Meet Sukai Eccleston

Interview with Sukai Eccleston at CasildART

We caught up with Sukai Eccleston at CasildArt to found out more about her business and some quick-fire questions.

1) What was the inspiration behind your business?

My passion for the visual arts and a deep frustration that I couldn’t easily find contemporary Black art led me to establish CasildART. I wanted to create a platform that celebrates and promotes the work of Black artists, providing them with the recognition and visibility they deserve.

2) What sets your business apart? Please describe a key feature or product you would love to highlight for the neighbourhood?

Our art gallery features diverse artwork across various mediums and genres, from mesmerising portraits to stunning ceramics. Currently, we are showing work by six artists from the UK, Africa, and the Caribbean exploring themes of migration, ancestorship, and environmentalism. But  CasildART is not just a gallery: we’re a vibrant multifunctional cultural hub that brings people together and celebrates the power of art to inspire, connect, and transform lives. We host guided tours, workshops, talks, and events to engage artists, art enthusiasts, and the wider community to foster dialogue and the creative exchange of ideas.  Additionally, the gallery is available to hire as an event space, providing a platform for artists and creatives, including poets, musicians, and photographers to hold their gatherings as well as corporates and organisations looking to entertain their clients and associates amidst the inspiring backdrop of our gallery.

3) What is a fun fact about your business that people may not know or be aware of?

I’m not sure if it is a fun fact, but the gallery is named after my great-grandmother, Casilda. Her name has an Arabic root, meaning “dwelling place,” which resonates deeply with the essence of art for me. Just as a home provides comfort and sanctuary, art has the power to evoke similar emotions, offering a sense of belonging and refuge. My great grandmother’s indomitable spirit and kindness continue to inspire me. Her legacy of resilience and strength is reflected in our mission to empower Black artists and create positive change through the visual arts.

4)What makes Connaught Village a special and unique area, and why should people visit?

The Village has got to be one of London’s best kept secrets. A hidden treasure right in the heart of London – just a stone’s throw from Marble Arch! Connaught Street has everything you need – fabulous boutiques, cute cafes, and art galleries – and it is so welcoming and friendly. Plus, Hyde Park is practically on our doorstep, if you fancy going for a leisurely walk or enjoying a picnic – weather permitting!

5)In addition to CasildART, what are 2 other places people should visit in Connaught Village?

That’s a tough one! There are so many cool places to visit, but if I had to narrow it down, I’d suggest checking out Mud at 11 Porchester Place which sells an elegant range of colourful handmade ceramics. Their unique pieces are works of art and totally functional. Another spot worth visiting is Kindare right next door to our gallery at 30 Connaught Street (we’re at number 32), Kindare is a must-visit if you’re in search of bespoke and inspiring additions to your wardrobe.

Quick-fire Questions:

  1. Coffee or tea? Tea – preferably green
  2. Saturday night out or Sunday morning in? Both! Saturday night, ideally, somewhere I can kick up my heels on the dance floor, but then Sunday morning to recover!
  3. Summer or Winter? Is that a serious question? Summer, of course.
  4. Cats or dogs? Dogs
  5. Salty or sweet? Sweet – did I mention how much I like Le Marxitu Basque cheesecake?
  6. Phone call or text message? Phonecall – I’m old school
  7. Pub or cocktail bar? Cocktail bar – if you’re interested mine is an Amaretto Sour
  8. Vacation abroad or staycation? Abroad – I’m a sun seeker.
  9. City or countryside? I’m a London Girl. City every time.
  10. Cook at home or takeaway? Nothing beats a home-cooked meal, but if you’re offering, I am not opposed to fine dining.

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