As 2022 draws to a close, we look back at all the fantastic arts events and cultural happenings in Battersea and Nine Elms this year. We’ve enjoyed dance, installations, poetry, architectural events, new artwork from local artists and the summer Happy Streets festival.
Take a look below at our snapshot of the year just gone and follow us on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook to join the fun in 2023!
Starting the year with a refresh of our three outdoor Nine Elms noticeboards, we partnered with the Battersea Society to examine the fascinating aviation history of the Battersea and Nine Elms area.
Setting the stage to profile the work of local artists through 2022 and beyond, Wandsworth Council issued a call-out for local artists to Make Art In Nine Elms.
In a unique tie-up between Wandsworth Council and local music charity World Heart Beat, a series of Nine Elms Sessions films launched with Fly Away – a music video shot in Nine Elms and inspired by aviation pioneer Hilda Hewlett.
As spring approached so did a series of public consultation sessions to hear local people’s views on arts and culture in their area.
Votes are in: Movement & Metamorphosis public selections at the ROSE
After several years in the making, Matt’s Gallery opened their new gallery and performance space at 6 Charles Clowes Walk, Nine Elms, SW11 7AN.To mark their opening on Thursday 28 April, Matt’s launched their first exhibition in the new space – Cold Light by Lindsay Seers & Keith Sargent, a new film, Virtual Reality work and installation. Over the first four months the gallery clocked up engagement with over 1,500 people.
Open in Nine Elms: Matt’s Gallery welcomes visitors
As part of the national Urban Tree Festival, residents and visitors were encouraged to get familiar with Nine Elms’ elm trees – find them, learn to recognise them and love them!
Chosen by local residents for the Movement & Metamorphosis series of events, Battersea-based dance company E33 performed Used to Be… outside St Mary’s primary school alongside mindfulness and wellbeing workshops from Daria Hass.
As part of London Festival of Architecture 2022, Wandsworth Council joined forces with Lambeth Council for a panel talk and walking tour of the railway viaduct running through the area. Joined by architects Allies and Morrison, guests discussed the potential extension of London’s Low Line from Vauxhall through Nine Elms to Battersea.
Chosen by the local community to create a new artwork with the theme of Movement & Metamorphosis, local resident Felicity Prazak’s The Ninth Planet is a spectacular conception of the planets and the night sky. The Ninth Planet was co-created with the 17th Battersea Power Station Brownies and adult yoga group from the nearby R.O.S.E Community Centre, as well as the over 60’s lunch club at S.T.O.R.M who meet on the Doddington and Rollo Estate.
On display: Artist Felicity Prazak with The Ninth Planet
The annual Happy Streets family festival brought themes of happiness and wellbeing as 53 artists spread out across estates, schools and streets in Nine Elms to engage over 1,200 local residents in a day of live music and theatre, creative activities and pizza-making.
Also in July, families enjoyed a free Dance and Play Day at the Yvonne Carr Centre with relaxed performances, craft workshops and food. The Playground Tour by The Place featured two short performances in a 40-minute double bill called How to Build A Universe, by Extended Play and Deva by Urja Desai Thakore.
Happy Streets Festival: St George’s primary school hosted live performances
This month, there were two Movement & Metamorphosis art events chosen by the local community and commissioned by Wandsworth Council.
Taking inspiration from the fast-changing local environment, local poet Hilaire led a free workshop called found ~ flow ~ flux which combined walking and writing. The poems were then published in a booklet by Hilaire and launched at the ROSE community clubroom with readings from contributors.
Written word: participants read from their work at the found ~ flow ~ flux event
A busy month for arts and cultural events in Nine Elms!
Creating new links and getting community input have been central to the design of the forthcoming Arch 42 gateway under a railway arch in Nine Elms. Projects Office led discussions on creating this large-scale design during London Design Festival.
It wouldn’t be September without the London-wide Totally Thames Festival. Artist Camilla Brendon installed the Kelp Forest artwork at the Nine Elms Pavilion alongside a family workshop using materials destined for landfill and exploring the wonders of kelp, a brown algae that form forests in shallow waters.
Commissioned by Wandsworth Council as part of the Movement & Metamorphosis series, local artist Ian Wornast created a series of abstracted artworks of Battersea and Nine Elms landmarks called My Neighbourhood in Nine Elms. Ian’s posters have gone on public display across the area, showing the city’s changes and developments and particularly its public transport system.
Outdoor exhibition: Ian Wornast with his artworks at the ROSE
In the last Movement & Metamorphosis art project of the year, Fée Uhssi presented Life is Change – a multi-disciplinary art and community project including fashion, dance and rollerdance.
As part of Wandsworth Council’s response to the Cost of Living Crisis, Mondays At The ROSE opened weekly from October to provide an open-all-day warm community space for local residents living in the Savona, Patmore and Carey Gardens area. Visitors are welcome to drop in for a free coffee, hot meal, spend some quiet time making something arty or doing some work, or watch a film with a cup of tea.
Grade II* listed Battersea Power Station opened its doors to the public for the first time ever, with a free Festival of Power over two weekends.
In the second Dance and Play Day of the year, families headed down to the Yvonne Carr Centre to enjoy relaxed activities including dance performances, craft workshops, face painting and food. Children of all ages were entertained by performances from Joe Garbett Dance Company, including Get Lost and Doubles.
Opening moment: Mayor of Wandsworth and Sahana Gero from World Heart Beat
Matt’s Gallery opened their Matt’s Neighbours Scheme – welcoming local people living within a 15-minute walk to be part of a new network to help spread the word and give feedback on exhibitions and events.
It was fairy lights, festive food and fun all the way at this year’s ROSE Christmas Party! Over 150 children and grown-ups filled the ROSE community clubroom for wreath-making, live music and mince pies while the queue grew at Santa’s grotto for Christmas treats.
Then for the last show of the year, families packed the Carey Gardens community clubroom to see Jellyfish Theatre‘s free version of The Elves and the Shoemaker with puppets, music and giant props.
Festive cheer: Santa welcomes families at the ROSE Christmas Party
Reviewing arts and culture in Nine Elms
Wandsworth Council commissioned a review into the impact of cultural activities on the Battersea and Nine Elms area between 2017 and 2022, to help shape future arts decisions. Read the Cultural Impact Assessment report.