Real Estates was a six week project opening PEER up as a social, discursive and imaginative space around issues of housing and spatial justice in East London through a constantly changing series of exhibitions, screenings, discussions, readings and workshops. It marks the end of a seven-year series of collaborative works with our neighbours of the Haggerston Estate. Our work came from within the community, with whom we cultivated other spaces to gather, share and campaign before the estate was demolished in 2014.
The exhibition was an opportunity to extend this collaboration to other communities, campaigners and artists who have made it their life’s work to make visible the impacts of eviction, displacement and homelessness on everyday lives. These rooms hosted works and events that connect us, that illuminate, that bring pain to the surface, that inspire tenderness, that voice solidarity. Together we hope to develop a deeper understanding and find strategies to resist terrifying social injustices and restore ethical imperatives.
Exhibiting work from: Fugitive Images (Andrea Luka Zimmerman and David Roberts), Tom Hunter, James Mackinnon, Bekki Perriman, Moyra Peralta, Cardboard Citizens, DIG Collective (William Bock, Alberto Duman, Sophie Mason and Mark Morgan), Focus E15 Campaign, Smart Urhoife, UEL Unit 10.
Contributions from: Owen Jones, Hackney Digs, Pau Faus, Pau Faus, Silvia Gonzáles-Laá, Xavi Andreu, Aysen Denis, John Smith, Jane Rendell, Beverley Robinson, Aysen Dennis, Richard Baxter, Caterina Sartori, Brandon LaBelle, John Rogers, Jeremy Till, Barry Watts, Ken Loach, Kerry Simmons, Dave Sinclair, Lesley Woodburn, Sarah Kwei, Dave Smith, Paul Heron, Felicity Downing, Adrian Jackson, Marcia Farquhar, David Madden, Lisa McKenzie, Tom Gann, Alberto Duman, Louise Sayarer, Eva Vikstrom, Tom Cordell, Kate Macintosh, Paul Watt, Melissa Butcher, Jon Fitzmaurice, Fuel Poverty Action, Tawanda Nyabango, Jasmin Parsons, Geraldine Dening, Alison Balance, Patrick Langley, Morgan Quaintance, Rab Harling, Sue Lukes, Advisory Service for Squatters, Green and Black Cross, Legal Defence and Monitoring Group, Sweets Way Estate, HASL, Unite Communities, Our West Hendon, Guinness, Skills Network, Radial Housing Network, Dorothy Allan-Pickard, Rastko Novakovic, Steven Ball, Kate Belgrave, Jason Parkinson, Julian Samboma, LCAP, Sibyl Trigg, John Murray, Elisabeth Blanchet, Jane Hearn, Andre Anderson, Raze, Predz UK, Jeremy Till, Kayden Bell, Jade Snyper, Nathaniel Telemaque, Municipal Dreams, Guillaume Meigneux, Stephen Watts, Lorna Forrester, Elam Forrester, Alison Marchant, Gillian McIver, Emer Mary Morris, Cathy Ward, Nela Milic.
Thank you to: PEER, LUX, Restless Futures
REAL ESTATES: A PROJECT BY FUGITIVE IMAGES presented in association with LUX
Exhibition Dates: 18 February to 28 March 2015
Open: Wednesday to Saturday noon to 6pm (and until 9pm during evening events)
LAUNCH EVENT: Wednesday 18 February from 6 to 8pm with introduction by Owen Jones at 7pm
97 & 99 HOXTON STREET LONDON N1 6QL
T 020 7739 8080
Wednesday 18 February
6 to 8pm Launch: with introduction at 7pm by Owen Jones author, campaigner and Guardian columnist.
Thursday 19 February
2 to 5pm Class Room: Nightingale Design Surgery
The Nightingale Estate in Hackney Downs is being redeveloped. Students of the University of East London have been following events, and will hold a design surgery with residents of the estate. Hosted by UEL MArch Unit 10.
6.30 to 8pm Focus: Think You’ve Got It Bad, Hackney? There’s Still Hope!
Screening and discussion of Sí Se Puede!: 7 Days at the Barcelona PAH with director and scriptwriters Pau Faus and Xavi Andreu. Hosted by Hackney Digs.
Friday 20 February
6.30 to 8pm Film Screening: John Smith presents and discusses his films Hackney Marshes and Blight.
Saturday 21 February
2 to 5pm Homeworks: Hackney Digs Action Planning workshop
Join Hackney Digs and be part of ‘planning and taking action against the perpetrators of oppression and injustice in the private rented sector’. Hosted by Hackney Digs and part of Radical Housing Network’s week of action
WEEK TWO – TOM HUNTER
Wednesday 25 February
Tom Hunter - photographs of the Holly Street Estate (demolished in 2001) by artist Tom Hunter and a large-scale sculptural model by Hunter, artist James Mackinnon and photographer Mike Seaborne based on Lomas Court and Cedar Court, originally built in the 1970s. The second gallery space will present Tom Hunter’s film A Palace for Us (2010)
Thursday 26 February
2-3pm Class Room: Brandon LaBelle – Participatory Build
WEEK THREE - HOMELESSNESS AND OPEN CAMPAIGNS
This week PEER presents photographs by Moyra Peralta, who between the 1970s and 1990s made an extensive and personal series of portraits and images of people living on the street. The series is shown alongside Bekki Perriman's Doorways Project comprising photographs and sound work that invite the visitor to pay attention to the intimate, sometimes humorous, often disturbing and mostly ignored stories of homeless people.
Wednesday 4 March
6.30pm: Barry Watt,housing campaigner and activist, introduces this week’s programme
7 to 8pm: Reception
Thursday 5 March
3 to 6pm Class Room: Local activist, Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition supporter Lesley Woodburn leads this session to include a screening of Spirit of 45 by Ken Loach and a projection of photographs by Kerry Simmons and Dave Sinclair showing the changing urban landscapes in London and Liverpool.
6.30 to 8.30pm Focus: Homes – Jobs – A Future! Lesley Woodburn, Sarah Kwei, Dave Smith, Paul Heron and Felicity Downing
This session considers what is achieved through a mass home building programme that caters for need, not profit. It will look at the development and demise of council housing, and the need for political representatives who understand the importance of community, and the current crisis in political representation.
Friday 6 March
6.30 to 8pm: Adrian Jackson, Artistic Director and CEO of Cardboard Citizens introduces Moyra Peralta’s work followed by a screening of Cathy Come Home by Ken Loach
Saturday 7 March
3.30-4.30pm Homeworks: Onions in the Plughole – Marcia Farquhar
Marcia Farquhar will consider the connection between Saatchi’s new gallery and her mother’s loss of home: the story of a boarding house in Chelsea and its implications within a personal and political story of London and its housing.
WEEK FOUR - DIG COLLECTIVE
present an evolving durational performance:
Hoarding: a fiction of accelerated urban development in four acts.
DIG will ‘evict’ and board up PEER for the duration of the week, the gallery frontage becoming the backdrop for an accumulation of layered developers’ propaganda, occupation, rehabilitation and the effect of natural forces, all emerging over the period of four days.
DIG Collective is formed of William Bock, Alberto Duman, Sophie Mason and Mark Morgan, who came together to interrogate demolition and redevelopment, ritual and nature in Hackney Central.
Wednesday 11 March
6.30 to 8.30pm: Public Housing in the Neoliberal City: What is to be done?
An open discussion with contributions from Thomas Gann (South London Renters), David Madden (London School of Economics) and Lisa McKenzie (London School of Economics / Class War), scholars and activists working on housing in London and beyond.
In a city increasingly dedicated to privatisation, evictions and exclusionary ‘regeneration’ projects, what will happen to public housing? And how can public housing residents fight back against attempts to remove them? The point is both to understand the place of public housing in the neoliberal city and to help develop strategies for changing it.
Thursday 12 March
6.30 to 8.30pm: House Warming, Leaving Do
A drinks reception to mark the ‘occupation’ and ‘eviction’ stages of this durational performance. Guests are invited to participate in the event.
Friday 13 March
6.30 to 8.30pm: Screening of Utopia London (2010), by Tom Cordell
The acclaimed feature-length documentary that uses London’s architecture to explore its recent social and political history. Introduction by Tom Cordell followed by Q&A session with architect Kate Mackintosh
Saturday 14 March
3 to 5pm: Beyond planning: Fake Estates, SLOAP, empty homes; limits to the monetisation of contemporary urban space. With Paul Watt (Birkbeck), Melissa Butcher (The Open University) and Jon Fitzmaurice (Self Help Housing).
Gordon Matta-Clark’s Fake Estates was a project dealing with symbolic acquisition of slivers of urban land in the NYC of the 70s in which he higlighted the conceptual value of invisible ‘properties without use’ and ‘ownership with no real estate value’ in the urban space.
This event aims at looking again at the conceptual scope, mythology of otherness and real opportunities, to be found in between the symbolic archive of Matta-Clark’s Fake Estates, the various typologies of occupation and art-based initiatives in Detroit.
This is where a whole spatial politics of interstitial and empty spaces exists in between art practice, occupation, abandonment and recuperation, situated beyond planning and the ultimate monetization of urban space.
WEEK FIVE - FOCUS E15
This week is presented by Focus
E15 Campaign, continuing to build their movement that demands
SOCIAL HOUSING, NOT SOCIAL CLEANSING. The week will include a range
of material, artifacts and films from their campaign, eviction
resistance workshops, open mic, discussions and socials.
Wednesday 18 March
2 to 4pm: Energy Rights workshop by Fuel Poverty Action
“Struggling to pay your energy bills or top up your meter? Join Fuel Poverty Action for information, support and collective action!”
6 to 8.30pm: Opening social and open mic night
Launch Event: Come along for a drink and food, and share something on the open mic. See photographs of the Open House Occupation by Jess Hurd and David Mirzoeff and images of the campaign by photographer Gina Lundy.
Thursday 19 March
1.30 to 3pm: The Transformation of London Council Housing 1960s-2010s: From Gentrification Buffer to State-led Gentrification
With Senior Lecturer Paul Watt of Birkbeck, Tawanda Nyabango from CARP talking about Carpenters estate in Newham, and Jasmin Parsons from Our West Hendon talking about West Hendon estate in Barnet.
3.30 to 5pm: Geraldine Dening, lecturer on architecture at De Montfort University, discusses the role of architecture in the crisis. This discussion will cover the way estates were built in the first place, to the tactical ways architecture is used as a weapon today and how or whether architecture can help to improve the situation. With a contribution by Simon Elmer presenting on ‘Protest and Representation’. The session will also include a presentation of Dening’s project about and the dispersal and displacement of people, based on information from the Heygate Estate along with postcards created by Focus E15 to write and send.
7 to 8pm: An evening of performances, readings and films
Including a performance of Ursula by Alison Ballance; a reading by writer and critic Patrick Langley; and screenings of Letter from New Orleans by writer and critic Morgan Quaintance and Inversion Reflection by artist Rab Harling. Organised by Matthew McQuillan.
Friday 20 March
Eviction Resistance Skill-Share Day
12 to 1pm: Screening of Sí Se Puede!: 7 Days at the Barcelona PAH, by Comando Video-Collective (Pau Faus, Silvia Gonzales-Laa and Xavi Andreu)
1.30 to 3pm: Housing and Tenancy Law Workshop with Sue Lukes (incl, Migrant Housing Law)
3.30 to 4.30pm: How to Resist an Eviction: practical skills, protesting and legal advice. Contributions from Advisory Service for Squatters, Green and Black Cross (Legal), and Legal Defence and Monitoring Group, Focus E15 and more.
4.30 to 6pm: Meet Up & Sharing: Open Discussion, live case-work story sharing
Contributions from Sweetsway Estate, HASL, Robin from Unite Communities, Focus E15, Our West Hendon, Guinness, Skills Network, DIGS, Radical Housing Network, and many more.
6 to 8.30pm: An evening of film screenings
Including Carpenter State by Dorothy Allen-Pickard; Concrete Heart Land by Rastko Novakovic and Steven Ball; and Focus E15 Campaign Films by Kate Belgrave, Jason Parkinson, Julian Samboma and Fran Robertson.
Saturday 21 March
3 to 5pm: Long Table public talk
An open discussion on housing with key figures and campaigns, including Focus E15, Skills Network, Our West Hendon, LCAP, and many more. All are welcome to join the conversation!
Programmed by Emer Mary Morris and Focus E15 Campaign, with design help from Nina Scott and in association with Fugitive Images.
WEEK SIX - FUGITIVE IMAGES
Over the last five weeks Fugitive Images (Andrea
Luka Zimmerman and David Roberts) have invited communities,
campaigners, thinkers and engaged practitioners related to the
housing crisis to bring their important work into PEER and share
with us a glimpse of their own long-term projects on key sites. For
the final week of Real Estates, Fugitive Images are presenting
portraits from i am here, previously installed as a public art work
on Samuel House, Haggerston Estate; costumes from Estate, a
Reverie; a redacted copy of the House of Commons Hansard report by
residents of the estate; ‘Ghana Must Go’ bags by Smart Urhiofe; and
a looping programme of screenings relating to narratives of the
Haggerston Estate (see
website for details).
Gallery open 12 to 6pm Wednesday to Saturday
Wednesday 25 March
6.30pm: Launch event for Concrete Action. An evening of discussion on architecture, activism and alternatives to London’s regeneration
In recent times housing development has come to mean financial gain by property developers, bland blocks of expensive flats, privatisation of public land, and the break up of communities.
Concrete Action is a new platform set up by architects, architecture professionals and researchers aiming to empower those affected by development. This session will include a presentation on activism in architecture by John Murray who will discuss community-led design in Haringey in the 1980s. Other architects and people working in architecture are invited to contribute and be part of this independent network.
Thursday 26 March
2pm: Class Room - Elisabeth Blanchet and Jane Hearn – The Prefab Project
The Prefab Museum is a unique living museum celebrating post-war prefab life and the success of this part of Britain social housing history through art and by sharing memories and archive. Established for just seven months – in Catford on the Excalibur Estate – the Prefab Museum attracted 4,000 visitors from across London, the UK and abroad until its forced early closure in October 2014 due to extensive fire damage.
6.30pm: Focus – Talk and reading Andre Anderson, Raze, Predz UK, Kayden Bell, Jade Snyper, Nathaniel Telemaque – Authors of the Estate
On 5 March 2015, one thousand copies of Authors of the Estate were given to every home on St. Raphael’s Estate, a place in North West London notorious for its crime and poverty. This 98 page publication is a compilation of musings, poems, stories, commentaries and manifestos written by six young thinkers who are also residents of the estate. Come and meet all six authors for a live book reading and an announcement of a new project.
Friday 27 March
6.30pm: Film night – HLM, Habitations Légèrement Modifiées screening, with a 30 min introduction by Municipal Dreams
HLM, Habitations Légèrement Modifiées (2013) directed by Guillaume Meigneux tells the inspiring tale of the transformation of the Bois le Prêtre tower in the suburbs of Paris, France. Previously nicknamed ‘alcatraz’ this block of some 100 social houses was creatively brought back to life by architects, Anne Lacaton and Jean Philippe Vassal with Frédéric Druot whose competition-winning suggestion to regenerate the 1960s tower block was implemented in 2011.
The preceding talk by the blogger Municipal Dreams offers a brief overview of the major trends and characteristics of council housing in London since 1945 – from post-war ideals to sixties ambitions to nineties contempt to the current housing crisis. How did we get to where we are today and what can we learn from the past?
Saturday 28 March
2pm: Homeworks – Stephen Watts poetry reading (30 mins) plus Women, Home and Activism – with contributions by Lorna & Elam Forrester, Alison Marchant, Gillian McIver, Emer Mary Morris, Cathy Ward, Nela Milic, Aysen Dennis and Andrea Luka Zimmerman.