes. He's also been writing stories and playing the bass. Look out for a feature on his painting in an upcoming radio / video show.

This image prompted the creation of an entire character - Polton the Extra-Terrestrial - listen to an interview with Polton here - 

There's been some great fashion designs too from John, Mary and Wayne. The Gate are collaborating with Stanley Picker Gallery / Kingston University.

 Stuart, has been busy writing lyrics for a forthcoming heavy metal project!

Tuesday, 5 May 2020

Mr Amazing - Smooth It Over

Duane aka Mr Amazing put this song together in isolation using his guitar, a keyboard and the sounds of his washing machine and microwave. Video is a supercut of his dance moves from his own instagram profile - Co-ordinated on Whatsapp. Everything mashed together using Ableton
Lyrics - "Smooth it all over I swear this life is like the sweetest thing I've ever known It's just what comes with the fame And I'm ready for that, I'm just saying You need to get your shit straight The step in my groove I would give my world to lift you up You got the kind of lovin' that can be so smooth, yeah" DONATE TO THE GATE'S COVID 19 FUND AND MORE HERE -

Monday, 4 May 2020

Quarantine Video Hour - Episode 6 - Richie

For this episode Quarantine Radio Hour becomes Quarantine Video Hour as Richie discusses some of the TV programmes that have been preventing boredom setting in too much, enjoy:

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Wednesday, 29 April 2020

Labake isolation art and profile.

Labake's garden.
This time round the focus is on Labake. Labake has been coming to the Gate for around ten years, she is a key person in the group and likely the first person you'd come across on a visit as she loves meeting new people and making them feel welcome, often with a song if you happen to have visited in a group big enough to constitute an audience.

Living room.
One thing Labake really loves to do is sing and she can often be heard wandering round Shepherds Bush singing her songs at the top of her voice. Usually her songs are autobiographical and reflect some aspect of her life or often they have a social theme like the anti knife crime song in the video below (filmed by ace photographer Harley Weir on a recent photoshoot we attended for The Face Magazine) which on a recent trip to Scotland Yard Labake sang to the police commissioner Cressida Dick. 
Dining room.
Generally though they're more directly autobiographical, songs about her experiences as both a physically  and learning disabled mother of two or her or her Nigerian heritage, and often these themes also inform her visual art too. Under normal circumstances she can usually be found during gate art sessions constructing large sculptures out of cardboard boxes, or found objects (often toys like the dolls that she painted black and gave braided hair too), but since the isolation period began she has been busy drawing pictures of the home she shares with her family, examples of which can be seen here.


Front room.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Wednesday, 22 April 2020

John Isolation art and profile

John's bed
John is one of the newer members of the Gate and has only been coming to the centre for the last couple of years or so. He's a thoughtful, contemplative guy who can often be found in the "chill out" room at The Gate quietly observing the decidedly unchilled chaos around him. The artwork John creates reflects this close observation and often take the form of depictions of objects around him such as the pictures shown here drawn whilst isolating of his bed and his beloved IPad.
John's IPad.

It was John's Ipad which facilitated his Art book Food, a collection of the food photography which we produced with him in 2018. The book is a collection of some of the thousands of images  John has taking over the last few years documenting his eating habits. John literally photographs everything he eats, meticulously and painstakingly arranging every meal or snack and then photographing but only after very careful consideration and often with much rearranging when the shot doesn't suit. The book was produced in an edition of 200 with an introduction by art critic Kari Rittenbach for the ICA's independent book fair which John attended and was a great success; we returned with only a handful of copies and it's probably overdue a reprint.

John's Book at the ICA Small Publishers Fair 2018

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Tuesday, 21 April 2020

Quarantine Radio Hour - Episode Five - Darren

Following on from yesterday's profile here is Darren's Quarantine Radio Hour Episode where he talks about his thoughts about the current situation and presents some of his favourite tunes including bangers from DJ Shadow and Public Enemy and also of course sneaks in a couple of his own -

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Monday, 20 April 2020

Darren Isolation music and profile.

Darren with Public Enemy's Chuck D
Darren is a key contributor to the Gate and is largely focused on the music side of things though has important input elsewhere too. Going under the name 2Decks Darren has been an active part of the learning disabled music scene in the UK for over a Decade, playing primarily in London and the South East but also appearing last year at the Sonic Protest festival in Paris (where he was also due to appear this year on the same night's billing as Lee Scratch Perry but this was unfortunately cancelled as a result of the current ongoing situation) and anyone who has seen him perform can attest to his power on a stage, as natural a performer as there has ever been with a commanding stage presence and an innate ability to work a crowd. Darren's main love is Hip-Hop music, particularly the UK originators such as Overlord X and much of his music takes that form with the odd bit of James Brown soul and showmanship thrown in for good measure.

Currently Darren's music takes 2 main forms; the solo output which Darren produces at home laying down the instrumental tracks on his laptop and most often then laying over vocals (though sometimes not). An example of this is the "soundtrack" below recorded recently whilst locked down.

The other form Darren's music takes currently is his band set up, joining up with other Gate members, Josh (guitar), Roberto (Drums/Backing Vocals) and Leon (Bass) to form a Rock/rap hybrid that brings the house down wherever it plays. See below for a prime example of this:


Darren says he is doing ok during the lockdown, he's playing on his Playstation 3 and has plenty of data on his mobile so can watch video's on youtube and browse the internet when he's bored or phone his sister when he needs anything.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Friday, 17 April 2020


We've created this Learning Disability Art module for Gate Members and support workers to use with their service users and also for anyone else who wishes join in (if you're home-schooling your kids why not introduce them to something a little different). 

Please find download to PDF version of the below GIF HERE.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Thursday, 16 April 2020

Duane's Quarantine Radio Hour and Isolation Art.

Duane is one of the younger Gate members, he's a good-natured, friendly presence there with his  enthusiasm and willingness to have a go at almost everything we do. He takes part in video drama, is actively involved in the arts sessions and fashion work and is a frequent performer in Jamaica!! our free music collective where he often provides a steady unchanging pulse on the one stringed guitar. He's most passionate about his songwriting though and his aspirations towards being a Hip-Hip/R'n'B star like his heroes like Eminem or Jay-Z.

Examples of Duane's songs can be heard here in the latest episode of our Quarantine Radio Hour series:

A Mr. Amazing "tag" drawn whilst in isolation.

Much of Duane's visual art is inspired by his love of street culture too and takes the form of graffiti styled text pieces usually of his "Tag name" Mr. Amazing like the one shown here.

Duane says he has been doing well during his isolation and has been looking after and hanging out with his family and being peaceful so is making the best off it. Says he is missing all his friends at the Gate especially Jamie who is his good friend and a kind guy but has been keeping in touch with some of them.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Tuesday, 14 April 2020

Labake Quarantine Radio Hour

Labake's turn to head the podcast - Featuring some of her favourite songs from her arsenal. Loki's been keeping busy doing masses of isolation art while we'll be showcasing soon.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Saturday, 11 April 2020

Richie Isolation art and profile

Ghanaian flag drawn whilst in isolation.
Watching TV on lockdown.
Richie is one of our newer regular members and has been coming to the Gate on a regular basis for a couple of years. Despite being newer than some though he is involved in a great deal of what we do there and besides his visual art he produces songs (which we'll feature in a future update), is one of the presenters on our Gate Kicks radio show, is a member of our free music collective Jamaica and also has much to say in the learning disability awareness training we provide as well as being an active member of our self advocacy group. 

The view from Richie's window
Much of Richie's visual artwork is autobiographical such as the Ghanaian flag presented above which reflects his heritage or the sculptural work he does at the centre which often based around his favourite television programmes or films (see the Harry Potter doll and bed presented here for an example of this).

Harry Potter doll and bed
Richie is a mellow guy who loves football Chelsea and music and though he keeps himself to himself to a certain extent is also up for a laugh with the other Gate patrons in the chill out room.

Richie says it has been difficult for him during the lockdown because he keeps hearing on the news about being people dying and it depresses him but also says he is doing okay and is watching lots of TV and films to keep himself busy and only going out if he really needs to.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Thursday, 9 April 2020

Mary Isolation Art and Profile.

A Mary text piece.
Mary's latest picture done whilst on lockdown is in some ways typical of the art she produces but Mary really isn't someone for whom adjectives like typical often apply and unlike many of the Gate artists there is a huge divergence within her work some of which you can see below. However, what often features in Mary's pieces is copied text and images, sometimes pulled randomly from books or newspapers or leaflets around her and sometimes, perhaps as here, something chosen perhaps more specifically, a guess would be that this image comes from literature given to her by the support workers in the house she lives in.

Mary's figures.
Mary is one of the Gate's mainstays having been a regular attendee for over 10 years and often being the first to arrive and likewise the first to leave. She's a keen contributor to almost everything that goes on there and often takes on a befriending role with gate members who need that. She is a prolific producer of visual art, often working in phases, like the time she spent six months or so drawing round a plastic fish as the centrepiece and embellishing from there or more recently the grid pieces she has created in felt tip.
Felt tip grid pictures.

Mary's output is far more varied than represented here though and we'll post more examples of this in future update's along with songs she has recorded and much more that she has produced over the years with us.

Dismantling a Macbook.

"You wash your hands because germs - don't touch your hair, eye, mouth cos you got germs on your hands. People go to hospital they not well and people were clapping for the nurses and doctors." Mary on current situation.

In order to access cash and continue working with Gate artists while the gate is closed and they are locked down we have set up a gofundme to purchase materials - please click following link if you would like to contribute -

Tuesday, 7 April 2020

GoFundMe - 54 The Gate Covid-19 Lockdown Fund

Obviously the Gate has had to close during the Covid-19 crisis to keep everybody and so all of our artists are now locked down without access to their usual creative outlets and social networks.

In an effort to ease the effects of isolation and to promote the wellbeing of the Gate artists we have embarked upon a programme to provide art materials and other necessities with the intention of enabling them to document their time locked down.

To do this we need easy access to funds to purchase these materials and that's where your donation would come in.

Please help us with whatever you can, every penny will help us.

And don't be shy if you think you might be able to help us in any other way, do get in touch.

See you on the other side of this.

Friday, 3 April 2020

Gate Kicks presents Quarantine Radio Hour - Episodes 1 & 2.

Here are the first of our broadcasts recorded remotely while the guys are isolating on lockdown.

First up is Richie:

And here is the second with Leon's views on face masks and various electronica selecctions;

More to come.

Thursday, 2 April 2020

Art In Isolation II

Here's something from Leon. Also, you can check his edition of our new mini-podcast series 'Quarantine Radio Hour' on Friday! Click here for that