Bold Tendencies | Sculpture (car)park

In the unlikely setting of a multistorey carpark on Rye Lane, Peckham, is the most amazing sculpture park you are ever likely to visit. I know, bold statement, right? But this is a bold statement for project that is successfully altering, if not changing, the way in which we view contemporary, public art. Bold Tendencies, now in its sixth and biggest year, is a non-profit, summer sculpture park that brings together emerging international artists and provides them with a platform that catapults into public consciousness.

The space is not glamorous, white walled and “fabulous dahhhling”. It’s shabby, worn down and the stairwell still retains that certain car park odour. However, it is also a location that can legitimately claim to have the best view of London. The panoramic horizon is one that has been carefully punctuated and fractured by the positioning of huge, beautiful installations such as Byobu from Laura Buckley and Fountain I by Peles Empire. From certain angles the plethora of new, contemporary work can seem to be standing alongside the Gherkin, the Shard and the Millennium Dome.

The location of the project is intrinsically connected with the artwork it includes. Speaking to the artist Mary Redmond, the industrial nature of the space is vital to the experience of her work. The piece, Seven Split Overglide, combines bamboo and plasticised organic shapes with scrap metal that appears to have been blown in from across the neighboring railroad. Redmond explains that the piece has been inspired by the Glaswegian tower blocks and Le Corbusier styled buildings she used to live near as a child. As we speak, a train rushes by and dust, grit and hot air is blown through the space forcing the scrap metal and fake flowers in her work to tremble. This wind tunnel effect, says Redmond, is akin to that created in the towerblock carparks she would walk through as a child.

Bold Tendencies opened earlier this month and welcomed over 1,000 guests to its launch party. To find anyone willing to drop the Del Boy/Rodney stereotype of Peckham can be difficult, so 1,000 people for a first night? It must be pretty damn good.

Check back for reviews of events held at Bold Tendencies this summer. For more information visit the website here

To be continued…

All images courtesy of Bold Tendencies: Byobu Laura Buckley, Fountain I Peles Empire, Seven Split Overglide Mary Redmond.

Pop Up Bars for 2012 | Franks @ Peckham Carpark

Little Ghost’s deputy editor Freya Gosling is spending the summer working with Bold Tendencies, a now well-established sculpture park within Peckham Rye’s multi-storey car park, among the hustle and bustle of the area’s meat markets and music shops.

I can now safely say I am manly. I have blisters on my hands from putting up a roof….. *hrrrrrrrrrhhhhhhh!* Not a run of the mill boring roof either; I was helping raise the canvas roof of Frank’s Campari Bar, which has been present every year since Bold Tendencies sculpture project opened in 2007. Designed by Practice Architecture (Paloma Gormley & Lettice Drake) the bar is very urban, very cool and rather darn heavy.

The bar was recently included in the Evening Standard’s Top 5 pop up bars of the summer and we couldn’t agree more. Located amongst the sculptures by young, international artists the bar itself works to provide a platform for aspiring chefs and caterers. Check out their website here for more info

Frank’s Bar: the finished result

Minstrel & Chronicle | Hannah Barry Gallery

LG editor and bona fide story fanatic, Sian Gray, goes to the private view of ‘Minstrel & Chronicle’ the latest exhibition at Hannah Barry Gallery in Peckham

 

Salman Rushdie said that those who do not have power over the story of their lives- to retell it, rethink it, deconstruct it, joke about it, change it as times change, are powerless and cannot think new thoughts.

 

Discussing this with the LG team, it seems the storyteller is having a moment in the spotlight. We’ve heard journalists discuss the new public commentators who continually develop, debate and change news stories via discussion boards. The hugely successful actor, Mark Rylance, performed as Rooster in the hit West End play Jerusalem and brought to light the importance of imagination, ‘with an abused girl, a henpecked publican and a grieving, demented academic all [resorting] to the only thing that comforts despair — myth, mystery [and] storytelling’.

 

Now in the back of an Industrial Estate in Peckham, ‘Minstrel & Chronicle‘ the latest exhibition at Hannah Barry gallery has taken hold of the same theme. Here Nathan Cash DavidsonAntoine Catala, Sophie CundalePeles Empire and Samuel Fouracre are among the artists examining the role of the contemporary artist as storyteller; rethinking, deconstructing and changing it throughout their works. The show’s central concern is ultimately ‘the tension between the impulse to communicate and the inherently anarchic processes of art making‘.

Here, high culture is married with pop culture, language is subverted and distorted and this Peckham gallery becomes a microcosm of the wider world in which the minstrel narrator is employed in order to address society, politics and art. It is a fascinating exhibition that encompasses both tradition and innovation. The works on display may be varied with a range of media being employed but there is a sense of a shared idea and a common desire: to further the tale of the storyteller.

May 30th- July 28th 2012

all images: www.hannahbarry.com

ps: Poetry Evenings on 12th and 29th June – following the exploration of the artist as narrator within a hybrid and networked culture, these two events will question a similar impulse within the poetic turn, whereby language might in the same moment create as well as connect.<– Absolutely love the idea of mixing Art, poetry and Peckham!