Emmanuel Unaji & Matilde Merli 2 260421.

ArtULTRA and The Hari have partnered to offer two emerging artists the opportunity to have a residency at the hotel. Situated in the residential streets of Belgravia, cultural legacy meets eccentric wit The Hari is a five-star hotel with art firmly in its DNA. Through the exposed brick walls of the lobby, library, bar and terrasse, The Hari hosts an impressive collection of contemporary works on a curated rolling programme.


The one-month residency at The Hari took place from 26 April to 21 May 2021. From 24 June to 1 November 2021, both artists will exhibit their work throughout The Hari Bar, as well as in the large window at the front of the hotel. The exhibition will showcase approximately 11 artworks created during the artists’ residency.


MATILDE MERLI @wacamanatuchu


Matilde Merli grew up in northern Italy and has been living in London for the last five years. She is currently studying Illustration and Visual Communication at the University of Westminster. Although it isn't until now that she formally developed her practice, art has been part of Matilde's life for a long time. Her practice is rooted in her life experiences and emotions, which have been ranging from anger, disappointment, suffering, but also joy, hope, and curiosity.


Materiality is very important in Matilde's work; combining traditional materials with discarded materials and objects in her installations and artworks. Matilde used the residency to work out a lot of emotions accumulated over the past few months, using this period as one of 'catharsis on canvas', continuing her  experimentation with materials, mixing acrylics with found or recycled elements like ash, glue or waste.

Emmanuel Unaji.jpg

EMMANUEL UNAJI @eman_unaji


Emmanuel Unaji studied fashion design and gained a BA (Hons) in Fine Art at Kingston University in London where he currently lives. Emmanuel founded his design company Unaji&Co in 2017, which fuses his artistic talent and commercial flair. A multidisciplinary artist inspired by the fashion industry and its icons, he uses fragments of magazine photographs to which he adds painted, drawn or sculpted elements. 


During the residency, Emmanuel studied the contradictory essence of images and reality; asking: Is what we see a reflection of what the subject experiences ? By combining illustration, drawing and painting, the series mechanically deconstructs selected images to illustratively reverse-engineer the unconscious bias applied to protagonist’s within painting and photography.


Dive into Matilde and Emmanuel's creative worlds during their five-week residency

Matilde Merli interview 10 May 2021

Emmanuel Unaji Work in Progress 7 May 2021

Directed & Filmed by Lemuel Unaji, Produced by UNAJI&Co 

Directed & Filmed by Lemuel Unaji

Produced by UNAJI&Co 

Emmanuel Unaji interview 10 May 2021

Matilde Merli - Work in Progress 9 May 2021

Produced by ArtULTRA 

Matilde Merli's studio @The Hari