Hackney top 10: art galleries
Hackney’s wealth of warehouse studios has made the borough a magnet for artists. The range of spaces – from major public galleries to independent and commercial enterprises – reflects the many and varied sides of the borough. Here’s our pick of the 10 best art galleries in Hackney.
Shoreditch visual arts centre that features the work of London’s black community, as well as exhibitions by international artists in the capital. The design inspiration of the building itself, by David Adjaye, was a latticed Sowei mask from Sierra Leone.
Forget platform 9¾ – this is Hackney, where platform 1 of Hackney Downs Station is home to reading room and project space Banner Repeater. There’s a bookshop selling artists’ publications and an esoteric programme of talks.
The CNB gallery is downstairs from the Tramshed restaurant, which displays Damien Hirst’s Cock and Bull (2012) – the two animals floating in formaldehyde murk. They host monthly exhibitions, workshops, poetry nights and charity auctions.
The east London sister of the Cork Street Flowers gallery shows work in all media by established and ascending artists.
It’s always worth popping into the downstairs gallery at Bootstrap: exhibitions have explored the life of bees (with proceeds to Bootstrap’s own beehives), the traditional justice system in postwar Sierra Leone, and abandoned Bronx streetscapes.
An artist-run gallery in Victoria Park village, which styles itself a ‘commercial and conceptual contemporary fine-art venue’.
Gallery space at the HQ of visual arts organisation Space, which for years has been providing affordable studios for local artists. Exhibitions reflect the charity’s commitment to promoting innovation.
An appealing exhibition space, not least because of its proximity to the canalside Counter Café and Roastery. It’s a brilliant showcase for Hackney Wick’s artist community.
This small corner café employs local artists to imaginatively revamp the decor every six weeks, as well as the wall outside. The coffee and pastries are pretty good too.
Located in the artsy enclave of Vyner Street near Victoria Park, Lime Wharf promotes urban regeneration through the arts. Centred around a light-filled café, it features a gallery and performance area as well as a maker space: you can use their laser and vinyl cutting and 3D printing machines for free. There’s an emphasis on experimental art, tech and film, and their music programming – classical and jazz – also breaks boundaries.