Thursday, September 24, 2020

'The World Turned Upside Down' by Mark Wallinger

London The Unfinished City
An Upside Down World, in London.

Thursday September 10, 2020.

As I have said before, aimlessly wandering the streets of London can lead to some intriguing finds. So, you can imagine my surprise when I turned a corner and found myself face-to-face with the world, but turned on it's poles.

It stands on a small pedestrian plaza at Portugal Street, just down from 'The Old Curiosity Shop', near the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) building.

There is a plaque, that reads:

LSE is a place where people with different perspectives engage in

respectful debate about major issues of the world.

The World Turned Upside Down is a work of art by Mark Wallinger.

It is his representation of the world in 2019.

The designated borders, colours, and place names do not imply

endorsement by LSE concerning the legal status of any territory

or borders. There are many disputed borders and the artist has

indicated some of these with an asterisk.

Tuesday, September 22, 2020

Victorian Vespasienne


London The Unfinished City
A Victorian Vespasienne (Pissoir)

Thursday September 10, 2020

One of the advantages of wandering, sometimes aimlessly, around the great city of London, is that you get to make some unique discoveries.

This is what happened as I made a meandering way from Euston station to Southwark. Taking a left here and a right there, I soon found myself near Lincoln's Inn Fields. As I continued, in a southeasterly direction, I found myself in a narrow alley, named Star Yard, at which point I noticed this cast-iron toilet block.

Friday, September 11, 2020

Crossbones Graveyard & Garden of Remembrance

London The Unfinished City
Idols in the Crossbones Garden.
 Thursday September 10, 2020.

And well we know
How the carrion crow
Doth feast in our Cross Bones graveyard.
        - John Constable

I have long been fascinated with the history of the Crossbones Graveyard, but access to it was always a hit-and-miss affair, due to the site being run by volunteers. So, whilst halfway through a 10 mile walk, I was surprised to find that the gates were open and I was welcomed inside. 

I walked along a covered, curving wooden walkway, which was covered in hops, and entered the Garden of Remembrance. All about were plants, shrubs, trees in raised beds of dry-stone walls. The soft lapping of water from an ornamental stream and a pond, barely discernible among the tall grass, was home to a myriad of insects and pond life.

All about were small shrines, adorned with talismans and gifts left by the many visitors. Incense, wafting on the cool breeze, made the entire garden seem even more peaceful. It was hard to believe I was stood not far from London Bridge station and Borough High Street, such was the tranquillity of the place.