Art Night 2018: things to see and do
Wondering what to see at Art Night this year? We’ve selected some highlights from London’s largest free contemporary arts festival to help you plan your evening.
For the third year running, Art Night fills an area of London with new art and experiences right through to the early hours.
This 7 July, the focus is on Nine Elms, Vauxhall and the South Bank, with both established venues and unexpected spaces hosting new artist commissions, exhibitions and one-off events from 6pm to 6am.
The core of the programme is a collection of 12 projects curated by the Hayward Gallery team, including work by Jeremy Deller, Liv Wynter and Prem Sahib. But there’s lots to do beyond the main projects thanks to local galleries, organisations, artists and curators who are putting on a huge variety of events as part of Art Night Open, all along the Thames riverbank between the South Bank and Battersea Power Station.
To help you plan your night, here’s our guide to the curated projects plus highlights from the rest of the programme – and those all-important tips on where to stay out late.
Art Night 2018 Trail
Marinella Senatore, The London Procession (2018, new commission)
A large-scale participatory performance, Senatore's procession merges dance, music, theatre, protest and sporting activity into one big celebration, moving from Battersea Power Station through Vauxhall, past the London Eye and ending at the Southbank Centre.
Art Night Festival Square
The Art Night hub – drop in for info, food, drink and limited-edition merchandise including tote bags designed by Halil Altindere and stickers by Jeremy Deller. Speaking of whom...
Jeremy Deller, This Place (2018, new commission)
A continuous musical performance on steel drums, This Place is the second collaboration between Deller and South London based Melodians Steel Orchestra UK, following their video for English Magic (2013).
Lara Favaretto, I poveri sono matti (The poor are mad) (2005-18)
Inspired by Favaretto's journey to Rajasthan and her acquaintance with the nomadic Italian Piccaluga family, who work in the circus, I poveri sono matti is a red and blue caravan suspended 30 metres above the ground.
Tamara Henderson, Vision 3: Flowering Transition (2018, new commission)
In a performance taking place the one night per week that New Covent Garden Market’s nocturnal Flower Market is closed, eight characters constructed from materials found at the market move slowly through its corridors.
Suzanne Treister, SURVIVOR (F) + Interplanetary Dresses For Space Travel (2018, new commission)
Treister’s large-scale mural on the hoardings around Battersea Power Station reflects on technological advancement and the ruins of older technologies.
Miao Ying, Happily Contained (2018, new commission)
In Ying’s first work using virtual reality technology, a VR experience casts the viewer as a consumer on a journey in search of utopia and home.
Vajiko Chachkhiani, Life Track (2015)
Presented in a former burial ground, Chachkhiani’s video portrait of a man looking out of a window from a darkened room reflects on the nature of human existence under confinement.
Yuan Goang-Ming, Dwelling (2014)
Depicting a bourgeois living space where all is not as it seems, Goang-Ming’s video continues his investigation into the nuances of ideas of home, dwellings and ruins.
Liv Wynter, Rupture
The artist and activist hosts an evening of live performance and music, featuring emerging artists, dancers, poets and musicians drawing on themes of politics and class, activism and labour, and sexuality and gender.
While you’re in the area: Drop in to a screening of Queertopia, a collection of work that looks at real and mythological queer communities and spaces, and see Turner Prize-winning artist Elizabeth Price’s video installation set in an undisclosed future.
Halil Altindere, Space Refugee (2016-18, new commission and existing work)
Presented in the manner of an old-fashioned space museum, Altindere’s installation follows the journey of a Syrian cosmonaut from popular hero to supporter of the opposition, to his current life as a refugee in Turkey.
Cécile B Evans, Amos’ World is Live (2018, new commission)
In a film and TV studio complex, Evans directs a cast and crew in the final episode of her three-part video and installation work, Amos’ World (2017-ongoing), developed around a fictional community and its architect.
Prem Sahib, 500 sq ft (2018, new commission)
Based on the footprint of a typical new-build, one-bedroom apartment, Sahib’s sculpture – a modular maze-like structure – reflects on the changing landscape of the local area and also alludes to Vauxhall’s club scene.
While you’re in the area: Catch a special performance by dancers from Studio Wayne McGregor in response to Random International’s sculpture Self and Other (for the Albert Embankment), which translates the onlooker’s reflection into light.
Where to stay out late:
Many of the artist projects run 'til 4 and even 6am, but there are a few specific events designed to keep the party going:
Club Night with Lisson Gallery (11pm-4am): a live set by Hans Berg and DJ set from Haroon Mirza follow screenings of intriguing short films by Berg and Nathalie Djurberg.
Duckie (8pm-4am): It’s Pride on 7 July, so there’ll be lots of club nights and parties around the area; here, ‘Night Czar’ Amy Lamé hosts ‘a peek at the queer future’ in the public tunnels of Vauxhall with DJs and live performances.
Bombas & Parr: The Secret Life of the Potato (7pm-4am): Playful design studio Bombas & Parr host a potato-themed party on the Art Night boat. Enjoy tuber-based drinks and snacks as you travel between Art Night destinations – because why not?