around london 2018 [part 2]

anything is peaceful at 1,353 feet

London has some great vantage points to catch amazing views of the city. i’m keen on great views however, i’m not so keen on great heights.

i’m lucky then, that London is not a totally high-rise city full of skyscrapers like other densely populated capitals. this is partly due to longstanding grumbles about tall buildings in historic areas along with the protected views around St Pauls Cathedral. but when things get claustrophobic on the ground it’s good to know you can grab a high-speed elevator up to a top floor and get an uninterrupted view of the land. just as long as it’s not too high…

i’m not a bad flyer or terrible ladder climber. i just have a set criteria to extreme heights that will get an automatic nope from me. firstly, it cannot move so this rules out cable cars and giant firework-rigged wheels. secondly, tall buildings are fine but only if there’s a bar at the top of it. i need a g&t to calm the nerves. but when i get up there and the crowds and cars turn into ants i find the view is spectacularly static. it got me thinking if there were better views, closer to the ground that captured a living city.

i’ve found an alternative to heading to high ground for great views. i’ve been exploring secret views – completely accessible but totally ignored vantage points in London. you’ll find them in buildings, off some weird corridor in a gallery or a rarely used stairwell.

i’ve found loads of them on Oxford Street – they’re windows blocked up by clothes racks or in the discount section of a department store no one ever goes to. they’re hidden windows looking over some of the city’s most popular areas and they offer a unique perspective that few people have ever captured. the only catch is, you’ve got to find them yourself.

i’m not telling you kick down any locked doors or jump rooftops just for the sake of people watching. but some of these secret views hold some of the most under-appreciated views you can get of the city. look up. they’re hard to find but the payoff is so rewarding

i occasionally post some secret views to my instagram stories so you can catch where i’m heading to next. most were found in-between events in London. below are the highlights of all the things i’ve seen in the second half of 2018:

Carol Bove at David Zwirner

Sarah Sze Afterimage at Victoria Miro

Leelee Kimmel Wormhole at Simon Lee Gallery

Banksy Greatest Hits, 2002-2008 at Lazinc

Looking for U at Unit London

Urs Fischer soft at Sadie Coles

Memory Palace at White Cube

Somewhere In Between at Wellcome Collection

Sou Fujimoto Futures of the Future at Japan House

Van Gogh lived in Stockwell at San Mei Gallery

Christopher Le Brun New Painting at Lisson Gallery

Angela de la Cruz Bare at Lisson Gallery

Disappear Here at RIBA

Hope to Nope: Graphics and Politics 2008-2018 at Design Museum

Azzedine Alaïa The Couturier at Design Museum

250th Summer Exhibition at RA

Anthea Hamilton The Squash at Tate Britain

Lisa Brice at Tate Britain

Architecture Prototypes & Experiments at The Aram Gallery

Carlos Cruz-Diez Luminous Reality at Phillips

SPI Street Awards 2018 at Leica Café

London Design Biennale 2018 at Somerset House

Will Martyr Fathoms at Unit London

Loie Hollowell Dominant / Recessive at Pace Gallery

Martine Syms Grand Calme at Sadie Coles

Mika Rottenberg at Goldsmiths CCA

Jenny Holzer at Tate Modern

Martin Eder Parasites at Newport Street Gallery

Turner Prize 2018 at Tate Britain

Ed Ruscha Course of Empire at The National Gallery

Strange Days: Memories of the Future at The Store X

Elmgreen & Dragset This Is How We Bite Our Tongue at Whitechapel Gallery

Surreal Science at Whitechapel Gallery

Chris Burden Measured at Gagosian

Space Shifters at Hayward Gallery

Francis Upritchard Wetwang Slack at The Curve, Barbican

Renzo Piano at RA

Adam Pendleton Our Ideas at Pace Gallery

Rammellzee RAMMΣLLZΣΣ: A Roll of Dice at Lazinc

21st Century Women at Unit London

Doris Salcedo at White Cube

Jon Hopkins at 02 Academy Brixton

Emmanuelle Lainé Learn the Rules Like a Pro, So You Can Break Them Like an Artist!’ at Hayward Gallery

Hannah Perry GUSH at Somerset House

Frida Kahlo Making Her Self Up at V&A

The Future Starts Here at V&A

Videogames: Design/Play/Disrupt at V&A

Home Futures at Design Museum

Designs of the Year 2018 at Design Museum

Alex Katz Coca-Cola Girls at Timothy Taylor

Jacky Tsai Reincarnation at Unit London

John Baldessari Brain/Cloud (Two Views) at Marian Goodman

Dana Birnbaum at Marian Goodman

Pierre Huyghe UUmwelt at Serpentine Galleries

Atelier E.B Passer-by at Serpentine Galleries

[out of london] Cubism at Centre Pompidou, Paris

Anni Albers at Tate Modern

Michele Abeles world cup at Sadie Coles

Claude Lévêque Midnight Lightning at Kamel Mennour

Chiharu Shiota Me, Somewhere Else at Blain|Southern

12 Shelves at The Aram Gallery

Michael Pybus soft play at Lungley Gallery

Alexis Hunter Sexual Warfare at Goldsmiths CCA

Kris Lemsalu 4life at Goldsmiths CCA

Philip Colber Hunt Paintings at Saatchi Gallery

Korakrit Arunanondchai No history in a room filled with people with funny names 5 at Carlos/Ishikawa

Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2018 at South London Gallery

all photos shot on iPhone XS. edited in VSCO