The following account was written by Maria Tribe, the longest serving member of Studio 106, from 2005 to 2020.
Maria was the heart and soul, a guiding force and will always remain a close colleague and friend of all the members.
"Studio 106 had six founder members -Maria, Irene, Ricki, Karen, Keith and Di. We found the space in 2004 and it took a year of meetings with each other and solicitors to sort out the legalities, landlord negotiations and lease. We funded it ourselves and then on Feb 21st 2005 finally got the keys to a big empty room full of sawdust. So we had a lovely time sealing mouldy walls, pulling sawdust down from the rafters, building spaces and painting it. By now Henrik, Ant, Simon and Tony were on board with Heather, Dan and Griz soon after. After the first freezing winter we had to move out for a while for building work and they swapped the tin roof to the one we have now.
Our vision was that it would be a professional working artists studio and we would carefully choose members. We wanted to keep the open plan nature of the space and looked for people who would have a group collaborative mentality. People were available if you wanted but you could be quiet too. Over the years it has evolved into a lovely space and place to work (if a bit nippy in the winter!) with a strong community and some fantastic exhibitions. We dedicated the gallery space to Irene who sadly passed away in 2013 so The Irene Mensah Gallery was named during Brighton Festival 2016 - send us an email if you would like to be on our mailing list for future events."