After spending Saturday in East London, why leave when you are having fun? My friend and I continued to explore London further last Sunday. We were done with museums and the weather was nice enough that being outside on our bikes was a priority. Being at a loss of where to bike, I used Time Out London for inspiration. I like that thanks to it we went places I would otherwise not ever have gone to.
1. Shakespeare’s Globe
It’s Shakespeare’s birthday! In celebration, Shakespeare’s Globe put on some special birthday events. Getting to the theatre I almost regretted our decision to go because the line-up looked long and filled with strollers. The line moved faster than expected, and once we got inside I wished it had taken longer: they packed the museum part of the building to the point that it was more of a shuffle than we experienced at Borough Market yesterday. After being almost run over by a few strollers, we made it out to the actual theatre, at which point the event improved remarkably. We sat down for a brief sample of Hamlet, and learned about the Globe to Globe Hamlet tour. I’ve seen the building from the outside before while strolling along the south bank, but I have to say it is a must see on the inside.
I am looking forward to seeing a show here sometime in the summer. The weather has to be somewhat nice if you are going to sit through an entire performance.
2. 5th Base Art Gallery
With the help of Time Out London I also found out about a small gallery just off of Brick Lane called “5th Base“, and their “Rad Science” exhibit. According to them, we would be in for a rather interesting art show:
Oozing green slime, bubbling beakers, flux capacitors, malfunctioning robots, terrifying but strangely erotic-looking instruments – everything you could possibly find on our persons on a Friday night. Rad Science will be a beautiful laboratory of the Heroes and their friends, a celebration of all things that help and harm, create and explode, hum and whir, of what grows in jars and is sewn on mice.
When we tried finding the gallery Google maps took us to a side road a bit east of Brick Lane, and it did not look at all like we might be finding a commercial space anywhere on that road. It looked really rather residential. Thanks to 5th Base having a fair size sign up with an arrow we managed to find it tucked away in what I’d call a small alley. But who knows, it could just as well be considered a tiny square.
There was a variety of art, all themed around science. If ever so vaguely in some cases. When I first saw the announcement for the exhibit I wanted to see it right away, how could I not as a former scientist? In fact, had I still been in graduate school I would most likely have bought one of the prints. That sounds a bit bad; I would still like to have one of the prints but my apartment is complete right now when it comes to art. There just isn’t any more room and I have enough in storage. Having said that, I enjoyed all the artistic test tubes, cells, and other images.
While I liked most of the art available, some of it wasn’t my cup of tea. Perhaps if I would have had a bit more context to the meaning of it all I could have built up more appreciation for some of the sculptures, but I just wasn’t feeling it. With a select few pieces I am also not sure about having it out in your house when your colleagues or grandparents visit, unless you are a medical doctor with a very narrow specialty. Let’s say they were on the slightly more graphic side. While I appreciate the details and the effort put into all pieces, some were just not my taste.
This gallery really got me interested in visiting more art shows in London. After all, I live in one of the most artistic parts of Town, so it would be foolish not to. East London is, as I am discovering more and more, a real hub of creative talent and expression. From street art to gallery, there is a wealth of opportunity to take in different art forms, without ever visiting a museum.
3. Strolling along Brick Lane and Music at Boxpark
From 5th Base we made our way along Brick Lane to Shoreditch high street. I love Boxpark, and every so often they have live music on under the motto of #BuskTheBox. I have never been to one before, but found out there would be a BuskTheBox session on Sunday. It’s free, so low risk and if you do not enjoy the music there is all of Shoreditch to explore. It’s fun that Boxpark puts out lawn chairs to relax on, although most could use a bit of a clean by now. We stayed to see two performers, one of which was Nakisha Esnard. She is a Soul/Reggae singer and plays a Ukulele, which I think is always fun for variety. One thing in particular stood out, she had one of the most creative ways of getting the word out about her Twitter handle. Looking for creative ways to get social media followers? Take Nakisha’s lead and have a listen below as to how she did it on Sunday!
4. Fish ‘n Chips
It was my friend’s last day in London, so we literally rounded it off with fish and chips. I like The Fish House. Mostly because they serve fantastic fish and chips, but they have other options as well. The daily specials vary and always have a ring of “fancy restaurant” to them. The food is well prepared, hot, tasty, and reasonably priced. On top of that, the atmosphere is good. All in all, I think it is a catch! Of course it is also in East London, so sticking to our plan of staying in the neighbourhood it all fit perfectly.
After we felt quite round, we finished it all off with a final cider at home before having to say good-bye. It was a great weekend and it was fun to explore more of London, some art, and show off my favourite neighbourhood.