The Wing Asylum


You may remember I posted back in September about the Wing Assignment. Well they’re back. With a new assignment on the horizon and some previously unseen works, the Wing Assignment spread its wings again to an insatiable crowd last Thursday night. Set in the deserted chapel of an old asylum in Peckham, (used as a venue for music video shoots, among other things) the show presented some fabulous works which were not able to be shown last time, as well as re-exhibiting previous favorites. The venue provided a suitably dramatic surrounding for the pieces, heightened by the powerful shadows which danced around the space created by the halogen lights and much-needed patio-style heaters (minus numbers in March? Really?). It resulted in a unique atmosphere; extended shadows, stained glass windows, cracked stone walls, drink, laughter and art. A bit of a bachannal if you like, but less debauched and without the hedonistic cherub (albeit with his wings). Someway through the melee, Nina, artist, curator and art marketeer extraordinaire, managed to quieten the throng to announce the eagerly awaited next assignment.

Christened the Scent Assigment, this year’s project uses the human body as its core fundamental. Not only focusing on one of the major ways in which we, as a species, input exterior information, it will explore the extremely unique individual response we all have to a common experience – the smell. Nina and Asa, the artistic partnership behind the assignment concept, have developed a special one-off scent created specifically for this project and incorporating a feremone in the concoction. Participating artists will need to record and communicate their responses and reactions to this airborne melee in order to take part.

The night before, a series of workshops took place in the asylum, primarily for kids but enjoyed by adults and teens alike. As they painted, stuck and dipped wings made from clay (and some entrepreneurial types sold a few to milling adults) Denise Baker-McClearn kept us warm and sated with a selection of her irresistible cakes, quiches, teas and coffees (see website for recipes, commissions etc).

A small selection of my photographs from the day are shown below, with a load more on Flickr (see tab at top).

To take part in the next Assignment email: and to catch a last chance glimpse at the pieces from the last show get yourself down to the William Road Gallery.

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