first serious dream about the art project - involved loosing usbs, grabbing people on the street to borrow, tiny mirophones arguments about how it wasnt painting, missing cut off points for taking equipment back- and a mirror to project in to (will try that in the room this week)
A gin palace is an English name originally for a lavish bar selling gin, later transferred by association to late Victorian pubs designed in a similar style.
In the 18th century, gin shops or 'dram shops' were just small shops (often originally chemist's shops as gin originally had medicinal associations) that sold gin mostly to take away, or to drink standing up. As the legislation changed establishments generally became larger; they also had to be licensed and sell ale or wine. In the late 1820s the first 'Gin Palaces' were built, Thompson and Fearon's in Holborn and Weller's in Old Street, London. They were based on the new fashionable shops being built at the time, fitted out at great expense and lit by gas lights. They were thought to be vulgar at the time, although hugely popular. Charles Dickens described them as "perfectly dazzling when contrasted with the darkness and dirt we have just left…" in his Sketches by Boz.
The design hugely influenced all aspects of the design of later Victorian pubs, even after gin had declined in importance as a drink; the bar in pubs is based on the shop counter of the gin palace, designed for swift service and ideal for attaching beer pumps; the ornate mirrors and etched glass of the late 19th century. The term has survived for any pub in the late 19th century style; as this was the peak of pub building in Britain the style has become associated with the pub, even though none of the original gin palaces survives.
Baker's Vaults in Stockport is a fine example of a Gin Palace. In the underground vaults there remain the brick stalls designed to hold gin barrels.
Well preserved examples of the late 19th century style include the Princess Louise in Holborn and the Philharmonic Dining Rooms in Liverpool.
Contents Pleasure boats In the 20th century, the term "gin palace" came to be used for large ostentatious pleasure craft, such as a motor yacht or luxury yacht, typically moored in a marina and fitted with a sun deck used for outdoor entertaining and leisure, normally involving alcoholic drinks  .
Warships Because of her luxurious fittings and a corruption of her name ("A Gin Court"), the 1913 battleship HMS Agincourt was referred to as the "Gin Palace" in the Royal Navy.
510 new listings include a Victorian gin palace inside the Cauliflower hotel and an RAF force protection wing headquarters
An elegant street lamp in Sheffield which was originally designed to burn off sewer gas, a hairdresser’s in Scarborough now a quaint tea-room, and the gravestone of the band leader who died on the Titanic, are among the most unusual listed buildings and other structures of the last year.
All have been listed by Historic England to protect rare survivors of what were often common types of building and structures – including a rice mill in Liverpool and a bacon smokehouse in London. The street light on Stewart Road would have looked like any other in 19th century Sheffield, but was actually correctly described as a “sewer gas destructor lamp” designed to burn off the dangerous methane and other gasses which accumulated in Victorian sewers. Now listed Grade II, it is a rare example of the lamps which were located where there was known to be a problem with pockets of gas.
The oldest site on the list is a Neolithic henge at Northorpe in Yorkshire, completely ploughed out at ground level, but still visible from the air as crop marks in a field. The most recent include a 1965 concrete house in London and a 1975 former bus shelter in Milton Keynes.
Facebook Twitter Pinterest Traces of a neolithic henge in Northorpe, East Riding of Yorkshire. Photograph: Dave MacLeod/Historic England/PA A more sinister period of 20th century history is preserved in the former RAF force protection wing headquarters at Greenham Common, built in the Cold War era complete with decontamination unit and bomb-proof bunker. As the US airforce base became famous for the womens’ peace camps which ringed the perimeter fence, the headquarters was the command site from which the command would have been given to launch the nuclear missiles. Many of the buildings were demolished after the base closed in 1993, so this has been given the second highest Grade II* listing.
Facebook Twitter Pinterest Former RAF force protection wing headquarters at Greenham Common in Berkshire. Photograph: Historic England/PA The genteel Francis hairdressing salon in Scarborough was designed in the 1930s with elegantly panelled separate booths to preserve the privacy of female customers. It is now a tearoom, but the original features are well preserved including the peach coloured imitation marble shopfront.
Gravestone of band leader Wallace Hartley, who died on Titanic’s maiden voyage in 1912. Photograph: Historic England/PA Two playground games make the list: one is a 1960s sculpture by John Bridgeman at Acocks Green in Birmingham, designed for children to scramble on and in, the other a tall post with hooks which once held chains and ropes, a “Giant’s Stride” donated in 1866 to the children of of Townfield School in county Durham by the vicar: his wife gave skipping ropes to the girls.
The most poignant listing is the gravestone of Wallace Hartley, a hard working professional violin player when in 1912, aged 31, he got his most prestigious engagement as band leader on the doomed Titanic. According to legend the band played Nearer My God To Thee as the ship sank, and the sheet music of the hymn, together with his violin, is carved into his gravestone in Colne, Lancashire. A huge crowd, estimated at 40,000, turned out for the funeral after his body was recovered from the sea, together with his diamond ring, silver cigar case and cheap nickel watch on a gold chain. His violin also survived, in a leather case strapped to his body, and was auctioned in 2013 for £900,000. A memorial to him in the town centre, on the route of the funeral procession, has also been listed.
Facebook Twitter Pinterest Victorian gin palace inside the Cauliflower hotel in Ilford, Essex. Photograph: Historic England/PA The listings include a spectacular Victorian gin palace, the Cauliflower hotel in Ilford, Essex, a live music venue where bands including the Small Faces and the late Ian Dury have appeared. It was listed Grade II to protect the battered but spectacular interior, a riot of stained glass, brass rails, and carved wood, when it closed in 2013. It has since reopened under new management after a petition by local residents.
Historic England retains the listing, heritage protection and grant making powers of the old English Heritage, which has now split into two organisations. The structures and sites are among 510 recent listings.
more research Search Results London's gin palaces, past and present - Telegraph telegraph
In the early 1800s, alluring new gin palaces emerged all over London. A renewed interest in gin is bringing this forgotten facet of London's drinking culture back to life. By John O'Ceallaigh March 21, 2013 14:36 London in the 1830s was the biggest city in the world and among the innovations that catered to its vast population was the gin palace. Shops at the time had been spruced up to entice the increasing number of locals who had a disposable income and these businesses, alluringly lit by newly arrived gas lighting and with large plate-glass windows to showcase their wares, provided inspiration for the first wave of gin palaces in the capital.
The arrival of London’s gin palaces was preceded by a growing understanding of how to make increasingly sophisticated, palatable spirits, and a desire to consume them in an agreeable setting. Up to that point, most establishments selling alcohol were gloomy, unattractive places; the introduction of gin palaces, illuminated by gaslight and with an unusually ornate exterior, was an exciting addition to the urban landscape. (That said, the palaces’ interiors didn’t mirror their external elegance – they typically contained a long bar at one end, which faced a simple open space without seating.)
Alex Werner of the Museum of London has studied the history of London’s gin palaces, places that were frequented by men of all classes, except for those from the very highest levels of society, as well as women “who sometimes were not completely respectable.” Why did gin palaces flourish in London? “Gin isn’t just a London drink – there’s a big gin tradition in Holland – but the particular style of dry gin associated with London is a gin that works very well when mixed with other things. At the time there was less illicit distilling and gin was beginning to be much improved. People were experimenting with adding different flavours and interest in the spirit’s adaptability grew.”
The dominance of gin didn’t preclude other alcoholic beverages from being consumed in London’s gin palaces – brandy and rum were available and beer and porter would be cheaper there than at a tavern, if the customer brought their own jug in with them. But dropping in for a quick ‘flash of lightning’, as a serving of gin was referred to, was a popular precursor to a night at the theatre or to prepare workers for their evening journey home. Many of London’s gin palaces were centrally located in Bloomsbury or Covent Garden; in outlying, less well-to-do areas of the city smaller gin shops served local communities.
Gin palaces eventually evolved into more sophisticated venues which might offer unusual cocktails or perhaps space for dancing. As consumers became more demanding still, the original gin palaces died out and no authentic gin palace from that era remains in London today. Modern-day drinkers, however, can still encounter their legacy in some of the capital’s pubs. If you find yourself in a 19th-century drinking den with large glass windows, mirrors, wallpapered interiors, gilding and ornate mouldings on its exterior, it’s likely the venue’s design was inspired by gin palaces.
A revival of interest in gin also means modern-day Londoners have ample opportunities to try the drink. With that being the case it’s worth doing some background research into the spirit to ensure maximum enjoyment. How can people discern that they’re drinking a quality gin? Tanqueray master distiller Tom Nichol advises: “The most expensive gins are not necessarily the best. You will be able to tell very quickly if you like it but, generally speaking, a nice aroma and a smoothness of taste are good starters. If it tastes thin and has a burn to it, avoid it.”
Quality shouldn’t be a problem if you stick to reputable venues, however. London’s exceptionally innovative cocktail scene is playing its part in the revival of interest in the spirit by serving a plethora of gin-based cocktails. The Langham Hotel increased appreciation for the spirit by opening a lavish, temporary gin palace within its Palm Court last year; new gin distilleries are opening in the city; and it’s possible to participate in master classes that examine all aspects of the drink. London’s quintessential spirit may have previously fallen from sight, but it’s now firmly back in favour.
Where to learn about and drink gin in London
Alex Werner is one of the hosts of Tanqueray’s Gin Palace, a pop-up venue open at 13 Floral Street in Covent Garden from March 27 to 28. Inspired by London’s original gin palaces and opened to mark the birthday of the brand’s founder Charles Tanqueray, the venue will serve unique seasonal cocktails created by skilled bartenders including Erik Lorincz.
Twice a month the Intercontinental hotel on Park Lane hosts its sophisticated, theatrical Gin & Jazz parties. Talented jazz musicians from throughout Europe perform on the night while guests sample from a range of 35 gins and a cocktail list inspired by the 1920s, a highpoint for gin-based cocktails.
The UK’s most extensive gin collection is found at Graphic bar in Golden Square, near Soho. Currently containing about 180 different gins, the collection is being added to constantly and should have numerous brands that even the most avid gin fan has yet to discover.
Dukes hotel in Mayfair is supposedly where Ian Fleming penned Bond’s ‘shaken, not stirred’ line, and the bar is referencing that association with its Martini Masterclass, overseen by head barman and martini expert Alessandro Palazzi. The two-hour afternoon sessions aim to teach participants everything they could possibly want to know about the martini, a mixture of gin and vermouth. It costs £95 per person.
The Ginstitute on Portobello Road, meanwhile, will immerse students in a class that covers all things gin. As well as learning about its composition and history, you’ll be able to ceate your own bespoke bottle of gin, yours to take home and the recipe of which will be kept on file so you can order it again and again. The session costs £100.
Sipsmith is behind the first gin distillery to open in London for 200 years and the good news for anyone curious about the creation of the drink is that the distillery is open for tours every Wednesday evening. Costing £12 per person, the tours begin with a welcome drink and continues with a tutored tasting of the company’s award-winning spirits.
The London Gin Club is a popular resource for anyone with an enduring passion for gin. Regular get-togethers are held in The Star at Night bar in Soho, during which guests can sample a range of over 60 premium gins. Gin-based cocktails are also a speciality, with drinks on offer including concoctions from the 1800s to modern-day gin creations.
It’s a Fuller’s pub now, but The Viaduct Tavern near St Paul’s Cathedral was originally built as a Victorian gin palace so should interest gin fans eager to imagine what an original gin palace was like. Gin isn’t a focus of the drinks menu here, but despite that the pub claims it serves the best gin and tonic in the city.
Mishkin's, "a kind-of Jewish deli" in Covent Garden makes gin a focus of its drinks menu - there are 20 varieties of gin in stock in the bar, and eight of its nine cocktails are gin-based.
"In side the Queen of Bradgate is this picture- situated left of the amasing "Gin Bar"!!!!- research continues ........
History of Gin Gin is a spirit which derives its predominant flavourfrom juniper berries (Juniperus communis). From its earliest beginnings in the Middle Ages, gin has evolved over the course of a millennium from an herbal medicine to an object of commerce in the spirits industry. Today, the gin category is one of the most popular and widely distributed range of spirits, and is represented by products of various origins, styles, and flavor profiles that all revolve around juniper as a common ingredient.
The name gin is derived from either the French genièvre or the Dutch jenever, which both mean “juniper”.
Some legal classifications of gin are defined only as originating from specific geographical areas (e.g. Plymouth gin, Ostfriesischer Korngenever, Slovenská borovička, Kraški Brinjevec, etc.), while other common descriptors refer to classic styles that are culturally recognized, but not legally defined (e.g., sloe gin, Wacholder and Old Tom gin).
By the 11th century, Italian monks were flavoring crudely distilled spirits with juniper berries. During the Black Death, this drink was used, although ineffectively, as a remedy. As the science of distillation advanced from the Middle Ages into the Renaissance period, juniper was one of many botanicals employed by virtue of its perfume, flavour, and purported medicinal properties.
The Dutch physician Franciscus Sylvius is credited with the invention of gin. By the mid 17th century, numerous small Dutch and Flemish distillers (some 400 in Amsterdam alone by 1663) had popularized the re-distillation of malt spirit or wine with juniper, anise, caraway, coriander, etc.,which were sold in pharmacies and used to treat such medical problems as kidney ailments, lumbago, stomach ailments, gallstones, and gout. It was found in Holland by English troops who were fighting against the Spanish in the Eighty Years’ War (more notebly during the Thirty Years War which was the latter part of the same campaign) who noticed its calming effects before battle, which is the origin of the term Dutch courage.
Gin emerged in England in varying forms as of the early 17th century, and at the time of the Restoration, enjoyed a brief resurgence. When William III (better known as William of Orange), ruler of the Dutch Republic, occupied the British throne with his wife Mary in what has become known as the Glorious Revolution, gin became vastly more popular,particularly in crude, inferior forms, where it was more likely to be flavoured with turpentineas an alternative to juniper.
He made a series of statutes actively encouraging the distillation of English spirits. Anyone could now distil by simply posting a notice in public and just waiting ten days.
Gin became popular in England after the Government allowed unlicensed gin production and at the same time imposed a heavy duty on all imported spirits. This created a market for poor-quality grain that was unfit for brewing beer, and thousands of gin-shops sprang up throughout England, a period known as the Gin Craze.
Because of the relative price of gin, when compared with other drinks available at the same time and in the same geographic location, gin became popular with the poor. Of the 15,000 drinking establishments in London, not including coffee shops and drinking chocolate shops, over half were gin shops.
Beer maintained a healthy reputation as it was often safer to drink the brewed ale than unclean plain water. Gin, though, was blamed for various social problems, and it may have been a factor in the higher death rates which stabilized London’s previously growing population, although there is no evidence for this and it is merely conjecture.The reputation of the two drinks was illustrated by William Hogarth in his engravings Beer Street and Gin Lane (1751).
This negative reputation survives today in the English language, in terms like “gin mills” or the American phrase “gin joints” to describe disreputable bars or “gin-soaked” to refer to drunks, and in the phrase “mother’s ruin”, a common British name for gin. Paradoxically the “negative” connotations are now becoming associated with “positive” connotations – with the resurgence of gin, upmarket bars now frequently refer to “mother’s ruin”, “gin palaces”, where printed copies of Hogarth paintings may sometimes be found.
The problem was tackled by introducing The Gin Act at midnight on 29 September 1736, which made gin prohibitively expensive. A licence to retail gin cost £50 and duty was raised fivefold to £1 per gallon with the smallest quantity you could buy retail being two gallons. The Prime Minister, Sir Robert Walpole, and Dr. Samuel Johnson were among those who opposed the Act since they considered it could not be enforced against the will of the common people. They were right. Riots broke out and the law was widely and openly broken.
About this time, 11 million gallons of gin were distilled in London, which was over 20 times the 1690 figure and has been estimated to be the equivalent of 14 gallons for each adult male. But within six years of the Gin Act being introduced, only two distillers took out licences, yet, over the same period of time, production rose by almost fifty per cent.
The prohibitive duty was gradually reduced and finally abolished in 1742. The Gin Act 1751 was more successful, however. It forced distillers to sell only to licensed retailers and brought gin shops under the jurisdiction of local magistrates.Gin in the 18th century was produced in pot stills, and was somewhat sweeter than the London gin known today.
In London in the early 18th century, much gin was distilled legally in residential houses (there were estimated to be 1,500 residential stills in 1726), and was often flavoured with turpentine – to generate resinous woody notes in addition to the juniper.As late as 1913, Webster’s Dictionary states without further comment, ” ‘common gin’ is usually flavoured with turpentine.”
Another common variation was to distil in the presence of sulphuric acid. Although the acid itself does not distil, it imparts the additional aroma of diethyl ether to the resulting gin. Sulphuric acid subtracts one water molecule from 2 ethanol molecules to create diethyl ether, which also forms an azeotrope with ethanol, and therefore distils with it. The result is a sweeter spirit, and one that may have possessed additional analgesic/intoxicating effects.
Dutch or Belgian gin, also known as jenever or genever, evolved from malt wine spirits, and is a distinctly different drink from later styles of gin. Jenever is distilled at least partially from barley malt (and/or other grain) using a pot still, and is sometimes aged in wood. This typically lends a slightly malty flavour and/or a resemblance to whisky. Schiedam, a city in the province of South Holland, is famous for its jenever-producing history. It is typically lower in alcohol content and distinctly different from gins distilled strictly from neutral spirits (e.g. London dry gin). The oude (old) style of jenever remained very popular throughout the 19th century, where it was referred to as “Holland” or “Geneva” gin in popular, American, pre-Prohibition bartender guides.
The 19th century gave rise to a style of gin referred to as Old Tom Gin, which is a sweeter style of gin, often containing sugar. Old Tom gin faded in popularity by the early 20th century.
The column still was invented in 1832, making the distillation of neutral spirits practical and enabling the creation of the “London dry” style, which was developed later in the 19th century. London Dry gin is usually distilled in the presence of accenting citrus elements, such as lemon and bitter orange peel, as well as a subtle combination of other spices, including any of anise, angelica root and seed, orris root, liquorice root, cinnamon, almond, cubeb, savory, lime peel, grapefruit peel, dragon eye, saffron, baobab, frankincense, coriander, grains of paradise, nutmeg and cassia bark.
In tropical British colonies gin was used to mask the bitter flavour of quinine, which was the only effective anti-malarial compound. Quinine was dissolved in carbonated water to form tonic water; the resulting mix became the origin of today’s popular gin and tonic combination, although modern tonic water contains only a trace of quinine as a flavouring.
By this time the battle for trade was hotting up between the beer shops and the gin shops. Following the 1820 ‘Beerhouse Act’, beer was sold free of licensing control and 45,000 beer shops – aimed to be the cosy homes from home – had appeared by 1838. Spirit retailers still required licences and, to compete with the beer shops, they devised the ‘gin palaces’ which first appeared about 1830. These were designed to be an escape from home. As home for the poor – who continued to be gin’s main supporters – was often a sordid slum, the gin palace was large, imposing and handsome and even luxuriously furnished. By the 1850s there were about 5,000 such places in London and Charles Dickens describes them in his ‘Sketches by Boz’ in the mid-1830s as “perfectly dazzling when contrasted with the darkness and dirt we have just left.”
In the mid-1830s the temperance movement started. Whilst it failed to make a big impact, it did encourage much debate on drink which was still a problem. Thomas Carlyle wrote of gin as “liquid madness sold at tenpence the quartem”. By 1869 this led to an Act licensing the sale of beer and wine (spirits were still licensed). Two years later a further Act was introduced which would have halved the number of public houses in the country, but public opinion was outraged. One bishop stating in the House of Lords that he would “prefer to see all England free better than England sober” and the act was withdrawn.
As reforms took effect, so the gin production process became more refined. So gin evolved to become a delicate balance of subtle flavours, and began its ascent into high society.
Gin triumphed in the 1920s – the first ‘Cocktail Age’ – after having been scarce during the 1914-18 World War.
Now recognised as a cosmopolitan and refreshing drink, gin became the darling of the famous Cunard cruises. During the 1920s and 1930s the newly popular idea of the ‘Cocktail-Party’ crossed the Atlantic from the USA to Britain via an American hostess who wanted to fill in for her friends the blank time between teatime and dinner.
London dry gin, with its subtle flavour made it easy to mix and it quickly became the staple ingredient in a host of fashionable drinks – including the world famous and enduring Martini. Over the next twenty or thirty years many other cocktails with improbable names came to reflect the dizzy and sophisticated society which created them.
During prohibition W.C. Fields was asked why, if he didn’t have a drinking problem, did he buy 300 cases of gin before it started. He replied “I didn’t think it would last that long.”
By 1951 the Bartenders’ Guild had registered 7000 cocktails on its files! At the same time gin had become one of the three essential drinks for home entertainment. Gin and tonic has remained one of the most popular and refreshing drinks right up to the modern day.
And the latest fashion for cocktails – with even a hit American film of the same name – has resulted in a new career for likely young men who want to be seen hobnobbing with the rich and famous. ‘Mixologists’ are the new breed of bartenders who invent and serve the newest cocktails – often including fresh fruit juices from all manner of exotic sources. Seen at a glitzy, modern, chrome and mirrored venue near you – gin has come a long way from the ‘palaces’ of the early nineteenth century.
Sloe gin is traditionally described as a liqueur made by infusing sloes (the fruit of the blackthorn) in gin, although modern versions are almost always compounded from neutral spirits and flavourings. Similar infusions are possible with other fruits, such as damsons, or beach plums.
A ‘National Gin Museum’ can be found in Hasselt, Belgium. There are others.
Beer Street Print - 1751 - William Hogarth Beer Street
http://kvickery1.workflow.arts.ac.uk/beer-street-to-gin-lane (found this here - interesting read)
'Beer street' is the partner print to Hogarth's more widely recognised 'Gin Lane'. Beer street depicts a thriving urban society, where tradesmen drink beer because they have the money to enjoy the alcohol, It seems to be a drink that brings joy and light-heartedness to these Londoners. We see all sorts of professions such as Butchers, Builders, a Priest, an Artist, Tailors, Road repair workers and fish sellers. The scene seems to be one of economic consistency where almost every character in this print has a job or a purpose, people seem to be flourishing and buzzing with energy. The Butcher holds a full joint of beef suggesting a healthy society with good food and supply; a trade that is doing well and serving the people quality.
There are a range of classes enjoying the beer, from the stout wealthy woman in the Sedan chair in the mid ground, to the working class tradesmen and the more dishevelled looking artist in the foreground. This suggests that beer is an alcohol that can give people hope and merriment in their daily lives. The poorest areas seem only to be the artist and the seemingly abandoned flat above the pawn brokers in the right hand corner.
Politically we can see all genders enjoying the alcohol, the fish sellers are women and they are enjoying the alcohol alongside men, however there is a suggestion of prostitution which could convey a problem in society. Despite this class gap we do see the range of classes above sharing the moment together which suggests there is a small class gap.
The print locates the area of St Giles, just north of Covent Garden, Bloomsbury. We can identify this by the steeple of the St Martins in the field parish in the background. The parish along with the priest suggest that there is a presence of religion and morals, if the priest is drinking beer but still has his books and his status upheld, this promotes beer to other members of society.
Gin Lane - 1751 - William Hogarth Print Gin Lane
Gin lane is the sister print of beer street. It is said that Gin lane conveys the complete opposite to beer street, looking at the bad effects Gin had on society in the 18th century. In this print we see a huge class gap where the Pawn broker appears to be doing well for trade, whereas everyone else is enfolded in chaos and poverty. The print is really one of desperation, where mothers disregard their children and children scavenge for food, where some are drinking to numb the badness of life and others take to suicide.
I find the most shocking imagery in this piece to be in the foreground and the mid section. In the foreground we see a mother holding a snuff box, her legs covered in syphilis sores and scars, her shirt freely open and her child falling from her arms. I find her state, especially her deranged looking facial expressions really disturbing and harrowing. In the mid section we can vaguely make out a naked woman being lifted into a wooden coffin, where a child cries next to her. Just right of this scene we see a child impaled on a tall spike; to me this shows the hopelessness for the next generation. The issue of impoverished children stands out almost more than the Gin craze itself in this print, we see a child sharing a bone with a dog, the complete opposite of the chubby butcher in beer lane waving about his joint of beef. We also see a mother feeding gin to her baby on the right hand side, its really ominous. Hogarth was very concerned with child welfare and was a governor in a children's charity founded in the 30's, who built up housing for impoverished children to live in the 40's. Hogarth seems to be genuinely concerned for the future of society in 'Gin lane'.
The political viewpoint comes into play where a figure of George I on a steeple in the background watches over the madness of the lane. The figure of George I being a previous monarch to the 18th century monarch George II suggests that those with most control in politics were uncaring towards the desperate lower classes, and observe the problems rather than intervening and taking action to solve the problems of the Gin craze.
Overall this print is looking at 'The downfall of lady gin' as the skeletal balladeer in the right hand corner holds on his ballad sheet. It looks at the desperation of the lower classes, who could afford the cheap gin to numb their hopelessness where they cannot even afford the luxury of satisfying food or decent building construction. I think the crumbling building sums up the mood of this print, Gin street ( also based on St Giles like beer street) is decaying for the poorer classes as those who can help sit by and watch.
The Secret Gin Club Letting people in on the secret of a whole new drinking experience https://secretginclub.wordpress.com/gin-history/history-of-gin/ (below found here- another interesting read)
"Loosely based around the Oor Wullie cartoon character, The film captures not only the young local characters of the day but also views of the streets including Niddrie, Craigmillar, Greendykes, Bingham and Portobello Beach. The animation sequence was reminiscent of some Monty Python stuff and I think its brilliant. Filled with Space Hoppers, flared troosers, long hair & stairs with no doors this is truly a film of the 70s. If you were a kid in Niddrie and Craigmillar in the 70s maybe you recognise some of the stars of this film or maybe even yourself. And no, I dont know what its about but I still love it.
Many thanks to Heather Henderson for letting me have a copy this film."
(My dad was involved the making of this film, employed as an arts and community youth worker. The film features my sister on a space hopper who also sang the little song at the end and our dog lurch in the first scene! )
Jonjo Elliott's Photography- here i am whilst next door to Jonjos studio (looks like i dance when i work) brilliant photographer/ artist - glad to have have him on board at Silver Vine Arts headquarters )
Points of reference & in discussion with Hugo Worthy - Exhibitions Officer for Contemporary Art at New Walk Museum and Art Gallery
Non linear collection - Luke Fowler
Wood, plastic and metal
Photo: Edouard Fraipont
Theaster Gates' practice includes sculpture, installation, performance and urban interventions that aim to bridge the gap between art and life. Gates works as an artist, curator, urbanist and facilitator and his projects attempt to instigate the creation of cultural communities by acting as catalysts for social engagement that leads to political and spatial change.
Gates has described his working method as “critique through collaboration” – often with architects, researchers and performers – to create works that stretch the idea of what we usually understand visual-based practices to be. For his exhibition at Milwaukee Art Museum exhibition in 2010, for example, Gates invited a 250 strong gospel choir into the galleries to sing songs adapted from the inscriptions on pots by the famous 19th century slave and potter 'Dave Drake'. For the 2010 Whitney Biennial, Gates transformed the Whitney’s Sculpture Court with a spare, architectural installation that functioned as a communal gathering space for performances, social engagement, and contemplation. For the duration of the exhibition Gates collaborated with various creative practitioners on a series of 'monastic residencies', holding live events such as the session by Gates' musical ensemble, the Black Monks of Mississippi. In another recent exhibition at Seattle Art Museum, Gates transformed the gallery into an audio archive entitled 'The Listening Room', incorporating a hand-built DJ booth and a DJ who spinned selections from the now foreclosed Dr Wax record store in Chicago, formerly an influential hub for 60s, 70s and 80s music, in particular jazz, blues and R&B.
Gates trained as both a sculptor and an urban planner and his works are rooted in a social responsibility as well as underpinned by a deep belief system. His installations and sculptures mostly incorporate found materials – often from the neighborhoods where he is engaged and have historical and iconic significance. In his series “In Event of a Race Riot” (2011 onward) for example, lengths of decommissioned fire hoses are carefully folded, rolled or stacked and emphatically presented inside gilt box frames. Tactile and sensuous objects in themselves, the hoses have special iconic significance in relation to the civil rights struggles, in particular with regard to the hosing of peaceful demonstrators in Birmingham, Albama in 1963. The frames act as a device for transformation but also a way to ask the viewer to think again about the still ongoing struggle for civil rights. Other sculptures derive from the stage set for performances, such as the series of shoe-shine sculptures. Made from recycled planks of wood, these over-sized, throne-like chairs emphasise the role of server and served and appear as both scaffold and monument.
Perhaps Gates most ambitious project, however, is the ongoing real estate development, simply known as 'The Dorchester Project'. In late 2006, Gates purchased an abandoned building on 69th and Dorchester Avenue on Chicago's South Side, collaborating with a team of architects and designers to gut and refurbish the buildings using various kinds of found materials. The building and, subsequently, several more in its vicinity, have become a hub for cultural activity housing a book and record library and becoming a venue for dinners (choreographed occasions entitled 'Plate Convergences'), concerts and performances. Gates describes this project as “real-estate art”, part of a “circular ecological system” since the renovations of the buildings are financed entirely by the sale of sculptures and artworks that were created from the materials salvaged from their interiors.
Theaster Gates was born in 1973 in Chicago, where he lives and works. He has exhibited widely, including group shows such as the Whitney Biennial, New York (2010), dOCUMENTA (13), Kassel (2012), ’The Spirit of Utopia’ at Whitechapel, London (2013) and Studio Museum’s ‘When Stars Collide’ in New York (2014). Solo exhibitions include ‘To Speculate Darkly: Theaster Gates and Dave, the Slave Potter’ at Milwaukee Art Museum (2010), Seattle Art Museum (2011), MCA Chicago (2013) and ‘The Black Monastic’ residency at Museu Serralves, Porto (2014). In 2013, Gates was awarded the inaugural Vera List Center Prize for Art and Politics, and he has since won the Artes Mundi 6 prize (2015). Gates is also the founder of the non-profit Rebuild Foundation and currently Professor in the Department of Visual Arts, University of Chicago.
Piccadilly Community Centre
13 May – 30 July 2011, Hauser & Wirth London, Piccadilly
Former Midland / HSBC Bank and Hauser & Wirth’s Piccadilly gallery is currently being transformed into a fully functioning Community Centre. The centre will host a wide range of classes, workshops and events. Facilities will include among other things multifunctional spaces, a computer room, a non-denominational prayer room, an activity room, a community canteen, a community bar and club. Outside in the market in front of St James’ Church, the Community Centre will run a stall. There will be a daily schedule of classes and events, which start on Friday 13 May and will run until Saturday 30 July.
Further information on Piccadilly Community Centre including an up-to-date schedule will be available closer to the opening at:
Leila Houston (London, 1977) is a visual artist whose work investigates the social, political and historical aspects of a place.