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Over the next few weeks, all eyes will be on the architectural wonders of the East End’s Olympic Park. But that’s not where all the interest lies. Less than a mile from the action, local Hackney artist Alex Chinneck has found true beauty in the broken factory windows of an industrial wasteland and staged an artistic ‘intervention’ to transform a former cannabis factory into an amazing public art project. 

Chinneck spent a gruelling four months removing the detritus of its former life – bags of soil, wiring, grow bags, water tanks, plant pots and heat lamps.

After clearing the site, Chinneck duplicated one of the smashed panes 312 times, then used it to replace each original factory window.


“There is something mesmerising about the way light catches a broken window pane, not only is the glass shattered but so is the reflection,” says Chinneck.


Fast becoming a ‘Hackney landmark’, the former factory, which is on the corner of Mare Street and Tudor Road, will soon be demolished, the work disappearing with it. So if you can’t make it to the 100 metres…

Title: Telling the Truth Through False Teeth

Artist: Alex Chinneck in association with Sumarria Lunn Gallery

Location: corner of Mare Street and Tudor Road, Hackney, E9 7FE

Installation on view: now until November 2012


Brighton, been there. Margate, over it. You want the hippest place on the coast? Head for Hastings Old Town. There’s the Jerwood and various retro shops on the High Street, but the best find of all has to be Hendy’s Home Store.


With years as a food writer, photographer and stylist behind him, proprietor Alistair Hendy’s avid collectors eye has finally found a home in a restored Georgian house that’s like stepping back in time.


With the feel of a colonial general store, expect to find enamel washbowls, reclaimed copper baths, bolts of linen and the kind of household essentials you never knew you needed (spout brush, anyone?)

Everything is beautifully styled, from the dresser load of Beryl ware by the front door, to the mantel groupings of Sulphuric Acid bottles.


While the bare floorboards, stripped plaster walls, bakerlite light switches and ‘Homestore brown’ paint look 100% original, it’s hard to believe less than a year ago the space was home to a 1970s bistro.

Lord only knows how much Nitromors was needed to vintagise the whole place but it was well worth it.

There’s an ooh and an aah around every corner.

A.G. Hendy & Co. Home Store, 36 High Street, Hastings Old Town, TN34 3ER. (NB site still in development so bookmark for later!)

Matthew Rose is an American artist based in Paris, as his site so succinctly says. We love collage at Livingetc. And he has a new show starting on September 1 at Storie in Paris. Which we hope to pop into when we’re in town for Maison.

It was hard not to get a little bit emotional at the human endeavour in Paris yesterday, as 160 or so cyclists crossed the finish line of the Tour de France, after 3,430.5km up and down some of Europe’s steepest mountains. Had a tear in my eye, but muscle and lyrca whipping past at 45 miles an hour will do that to a girl. More of the actual reason I was in Paris in the November issue of Livingetc, plus the Hussein Chalayan retrospective and a brilliant exhibition on plastic toys to follow on this here blog…

From tomorrow until 29 May, Rise Art will be taking over the exhibition space at Luna & Curious, where Rise Art Select Artist Dai Roberts (top, buy it here) will create a room installation that will transform his modernist-inspired screen prints into a spatial experience, allowing the viewer to ‘wander’ inside his artistic universe. Well, that sounds rather wonderful to us. In addition, Rise Art will also showcase limited-edition prints by artists Pedro Guimaraes (middle) and Ting-Ting Cheng (bottom), two photographers chosen by Rise Art’s board of curators as Select Artists with a fascinating take on travel and still-life photography.

And if it’s true that everyone’s a critic, this is the time to prove it – Rise Art will be giving away a £100 gift voucher to the visitor that can write the best micro-review on Dai’s UNIT installation which, along other contributions, will be published and shared on the site.

After so many apologies in 2010 to the building’s postmen for having to bring ridiculous packages up to our office, it’s our New Year’s Resolution. So, we’ll shop vicariously through you.

You’ve only got a few hours to bag this bargain, an unusual Sixties Anglepoise

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Livingetc has been a gushing fan of Bodie and Fou for a very long time, and is very pleased to announce an extra 10% off everything on the site, including sale items, until 31 January at midnight. Browse at your pleasure and then enter the code LIVINGETC at checkout. Happy shopping. You can also win a year’s subscription to Livingetc here.

Norman Rockwell spent 60 years documenting everyday life in America through his illustrations, and while his best-known works are a bit apple sauce and white picket fence, he also recorded political events and the civil rights movement. Which you will see if you go to Dulwich Picture Library, for the first exhibition of his original works in this country. It will include all 322 covers of the Saturday Evening Post, created between 1916 and 1963, along with illustrations for advertisements, magazines and books – providing a comprehensive look at his career. Create your own moment of Americana here.

Every year the brilliant Geffrye Museum (interior design in England since 1600 to the present day) decorates each of its rooms with authentic Christmas decorations. From austere to kitsch in eleven wonderful rooms…

Why is this proud pooch looking so pleased with himself? Just had a little pet pampering down at Harrods, that’s why…

London’s premier department store has just opened a day spa aimed at  stylish (and demanding) pets…

…offering everything from basic grooming to animal reiki and personal training, a session makes the ideal Christmas gift for the VIP (very important pet) who has everything.

Caesar shows off his on trend turquoise ‘pawdicure’ (and his master, Patrick Cox).

The Pet Spa is located on Harrods Fourth Floor. Treatments start from £59.95.

As the team behind Livingetc, the UK’s leading magazine for modern interiors, we’re always out and about, scouting for inspiration. And when we see something that makes our design minds flutter with joy, we’ll share it with you here. To purchase the digital version of the magazine, click here.

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