The accelerating construction boom in London is causing housing chaos for the capital’s working majority, more and more of whom are leaving the city due to steep rent-rises and lack of truly affordable homes. In his performance at From East to the Barbican, Richard De Domenici will invite people to join a non-partisan, silent funeral cortege as an occasion to reflect and mourn together on these major changes East London is undergoing. The public is invited to follow the cortege paged by a professional funeral director, followed by a horse drawn carriage, a limousine and mini-bus, from Mare Street to the Barbican Centre.
Upon reaching the Barbican, the coffin will be born in by pallbearers and mourners are invited to join a reception with music, eulogies and wine by the lakeside.
Please see programme schedule.
My artist studio of eight years is located in Aldgate East – south of trendy Shoreditch and east of The City, and as such undergoing gentrification from two simultaneous fronts. I’ve watched as the large block of social housing opposite has been emptied of its residents and converted into luxury apartments, many of which will be sold to overseas investors and remain empty. As an artist I am both culpable – Artists moving into run-down spaces are often a predicator to gentrification – and vulnerable – in the next few weeks I will need to move out of my studio as the building owners have sold to developers. This is a story that is repeated across London, and one I propose to explore in this project.