It’s Rubber, Duckie

Leave a comment

  • Florentijn Hofman Commission

    Tues 2 – 30 Sept / Free event

    River Thames at Riverside Gardens, Nine Elms Lane, London SW8 2DU

    Untitled1Rubber Duck (2013)

Something large, very large is coming to the Thames this September!

Renowned Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman will create an extraordinary new sculpture, his first UK commission, which will be situated in the River Thames at Nine Elms on the South Bank for the month of Totally Thames.

Inspired by the fascinating prehistory of the Thames, the installation will be semi-immersed in the river and will rise and fall with the tide. Hofman is known for scaled-up sculptures, such as Rubber Duck which travelled to several major cities in 2013, from Auckland and São Paulo to Hong Kong. Hofman’s sculptures often originate from everyday objects.

The design of Hofman’s Totally Thames commission is a closely guarded secret until Tuesday 2 September when it will be towed upriver from its build site to its end position at Nine Elms on the South Bank, an emerging new cultural destination with Vauxhall at its heart; the last piece of the South Bank jigsaw.

I am thrilled and excited to be using the Thames as the location of my first UK commission. The purpose of setting my sculptures in the public domain has always been to give members of the public a break from their daily routines, to inspire conversation and to cause astonishment. I hope the location of my sculpture on the Thames will inspire passers-by to engage with its surrounding area of Nine Elms on the South Bank, and to discover the various other events within the Totally Thames programme celebrating London’s river. Florentijn Hofman


About Florentijn Hofman

Dutch artist Florentijn Hofman (Delfzijl, 1977) likes his works large, very large. His monumental sculptures conjure up humour and sensation. His most well-known work Rubber Duck (2007), a 26-metre-high inflatable yellow rubber duck, signified his international breakthrough. The rubber duck has been travelling the world ever since. Everywhere it moors – from Auckland and São Paulo to Osaka – it is bound to cause a spectacle.

Everyday objects like a paper boat, a pictogram of an industrial zone or little plastic toy figures are at the root of Hofman’s images. These ready-mades are blown up to gigantic proportions, in a resemblance to the visual language of Pop Art. The Kobe Museum of Art, the Nantes Biennial, Z33 in Hasselt and SESC in São Paulo are among the institutions that have recently commissioned works by Hofman.

Florentijn Hofman was educated at the Art Academy Kampen and the Kunsthochschüle in Berlin. He lives and works in Rotterdam.

How to get there

Nearest tube: Vauxhall
Nearest pier: St Georges Pier

Stepped access to the foreshore is available for three hours a day at low tide.


Age group: All ages

This piece is commissioned by Thames Festival Trust with the Nine Elms Vauxhall Partnership, Wanda One (UK) and Vauxhall One; with support from Wandsworth Council, Lambeth Council, Bellway Homes, Ballymore Group, Battersea Power Station Development Company, Citygrove, CLS Holdings, St James Group, Berkeley Homes, Barratt London, Thames Tideway Tunnel and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands.


River Thames at Riverside Gardens, Nine Elms Lane, London SW8 2DU

















































It Was Twenty Years Ago Today (hence, the Bonnington Square Pleasure Gardens anniversary party)

Leave a comment

An Invitation note from the Bonnington Square Association:

Bonnington Square garden supporters

A very short work day proposed to do an end of summer tidy up the week before the party.

Please save both dates:

Garden work day: Saturday 23rd August 10am – 12am
Party for 20 years of Bonnington Square Pleasure Gardens: Saturday 30th August 6-9.30PM



Another Day, Another Gyratory Survey

Leave a comment

Another survey regarding the Gyratory. This one is from KOV but I suspect that Lambeth/Tfl will keep asking the same questions until they get the answer they want.

KOV Forum – Vauxhall Gyratory Transformation – Opinion Survey


There’s also a link to Tfl’s ‘Joint Vision’ update (I know, who writes this rubbish?)

Click to access 16e5aa_87be244b282f464d8d4d126220eb1259.pdf

Although, cynicism apart, there seems to be a glimmer of light that maybe our ‘joint vision’ is a little more disjointed than Tfl would have liked when they write:

Progress Update : Stage 2: March to Autumn 2014

• Initial modelling research indicates that removing the gyratory is feasible

• We are now developing a 3rd and 4th option – both include two-way working with viaduct widening and both contain bus interchange located centrally

• Improvements for pedestrians and cyclists being developed further

• Bus interchange options being developed and impacts on passengers assessed

Damien Hirst – Don’t Hold Your Breath (and no, it’s not formaldehyde)

Leave a comment

He’s late. Twelve months late to be exact. Not coming until 2015.

And this:



Will become this:



The architect’s blurb says:


This private gallery (in Newport Street) in Vauxhall involves the conversion of an extraordinary terrace of listed buildings that are former theatre carpentry and scenery production workshops. The gallery forms the whole length of the street, with three listed buildings flanked by new buildings at either end. The ground and upper floors within the five buildings are continuous and internally connected to allow suites of galleries to be used in many combinations from small to very large exhibitions. The floor level within the listed buildings has been radically altered to a new level that has a logical relationship to the existing windows, creating a series of lofty rooms. The unusual proportions of the street elevations, with their groups of low level windows and high blank walls above, have been continued in the new buildings which have facades of black engineering brick. The plans also include offices and a restaurant.

We say:

It looks a bit rubbish. Sorry Damien but it has to be said. A restoration of the existing listed Victorian buildings would have looked a lot more in keeping with the surrounding area. And a lot nicer. Unless of course you want to come to Vauxhall Cross. In which case, let the concrete pouring begin. What’s another modern pile amongst dozens?


B-B-Q (Lazing On A Sunny Afternoon – thanks Ray)

Leave a comment

Well, the sun shone, the charcoal didn’t refuse to get involved and burnt bright and white, the food was plentiful and the alcohol flowed (allegedly). A good time was had by all, including those of us who fell asleep on the grass afterwards (but we’re blaming that on Tim’s vodka, which seemed to disappear remarkably quickly). Big thank you to the residents who brought along the delicious desserts (I can testify that they were all superb, having sampled every one personally, and some of them twice – well, it would have been rude not to) and an especially big thank-you to Pamela, whose day-before shopping judged the food down to the last two burgers exactly. Probably why she was charged with portion control.

See you all next year. Same place, same time.

And here’s a song.              



IMG_4061IMG_4058IMG_4062 IMG_4064 IMG_4067 IMG_4068

%d bloggers like this: