Meet Nicole-Rose Munhawa, the artist and designer behind Theatre Deli's Leadenhall Street venue, which opened in July 2022.

White perspex screen in front of a light covered with monochrome patterns designed by Nicole-Rose. Colourful abstract painting in a black frame Door to Studio 8 at Theatre Deli. Through window you can see purple triangle designs in studio. To right of window you can see complimentary abstract patterns including words such as 'joy' A piano sits infront of a lift, the wall of which is covered in fun abstract designs by Nicole-Rose
My path to becoming an artist and designer
 
Art is in my DNA and ingrained so deeply in who I am as a person, and it contributes to how I navigate this world. There is no specific time I remember picking up a paint brush or pencil or even deciding to be an artist, I just knew it was my purpose to pursue it. I grew up surrounded by artists, musicians, educators & creatives of every type so art felt as natural as learning to walk & talk. My father and his brothers are incredible artists and that passion and talent was passed on to my siblings and me. I followed my big brother around like a hornet as soon as I saw him gain an interest in art that was beyond a hobby and wanted to do exactly as he did until I found my own identity as an artist. I remember falling in love with Jean Michel-Basquiat's work and finding a real connection to his ethos of using art as a means to narrate life. It wasn't until I had my daughter that I realised that I had to pursue art full time (and show her that doing what you love is far more meaningful than anything else) - so I quit my job and quit familiarity and comfort and that has been the best decision I've made in ages. Aside from being able to create every day, so many opportunities have come my way and allowed me to have enough experience to tackle a mammoth task such as Theatre Deli (Leadenhall). My path has been rocky and difficult and confusing at times but I'd never change a single thing if it means I get to create, imagine, inspire and play every day.
 

My Inspiration

 
My grandparents who instilled hard work and passion in me. My daughter who inspires me to play and be immersed in whatever I do. Nature for causing me to stop and participate fully in the life I live. My friends who are so creative and devoted to their crafts so I feel obliged to do the same. My family for the DNA, support, encouragement and for showing me that there is nothing impossible if you believe with enough conviction and have enough courage to pursue your passions with audacity. 
 

My process 

 
To be in my element, I need music and a blank canvas, wall or piece of fabric or anything I can paint on. I don't plan what a painting/project is going to look like, I tend to let my imagination run riot and let inspiration flow and consider the use of the space or consider the personality of the client I'm working with. My process adapts depending on the project at hand.
Nicole-Rose, a Black woman with an afro wearing a flowery dress and Converse shoes, smiles and sits on a bench in front of her artwork at Theatre Deli
Find out more about Nicole-Rose Munhawa on her Instagram: @artby_nicole.rose

Explore Theatre Deli Leadenhall Street 

Haven't visited our Leadenhall Street space yet? Explore with the lovely Jack from our Front of House team...