Crumbling concrete, powdering plaster, rusty steelwork, peeling paint and boarded-up windows, yet only a few minutes from the swinging cranes and energy of redevelopment projects on the south bank of London. This is the Bargehouse at the Oxo Tower – the decaying industrial building which is currently showing the pop-up exhibition “Exhibit Here Art Maze”.
“Exhibit Here” is an online art gallery and curator of art exhibitions for artists to show and sell their work and to provide opportunities for networking. At Bargehouse, over 100 artists are showing a wide variety of work to create the “Art Maze” with many of the works having a relationship with the Bargehouse itself, such as the columns made of timber and tyres, reminiscent of wooden structures in the river, and the contrasting refinement of “Inside Illusion” by Larissa Bones, while Heather Burwell’s sculptures are magically silhouetted against the metal windows. Elizabeth Nash has included a watercolour of the skaters in the undercroft of the nearby South Bank Centre and Hsin-Chin Hung’s work “Winter” creates something new and quite delicate from many hundred broken shards while David Fines reworks different materials into something new but not complete; does this represent work which remains unfinished?
Street art is included by artists such as Adam Raid and georgie and Alison Stirling’s untitled work showing concrete decay resonates in this environment, while Samuel Capell makes a commentary on the decay to health and well-being in our modern society caused by addictions such as sugar and junk food with his works “The Seven Deadly Sauces” and “Please Sir, I’m Hooked”.
One day the Bargehouse may be redeveloped, but in the meantime it continues to provide a unique environment for such exhibitions as the “Exhibit Here Art Maze”, complementing the refurbished gallery spaces across the courtyard in the main Oxo Building.