Soft Opening: Water Damage
The international mindset of London, and especially East London, is one of the Paradise Row team’s favourite facets of the area we live in. Where else in the world would such an unlikely gallery space host installations from Krakow and L.A. in the space of two months? 4 Herald Street is one such space, offering the best in emerging artistic talent in a hidden pocket of creativity on a backstreet of Bethnal Green. #ParadiseRowCurates have already had the pleasure of experiencing Agata Ingarden’s HEARTACHE pieces earlier this year, so when we heard that the space was hosting a new series by L.A. artists Arielle Chiara and Alix Vernet, we paid the contemporary venue an overdue revisit.
Just like our previous experience, our visit was intimate and special, allowing the pieces to speak great volumes in a private setting (as it was only us inside the building). The Water Damage installation seeks to explore the convergence between the inside and outside spaces. Crumbling castles, stained houses and crystals illuminate the space in millennial pink, but their meaning tells a darker story of decay and transformation.
“Never has a tiny room felt so crowded and alive with only three installations.”
It’s an obvious exploration of physical decay through architecture, but with an underlying suggestion of the psychosomatic relationship between the body and mind; how nothing is truly interior and exterior to the self, one affects the other. It’s a constantly evolving installation, as pink textiles become gradually faded by constant exposure to sunlight, the same light that reflects off the minerals mined by Chiara and catches your eye as you explore the space.
With a monthly rotation of artists you’ll be astounded you had never discovered before, the Soft Opening gallery on Herald Street is a must-visit for the discerning East London art-critic. Not only will you experience the up-and-coming young visionaries that are on the verge of blowing up, but it costs absolutely nothing to enter; an ideal East London visit for students, creatives and anyone with a hunger for all art the area has to offer.
Words + Photos: Hannah Crosbie