small ads/classifieds/personals – the go-to place to get help whether you need money, a home, a plumber or a baby daddy . .

These noticeboards are anthropological treasures, they are a commentary about a particular neighbourhood and about our society in general: They describe loneliness and need. They show us who is vulnerable and where social power lies.

There’s a lot of everyday sexism on these boards. I’ve not yet seen an ad where a woman is offering a man somewhere to sleep in return for managing her home maintenance, and social needs

The notices themselves are short stories – often poignant, sometimes funny and occasionally disturbing. The materiality of each physical notice creates a sort of portrait of the person behind it, the materials used, the syntax, spelling mistakes, changes and updates, handwriting, the idiosyncratic use of a typewriter all add to the richness of the stories.

These marketplaces are a disappearing phenomenon, the internet is partly responsible for this but it is also clear that gentrification has tidied away this unruly mess of paper, card and Blu-Tac

I’ve made an artwork about shop window noticeboards- textile facsimiles of shop window notices – it can be seen at

sandie macrae -postROOM – 41 Ecclesbourne Road, N1 3AF open thurs – sat 12-6pm and by appointment.

The exhibition starts 24th May and runs until 17th June.


small ads seeking ‘relationships’ often make it clear that the woman’s role in the bargain is to provide housework, emotional support and presumably sex work in return for somewhere to sleep.


My collection of noteworthy small ads and classifieds goes back decades. I’ve been recreating some examples photographed in shop windows around the UK


at what point to we consider something to be ‘rubbish’ and how do we dispose of stuff?

Charity shops, repositories for mis-matched, slightly broken things offer endless possibilities for new relationships


From a series of collaborations exploring ideas of identity;  how we are perceived, how we perceive ourselves and how we might confuse or subvert expectations . This image was made with costume designer Pam Tait  in response to the idea that with ageing we are expected to become invisible. Earlier posts show further collaborations

Urban camouflage

from the hide/disguise series work-in-progress

Part of the  ‘camouflage’ series of images which addresses how we present ourselves and how we negotiate the idea that we must somehow ‘fit in’ but also ‘stand out’  from the crowd.