The thing I love about London is that there’s always something a little bit quirky popping up, so I couldn’t resist a last minute trip to London when the organisers behind the ABQ London Breaking Bad Cocktail Bar invited me down to their latest event: Moleculart 2015 last week.
With the Breaking Bad Pop Up there was a really clear theme that I could relate to, but this one sounded much more abstract. Let’s be clear here – I’m no expert on the subject of art. I either like something or I don’t and it has nothing to do with deep appreciation of the artist’s ‘message’. I’m more of a “oh that looks cool” or “well that’s a bit too weird for me” kind of girl. This installation, however, sounded interactive and based on having fun. Plus it promised more of those lovely ABQ London cocktails I enjoyed last month.
Fran and I arrived at The Bargehouse, Oxo Tower. I’d never been before and for some reason had expected it to be very glossy and also a skyscraper. I have no idea why. Instead it was a gritty and industrial space with exposed brickwork and dark corners; which in hindsight far better suited the event.
On the ground floor was an exhibition called Collagism #Alienese24Hour.
The artist introduced himself and explained that they had asked people around the country to decorate masks which they then digitalised. The results were projected onto a wall in a crazy moving image that flipped one half of the mask continually to create some very random results. We couldn’t stop staring at it!
My favourite thing though was this image of Darth Vader. It makes me smile every time I look at it (I hope that’s what the artist intended!).
We moved upstairs to seek out Molecular 2015 but along the way go distracted by all the different art exhibitions. Some of it was a bit too abstract for me, but I found some pieces I could quite happilly stare at for a while, as well as this dress made entirely out of milk cartons which was just so creative!
Finally, we made it to the fourth floor and could tell we were in the right place because the music was thumping. It was dark and atmospheric, with molecular images projected onto the walls. The ABQ London Bar stood in the middle of the room, who cooked us some very potent but delicious rum cocktails in that theatrical way I’ve come to love.
At the far end you could have a go at making your own art.
Let’s be honest, armed with paints and crayons and encouraged to go nuts in a dark room on rum cocktails, we’re not all going to suddenly turn into Picasso. So we chucked paint at the wall with wild abandon, signed our blog names and then tried to take artistic pictures in the smokey light.
I was reassured by the fact that those around us appeared to have been no more artistic than us!
Note to self, when posing for a selfie against a paint backdrop, don’t lean against it in a black coat next time Laura. (Naming no names, someone may have got paint all over themselves).
Afterwards we went for a walk along the South Bank. There are beautiful views of the skyline as you look out across the water. Just around the corner from the Oxo Tower is Gabriel’s Wharf, a lesser known but beautiful area with some Christmas decorations and plenty of bars. We ended the night with a bottle of Prosecco before a mad dash back to Kings Cross so that I could catch the last train home.
Thanks go to Lollipop for inviting me to experience something that I’d never have otherwise thought to try for myself and to Fran for coming along for the ride!
…and if you missed out on the Breaking Bad Pop Up, you can catch my post here and Kat’s post and Vlog. In good news they will be setting up in a permanent location next year, so sign up at ABQ London to be the first to know when and where!