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The unsung heroes of Brick Lane at Rich Mix

Rich Mix Arts Centre in Bethnal Green – East London’s favourite spot for Brit-Asian cultural activities – has announced a new photographic exhibition honouring the long-unsung chefs of Brick Lane’s world renowned Indian curry houses.

The exhibition features a series of portraits by street photographer Jeremy Freedman, of the previously unseen faces of these award-winning chefs as well as the personal narratives of the Bengali community of Brick Lane.  

The chefs featured in the exhibition will put their usual friendly rivalry aside for the exhibition’s opening night on Thursday 23 February where they will present guests with their signature dishes.

Among the chefs featured will be Abdul Tahid of Papadoms, Daras Miya of Cinnamon, Jamal Uddin of Bengal Cuisine, Mohammed Salik of Eastern Eye Balti House, Abdul Forhad of Monsoon and Rana Miah the longest serving Curry Chef on Brick Lane.  

The exhibition’s photographs are featured in the forthcoming book, Spitalfields Life written by the Gentle Author, published by Saltyard Books, an imprint of Hodder & Stoughton on 1st March.
Photographer Jeremy Freedman’s ancestors were also immigrants, coming to Spitalfields from Holland in the eighteenth century. His great-great-great-great grandfather was one of the founders of Sandys Row Synagogue in 1854.

In the weeks leading up to the exhibition Rich Mix will host an online photo competition, asking people to tweet pictures that best represent their own Brick Lane curry experience.  The photos will be displayed on the Rich Mix Facebook as well as on the opening night with the winner receiving a curry-tastic prize.  

Tweet your pictures to @richmixlondon or email info@richmix.org.uk.

Spitalfields Life Exhibition
The Curry Chefs of Brick Lane; Photographic portraits by Jeremy Freedman
23rd February – 29th March 2012
Rich Mix, 35 – 47 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6IA

–   Vijitha Alles



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