The Air Draft comes to Hackney Wick with a weekend of spoken word and live music

We're excited to announce that on Sat 11 & Sun 12 of August, the AirDraft will moor up at Grow for a weekend of spoken word and live music.  This weekend marks the start this floating pavillion's epic journey travelling along the Regents Canal from Hackney Wick to King's Cross. Starting at Grow and stopping at 3 more locations along the way, this unique space will host a series of live events ranging from spoken word, acoustic performances, jazz, improvised comedy to theatre performances. 

The AirDraft is an innovative and new purpose-built inflatable performance venue on a former industrial barge designed by Thomas Randall-Page and Benedetta Rogers and funded by East London based charity Antepavilion.  The golden balloon-like pavilion with is undulating air-supported floor is an intimate yet dramatic and cultural venue like no other.  It is a unique and exceptional environment to experience performances and with its eye-catching form it will be a striking addition to the cultural landscape of the canal.

EXPERIENCE THE AIRDRAFT AT GROW

SAT 11 & 12 AUGUST
We'll be holding 2 separate events at Grow on each day of the weekend.  The capacity of the AirDraft is limited so we recommend getting down early as entry for performances will be on a first come, first served basis.  The indoor and outside bars will be serving a range of organic and draft drinks with a BBQ & Meze menu by Slow Fire London from the kitchen.

SAT 11 AUGUST
COLLUSION (1-11PM

Collusion is an all-day festival, which showcases music, poetry, and other forms in a variety of styles.  The event is free, and a local mental health charity will benefit from a % of the bar.  Confirmed performances include: Shoreditch Knights,  Amy Cutler,  Antony John and the DJs/Vibe will be postpunk, Italodisco, house, electronica, interesting old school indie, maybe some goth, guitar things, odd bits of folk, good jazz, etc..

SUN 12 AUGUST
ACOUSTIC SPECIAL - GROW LIVE (1-6PM)
Every month, we have an acoustic night at Grow on a Thursday where a range of musicians from across London who span genres take the stage.  For this special event, we go onto the AirDraft for a new experience away from the busy London streets and hear some soul-baring music, insightful lyrics and musical storytelling.

 


 

THE LAB take over the GROW's Eco Pod with music, art and a community radio show...

We've joined forces with Studio Bark to launch the 'Grow Eco Pod', located by Grow in Main Yard.   The design principles of this low-impact 'U-Build' pod came out of Studio Bark's desire to make construction truly affordable and self-built, opening up the prospect of self-led construction to a greater proportion of the general public.  The structure incorporates a long pop-up hatch window (powered by reclaimed car-boot pistons), a modular (locally sourced) Douglas Fir skin, and modular green roof.

The 'Grow Pod' started life as a Garden Room for an East London community centre and following its most recent move to part of Grow's eco-system, it is being adopted by a number of different residents to use as their creative home to test out new practices and projects.

Current residents artists and musicians Pete Bennett & Joel Smith who have just begun a two month residency as THE LAB. They will be working on individual and collaborative projects with local musicians, artists and the community at large. These include recorded music, both live and electronic. A ten-part community radio show/sound archive of the area is being recorded and compiled, to be aired weekly on local station  Wick Radio, in conjunction with locally based social enterprise Inner World Arts CIC and part funded by the Near Neighbours Grant from The Centre For Theology & Community. 

Joel Smith will be working on his own musical compositions and written pieces; Pete Bennett his series of paintings, drawings, sculptures, music and writings. Poignantly, The LAB’s work and research over the following weeks, will be backdropped by the changes in land use; demolition; development; gentrification and subsequent community displacement in the Hackney Wick area. A situation both artists have found themselves on the sharp edge of, for some years.  Keep up to date on the LAB on their blog.

An invitation to get involved on Wick Wednesday - 18 APRIL.

To mark the first Wick Wednesday on 18 April (6-9pm), THE LAB invite you inside to hear more about what they're up to and if you want to, record your views in a form a VOX POP (which is taken from the Latin phrase 'Vox populi' that literally means "voice of the people") and suggest a song to add to their show.

After you've been to the LAB, it's then time for free live jazz at Grow!  Join the Rio Quartet plus special guests for this intimate weekly jazz jam with DJ Jazzintime spinning vinyl in between live sets.  As it's Wick Wednesday in addition to the usual 10% off the menu, you can get 10% off the speakeasy cocktails too... We all hope to see you there!

About Wick Wednesday
Wick Wednesday is a new initiative led by Creative Wick that promotes a coordinated creative and cultural events program encouraging locals and visitors to experience a life less ordinary across a whole day in London’s last remaining hidden gem – Hackney Wick.

About Studio Bark
www.studiobark.co.uk
Studio Bark is a Hackney Wick based pioneering architectural practice that delivers inspiring, yet cost-conscious environmental architecture with a hands-on approach to research, design and fabrication. Studio Bark have been developing their low-impact U-Build system for the past two years alongside engineering firm ‘Structure Workshop’ and CNC workshop ‘Cut and Construct’. Using modern CNC cutting technology means pieces can be accurately pre-cut to size and assembled using basic tools and with minimal construction experience..

About Grow Hackney
We are an independently run space and an experiment in ethical business, which includes working with local artists, musicians on collaborative projects to host free events where everyone is welcome. We pay London Living Wage and partner with community projects to share and nurture local talent. Grow has no investment and is built by local Hackney Wickers and relys on the sharing economy of the area. Profits go back into the community.

WickScapes: Artist Gareth Jones responds to daily life in the Grow Eco-Pod - See his work on Wick Wednesday - 21 February 2018

Artist Gareth Jones has spent the last two months as artist-in-residence in the Grow Eco-Pod, which is located in Main Yard outside Grow.  This pod is designed by local sustainable architecture practice, Studio Bark, and its purpose is to be self-built and to help make construction more affordable.  To mark the end of Gareth's residency, and Wick Wednesday on 21 February, we invite you to enter the pod to see the work he made during this residency as well as a painting which was recently shortlisted for the Royal Academy Summer Show.  The studio will be 6-9pm.  Grow will also be hosting our weekly live jazz  jam and offer 10% off all orders from the kitchen.

About his residency, Gareth says:

"The location of the Eco-Pod gives views of the unseen sources of the many noises, sitting elevated above the yard at Wallis Road, there is a birds-eye view of the comings and goings.  A hub of activity: all sorts of people come and go; artists, delivery couriers, kitchen staff, skip-divers, local industry, estate agents, security guards (and dogs), scaffolders, landlords, parents and children, party goers.  Performers in a transient unperceived relationship: separate yet co-dependent.

Panoramic view from Grow Eco-Pod

Adapting the Eco-Pod (from live/work space to studio) was simplicity itself, half a day to remove the bunk beds located at one end turned the space into an adequately spacious studio. Without drafts or damp the insulated environment just needed a little heat in these colder months (which is maintained nicely) from a low powered electric heater. 

Once the space was ready, working in a new location needs time to bed in, much like research, truer working can be challenging until a thread appears to pull leading to new focus.  At some point the inertia of previous influences either die away or combine - melding into the newness, developing towards new ideas.  Small and numerous exercises (to find ones feet in the space) connect the senses to the kinetics of making - drawing out the hidden reactions to be translated into marks, leading eventually to the creation of a body of new work, with the working title  'WickScapes'.

Focusing on the environment, the sounds and chaos of demolition and, in parallel, the ideas of loss (physical and psychological) small studies and exercises developed into emotive mark making.  Monochromatic mediums laid down using frottage of found surfaces and tools marks, textures, and graininess developed into concentrated representations of angst and dislocation - as a reaction to seemingly unfettered disruption?  The making is a physically demanding process - made in one visit to the work until complete, it feels as if fight has taken place.  What remains is a record of a series of acts that accrete to form a document of a psychological journey pondering and reflecting destruction, disruption, and dislocation in Hackney Wick.

Hackney WickED Open Studios 2017 was full of music, art and a lot heart !

Each year, Grow is proud to be part of Hackney WickED DIY Open Studios and 2017 (28-30 July) was no different. This festival gives us a chance to the celebrate the creativity in the area and showcase what happens at Grow week-in-week-out.

This year, we had a jam-packed programme with local talent and some new collaborations in the form of performance, music, participation and art - often all at the same time!

On Friday night, we were excited to host the launch party with a show-stopping line-up which started at 9pm, after the opening of the Group Show across the canal at Here East. This group show was curated by artist Gavin Turk and Hackney WickED director, Anna Malony, and included over 65 artists, including some from Grow Studios, showcasing the wide-ranging quality of the artistic practices across Hackney Wick and Fish Island.

At Grow, we were treated to a stirring performance by Grow favourite Hotdoggrrrl and the Sesame Buns, followed by the amazing beatboxing talent of artist Reeps One, plus sets by local guest DJs Jessi, Ghost Trap and Steffi Timanti.

The following day we put on the Grow Village Fete which created a spectacle within a Spectacle to free us even for a moment. This Village Fete focused on collaboration. Despite the rain, through interactions, sociality and play we tried to disentangle ourselves from our everyday lives. Franco ‘Bifo’ Berardi says if we can disentangle we may imagine other possible futures, already in our present, but which we have yet to uncover.  We had manifestations of ‘splat the rat’, ‘human fruit machine’, ‘sponge stock’, ‘hoopla’, a raffle, Canababe cakes and plants from local nursery Growing Concerns, a memorable live performance from brass band, Das Brass culminating in Mixed Bag Of Nuts DJs taking us into the night.  We also had a host of volunteers who sold cakes and played games, helping to raise awareness and £280 for local mental health and arts charity, Core Arts.

The artist behind the fete is co-founder of Grow, Jordanna Greaves. Her work is a humorous protest at what it is to comply to the power systems around us and asks ‘can we play to become something new?’ She often works in collaboration, and this Village Fete, as do all the events at Grow, relies on the sharing economy of artists and musicians of the surrounding area, and everyone who walks through its doors.

On the Sunday,  'Hackney Wick Floating Museum' pulled up canalside in the form of two 30" narrow boats that, in tandem, displaying on their flat roofs, the sculptures of Californian artist Jay J. Filipowicz.

The sun came out long enough to have our resident jazz quartet play canalside and for this special performance, they were joined by Japanese comtemporary dancer, Misa Koide who improvised to their fresh and energetic jazz repertoire. We were also joined DJs Jazzintime and Komajazzz who played the best jazz vinyl in between two sets.

To finish the weekend long-programme, we were joined by members of the Blackcat Soundsystem of Fish Island giving us live music of strickly roots and culture vibrations with a mostly improvised content and selectors into the evening.

We crammed a lot in, and that was just at Grow! There was so many artists and musicians across Hackney Wick and Fish Island sharing their talents and passions and we thank everyone for joining in and making this annual celebration a reality. For a full round up and pics from across the open studios, have a read of Hackney WickED's roundup.

Thanks to Moe Sekiya, Anna Malone and Hackney WickED CIC for the following photos.

Femme in London - Alok Vaid-Menon and Friends take the stage at Grow in Hackney Wick

On Sunday 26 February, we were thrilled to be joined by nonbinary transfeminine writer, entertainer, and performance artist, Alok Vaid-Menon for a night of poetry, comedy, and performance. On stage, we also welcomed Travis Alabanza & DJ Dae.

The audience were treated to powerful performances asking questions such as: What feminine part of yourself did you have to destroy in order to survive in this world? At what point does femininity become synonymous with apology? Who hurt the people who hurt you? The whole event which left the audience touched, energised and inspired on a Sunday evening in February...

About Alok Vaid Menon
Alok Vaid-Menon is a nonbinary transfeminine writer, entertainer, and performance artist. Alok has been invited to perform, speak, and facilitate at universities, conferences, and organizations across the world; their work has been featured in various outlets like HBO, MTV, The Guardian, Buzzfeed, The New York Times, The New Yorker, TEDx and more.

About Travis Alabanza
Travis Alabanza is a London based, Black, transfemme performance artist and writer. Their work combines live poetry, soundscapes, projection and theatrics to create work around their survival. Their 2015/16 show Stories of a Queer Brown Muddy Kid toured across the UK, selling out venues including the RVT & Housman's Bookstore. As well as being one of the 2016/17 Artist in Residences at the Tate, in the last year their work has been featured in Artsy, Manon, Wildabout - as well as performing in venues both locally and internationally. Alabanza is keen to create and discuss ways in which art can be used with queer youth, and their new show BURGERZ will be showing at Hackney Showroom in March.

About Dj Dae
Dj Dae is a Queer gender bending Pisces hailing from South East London by way of Nigeria and Cameroon. Blending all your favourite tracks with your soon to be favourite Afrobeat tracks until your bed calls your name louder than the music- When in doubt, look for them on the dancefloor

Alok Vaid-Menon

Fear of Fluffing start their 2017 residency at Grow with electronic meanderings

If you haven't experienced the Fear of Fluffing before, you must.  Every situation is unique but equally hypnotic.  With many guises, whether their on stage, on the road, canal side; they inhabit their surrounding and invite you to join the ride.

On Thursday 23 Feb, for the first event of their 2017 residency ay Grow, Reuben Sutherland and The Fear of Fluffling set up for some electrical meanderings, projections, performance and DJ set and it was a delight for the ears, eyes and mind...

With thanks to Timothy Brannan for the photography.

Art and music to support the Minesweeper Collective they lost their home to fire...

On 5 January 2017, the home of the Minesweeper Collective, a boat based in Deptford, sadly burned down. Thankfully no one was hurt but artists' work and studios were destroyed overnight.

Many of the Minesweeper Collective's artists have also performed at Grow over the past few years including artist and Butoh dancer, Mai Nguyen Tri, who organised this fundraiser to help support them. They are an amazingly creative bunch who now need to rebuild their project so thanks to everyone who came down to this event to show solidarity and support them. You can still donate online.

Performances included: Mai & Ampers&nd, The Dublo, Grassy Noel & Ape and on the decks was DJ Calculator.

A series of free informal talks about art, politics, permaculture...

In November and December 2016, together with Marie Brenneis we hosted an informal talk and discussion about Aesthetics, Politics, Economics, Globalisation, Capitalism and the Environment. These talks were free, open to all and existed to share information and experiences.  Some of the talks were also recorded and broadcasted by Wick Radio

8 Nov // Neoliberalism
One of Grow's co-founders Reuben Jacobs talked about 'Neoliberalism' so we all can gain a better understanding of how it affects global and local politics as well as your everyday life, through its domination of world economics.
LISTEN TO REUBEN'S TALK ON WICK RADIO

15 Nov // West to East London - historical geography
Jacob F-n, shared his experience and research as a historical geographer. He took us on a journey from West to East London as we learned how London's colonial past is still woven into the geography all around us today and the importance of looking into, and learning from, the past...
LISTEN TO JACOB'S TALK ON WICK RADIO

22 Nov // Bucky Fuller & the 60's Modernist movement
Stuart Glenday shared the story of American anti-establishment visionary and inventor of the geodesic dome, Richard Buckminster Fuller (AKA Bucky).  Also, Stuart's hand-made geodesic installations are hanging from Grow's ceiling so come anytime to enjoy their hypnotic qualities.
LISTEN TO STUART'S TALK ON WICK RADIO

29 Nov // Art & Censorship
Julia Farrington from Index on Censorship shared her experience of researching how law can and should play in supporting the arts (read more about her work, Art and the Law). We also discussed how censorship affects us all. This organisation is really important as it campaigns for, and defends, free expression worldwide.

6 Dec // Permaculture and the role of art
Hannah Gardiner shared her experience and knowledge of permaculture, sustainable living and the role of art within these areas. As Hannah said, it is generative subject... and we all pondered the questions raised and learned a lot from Hannah's research, all whilst her cartoonist friend illustrating the discusson as we went!

Mai @ Grow with music, art and performance

Another magical day of art, music and performance organised by friend and long-term supporter of Grow, the artist and dancer Mai Nguyen Tri. Click below to see photos and short films of this amazing event and we say a huge thanks to Mai for all she does to celebrate creativty and positivity with us and across Hackney Wick and thanks again also to all who participated.

On Halloween our beat, bop and blues night got devilishly dark....

Thanks to Hotdog Grrrl & The Sesame Buns [horrifying garage rock n roll], Bozo Zoo [spooky sax and double bass blues], The Dublo [backwater blues skinned to the bone], Molly’s Daggers [blues rock boogie from beyond the grave], Jonny Halifax & The Howling Truth [zombie blues preacher]. Thanks to Will of Edge Events Photography  for capturing the best bits!

Could you be bothered to see The Apathy Band with Bob and Roberta Smith?

 

The Apathy Band are coming back to Grow. The Apathy Band Demoralize the Motivated. The Apathy Band never rehearse. The Apathy Band can't go on.

Usually found on Resonance 104.4fm, band members include: Bobandroberta Smith, George Lionel Barker Alice Hitazo, George Cleghorn, Leonardo Ulian and Jessica Voorsanger

Here's a few photos from their performance, if you can be bothered...

Hackney WickED Open DIY Studios 2017 at Grow

FRI 29 - SUN 31 JULY 2016

Hackney Wick artists are coming together to organise a DIY Open Studios event at locations in and around Hackney Wick & Fish Island;  to celebrate the artist and creative community that currently resides in the area.

We’re excited to announce artist XENZ will be displaying some of his studio work on our walls throughout the weekend.

FRI NIGHT: BEAT BOP & BLUES Hackney Wicked Special w. Hotdog Grrrl & The Sesame Buns
SAT DAYTIME: Live Jazz and workshops by the The Gaia Gallery, Hackney Herbal and photographer Moé Sekiya with music into the night.
SUN DAYTIME: We’re joined by a live brass band, ceramicist Adele Brydges and from 4pm It’s Nearly Friday take over with music and spoken word.

Expect the unexpected with DADA Night at Grow

Every Thursday at Grow@Grow we celebrate music, art, conversation and community and on Thursday 7 July, Marie Brenneis presents a night of DADA fun!  Expect the unexpected presented in a truly Hackney Wick DIY style.  If Marcel Duchamp were alive, he’d be here!

Featuring local artists:
Fear of Fluffing
Janis Sokolovskis
DJ sets from Dan DADA and Reuben Sutherland
Joel Smith
Pol McLennon
Urbororo
Customes are encouraged.