West London business helps vendor David achieve art dream

The data science company decided to host an exhibition of the vendor's artwork after they learned of his talent

A London vendor’s striking artwork will go on display next week after he teamed up with an unlikely partner – Hammersmith data science company dunnhumby.

David Martin, 57, has already had one of his abstract pieces featured in The Big Issue and sold other works, mostly created using coloured card and bold colour combinations.

Joseph Falzon, senior creative and production lead at dunnhumby, helped drive the idea to host an exhibition for the vendor.

“It came about when a group of us from dunnhumby did the Centrepoint Sleep Out last November. After that we decided that it would be good to help someone specifically in our local community in some way.


The Big Issue magazine is a social enterprise, a business that reinvests its profits in helping others who are homeless, at risk of homelessness, or whose lives are blighted by poverty.

“Dominique Evans [a client manager] met Dave outside Tesco and was chatting to him and discovered that he was a budding artist.

“We then got the idea to host an exhibition of his work where he could sell prints. That way we felt that we would be helping him achieve an ambition whilst helping him to help himself. I’ve been chatting to him since to organise this event and am enjoying getting to know him.”

The vendor started working on his artwork while on placement through our charitable arm, The Big Issue Foundation, at the Northern Trust Bank in March 2016, inspired by his love of Henri Matisse’s work.

David, whose pitch is outside Tesco on Barb Mews, Hammersmith, is originally from Derby and has sold The Big Issue for eight years. He was featured in the Big Issue’s Street Art section last year – and an art-loving reader was quick to buy the piece.

The exhibition will be hosted at dunnhumby’s Brook Green office on the ground floor (Basecamp) on Monday July 29 from 1pm-5pm. Signed art prints will be available to buy or order for £35 each; anyone interested should contact HelpingHandsUK@dunnhumby.com.