Summer is a time when London seems to be even more exciting than usual. The Southbank is buzzing, Shoreditch is full of pop ups, and museums open their most anticipated exhibitions. There are endless things to do in the city, from hanging out at rooftop cinemas to making street food discoveries, but to me there are three experiences that really stand out this summer. Three very different experiences that you’d be a fool to miss!
I went to see Carsten Höller’s exhibition, Decisions, a few weeks ago with friends. By the time I had gone down the slide to exit the gallery, I knew I couldn’t have spent a better afternoon. Every part of the exhibition is designed to encourage participation, which makes it so much more fun than any other exhibition! It plays with your senses, makes you think, and keeps you making decisions about what you’re going to do next. Everything is “designed to profoundly re-orientate our awareness of time and space”. I doubt you’ll see a flying machine, slide, upside down goggles or roaming beds at any other gallery.
Highlight: although the flying machines are fun, the upside down goggles were the biggest highlight for me! They are so disorienting and watching people walk around in them is the funniest thing.
Where, when and how much? Hayward Gallery (Southbank), £15 entry. Book your tickets online from Southbank Centre.
Bompas & Parr’s Alcoholic Architecture is coming to Borough Market – get ready for a “walk-in cloud of breathable cocktail”! Set in the basement of a Victorian building, this bar will have you walking through an alcoholic fog (you can’t see past one metre) that you’ll absorb through your lungs and your eyeballs, all while sipping on luxurious drinks made exclusively by monks. You can stay for an hour, by which time you’ll have absorbed the equivalent of one drink. Bompas & Parr have gone for a “Medieval history mixed with Miami neon” theme for the decor. Sounds pretty cool to me!
Highlight: drinking from a human skull, if that’s what you’re into!
Where, when and how much? Borough Market, from the 31st of July, £10-£12.5 entry and around £7.50 drinks. Book your tickets online from Alcoholic Architecture.
Admire Savage Beauty
My mother went to see it three times when it was showing in New York a few years back, so when I heard that Alexander McQueen’s Savage Beauty was coming to the V&A I knew I had to book a ticket straight away. I finally went to see it two weeks ago, and I wasn’t disappointed. Prepare to see some fashion that is pretty disturbing, yet very beautiful. From Scotland to Atlantis, dive into McQueen’s inspiration for each of his collections, and get to know what made him such a unique designer. It’s a treat to be able to get so close to dresses that have taken hundreds of hours to make – you can see the details much better than if you went to a fashion show!
Highlight: an amazing hologram of Kate Moss floating in the air.
Where, when and how much? Victoria and Albert Museum, until 2nd August (be quick!), £16 adult tickets. Book your tickets online from LoveTheatre.
Have you been to any of these?
What other experiences would you recommend?
Image credits: Savage Beauty – Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Decisions – Lynda Nylind, David Levene, Ela Bialkowska (OKNO studio). Alcoholic Architecture – Garage CCC, Beth Evans.