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Friday, 24 September 2010

Return to Trinity Buoy Wharf

Contrary to how the title may sound (rather like a horror/thriller methinks), our return to Trinity Buoy Wharf (location for Hotel Medea, as you might recall) included a good deal of pottering around, checking out art studios, climbing up lighthouses and exploring buildings made of shipping containers. Oh and scoffing burgers. Rather a good way to spend an active yet relaxing Saturday.

Exploring London has always been one of my favourite things and getting to go inside usually restricted buildings holds a particular thrill. It's a way of satisfying my urbex impulse while keeping my sensible side happy.

We began with a tour of the 'experimental lighthouse' where a Mr Faraday used to spend much of his time experimenting with electricity and light. It is now also home to the intriguing Longplayer: "A computer generated musical creation from Jem Finer designed to play for 1000 years." At the time of writing, it has been playing for 10 years, 266 days, 5 hours, 23 minutes and 32 seconds. It sounded rather like whale song, with melancholy drawn out notes echoing around the lighthouse turret it a rather haunting fashion.

Stairs to lighthouse:

View of Canary Wharf from lighthouse:

Random desk by the lighthouse stairs. Is it me, or those this look like a scene from some sort of surreal Terry Gilliam movie? "Why yes, we have been expecting you.."

We then had a poke around a couple of studios, finding some very varied pieces of work. Including this one made with fruit flies:

Rather cool and gross at the same time. Some fishy art going on:

Apparently they are made to be lit from the inside - much like those cocoon-like IKEA lamps (the artist would probably slap me if he heard that).

Next we had a look at Container City and Container City 2 which are all made from, you guessed it, old shipping containers! Most are live/work studios, and although tiny they are perfectly livable and normal looking from the inside.

I rather wanted to check out the Zahira's Boudoir studio for a free leather working workshop, but unfortunately it was closed. They make some rather cool leather corsetry and even run classes.. Tempting!

Did you know that Trinity Buoy Wharf even has a primary school? Well, now you do. We had a look around Faraday School, which had a rather funky rooftop play area. Here was the view:

Loved the cloud-shaped cut-outs!

And as the school is also built using containers (as well as brick), there is the possibility to expand upwards if they need to!

We rounded off the day with a malt shake and burger from Fatboy's Diner. The diner was great, as was the milkshake, but the burger was a little disappointing as it was of the frozen beefburger + white bap variety. Still, only a small disappointment during what was otherwise a lovely day.

We might just be back. Again.

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