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February 2, 2024 60 mins

Today I’m chatting to the swashbuckling artist and restaurateur Jonny Gent. We recorded this episode during a busy lunch service at Sessions Arts Club, Jonny’s inspirational restaurant in Clerkenwell. It’s fair to say that he’d emboldened himself with a few martinis beforehand and what ensued was a conversation that very much represents the man himself: unstructured, poetic and generous. 

Jonny’s a brilliant painter, and his artworks range from the sexualised and salacious to tenderly painted still-lifes that are a tribute to his late mother. After getting himself through art school, he met a casting director who wrote him a cheque for every painting he’d made. What followed was a journey that took him to more than 20 countries around the world, establishing art studios in everything from a cabin in Scotland to a tobacco factory in France. 

Now approaching his late 40s, he’s finally starting to put down some roots. As well as having a permanent home in London, Jonny spends a lot of time in the Scottish Highlands, where he’s opened a retreat for creatives called Boath House. Like Sessions Arts Club, it explores the confluence of art, food and music.  

Jonny says of his childhood, “I felt totally alone in what I found beautiful.” He begins by telling me about the Slow & Easy, the pub he grew up in, and the lasting impact of 500 strangers coming into your home every day. I hope you enjoy it!

This episode was recorded in person at Sessions Arts Club, London.

For more: 

Visit The Modern House website to see images of the spaces discussed in this episode

Check out Sessions Arts Club and Boath House

Take a look at Jonny Gent’s latest work

Production and editing: Hannah Phillips

Editing and mixing: Oscar Crawford

Graphic Design: Tom Young

Music: Father

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