2nd October 2005
Exhibition Road, London SW7 5ZG
Big Draw meets Carnival
What we have here is nothing less than a unique coming together of three Grand Projects of the country’s cultural zeitgeist. Well… bits of them, anyway. For here we are on Exhibition Road, home of some of the nation’s most formidable creative and learning institutions, and this afternoon we are at the launch event for the annual Big Draw Festival – the largest of its kind in the world.
And to give this launch a bit of a party feel, we have part of Notting Hill Carnival, which is also quite a Big Thing amongst the happening set, I’m led to believe.
Exactly how much the music and dance elements – led by the irrepressible Fox Carnival gang and the seemingly ubiquitous Mandinga team – and the drawing elements manage to blend here isn’t really the point: together they’ve brought a lot of people to the street and managed to get, well, at least some of them engaged in drawing activities.
The event is also demonstrating (not for the first time) just how wonderful Exhibition Road could be when it’s not full of motor vehicles whizzing from South Ken to the Albert Hall. Lo and behold – and after many years of wrangling – in 2012 the ‘shared space’ innovation arrived here. Which is a great success… or a disaster, depending on your point of view.
This is what the very arty Beds in Parks have to say about the street, not that it’s entirely clear what that might be…