The London Open: Artists Takeover

  • Ian Giles_Smells Like Lit Candle High Res

    Ian Giles, Smells Like Gay Pride

  • Actions on stillness by Imann Gaye

    Imann Gaye, Actions on Stillness

  • RomeikeCurlice

    Review of the film, from the Evening News (detail),17 May 1955, from Sherriff’s press agency Romeike & Curtice Ltd (SHC ref 2332/5/2/20)

  • I Trusted You EP Cover_Misha Faulty

    Misha Faulty, I Trusted You. Credit : Leon Davies

  • Hussina Raja_Ruth Cook

    Hussina Raja, Bidēśi Mahilā. Credit: Ruth Cook

  • A89A1622

    Evangelia Dimitrakopoulou

  • ©Stinsensqueeze_unreasonable-silence-05

    Unreasonable Silence, published by common-editions 2019. Image credit: Stinsensqueeze, 2022

Past Event

This event was on Thurs 7 July, 6 - 9pm

Access Information

Films, Music, Workshops

Celebrate the vibrancy of London’s art community as Whitechapel Gallery is taken over by an incredible roster of artists! Contributors include artists featuring in The London Open 2022, as well as those working here at the Gallery. In the spirit of The London Open, which has been a launch-pad for leading artists for over 90 years, expect cutting-edge music, performance, film screenings, workshops and more from artists including Ian Giles, Candida Powell Williams, Eloise Hawser, Misha Farrant, Alice Thompson, and more. All events and activities are free.  

Please Note: Due to limited capacities, we will operate a one in, one out system in select areas throughout the Gallery. 

First Thursdays Takeover : Front of House Team

Gallery Foyer

With The London Open’s ethos as inspiration, the gallery’s Front of House team take over the foyer with DJ sets and moving image works, representing an exciting breadth of in-house artistic talent.

Performing artists include Misha Faulty, Alice Thompson, Agostino Quaranta, Evangelia Dimitrakopoulou and Alvarezz.

Showreel artists include Elsie Plimmer, Alejandra Gissler, Sadie St Hilaire, Si Chen, Shani Haquin-Gerade, Andia Coral Newton, Tallulah De Castro-Gray, Katie Town, Raffia Rahman, Francesca Scott-Sills and Gabriella Fabbriani.

Unreasonable Silence: Candida Powell Williams

The London Open Galleries

Ask the deck a question in a tarot card reading performance with artist Candida Powell-Williams, as she interprets the card’s answer through the meanings that materials and shape can convey. 

Using her own specially created emblematic tarot deck formed of collages of symbols, photos and drawings, the readings explore how we make sense of visual patterns and the connection between images and narrative, exploring the mutability of archetypes and drawing on and filtering the constellation of semiotic and cultural references that informed the making of the tarot deck. A different poem could be formed each time the cards are pulled in a new sequence, or meaningful coincidences made with events in your own life. 

Hussina Raja

Zilkha Auditorium 

With her practice exploring social-political issues surrounding notions of identity, heritage, belonging and culture, multidiscipinary artist and performer Hussina Raja presents a selection of films for the evening.  Raja will be joined by London Open artists’ Asuf Ishaq, Juliana Kasumu and Michelle Williams Gamaker, as they show and discuss their works in conversation with one another, followed by a Q&A.

Conversation & Q&A will start at 7.20pm and finish at 8.20pm

Pride Smells Like: Ian Giles

Galleries 5 & 6 

Artist Ian Giles will present a new sensory performance to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of London’s first Pride march. Giles has created an evocative scented candle based on conversations with members of the Gay Liberation Front who were present at the protest in 1972. LGBTQI+ performers will recount scent memories from Pride, which Ian has collected from friends, artists, writers and activists.  

A limited edition candle that ‘Smells Like Gay Pride’ by Ian Giles will be available to buy from the Whitechapel Bookshop.  

Performance based on Pride memories collected from:

Amelia Abraham  / Sam Ashby / Jeremy Atherton-Lin  / James Bell / AA Bronson / Michael Bullock / Francesco Dama / Josh-Susan Enright / Iarlaith Ni Fheorais / Oliver James Hymans / Jasmine Johnson / Gert Jonkers / David Lock / Nicholas Marrast-Lewis / James McDermott / Fiontan Moran / Dan de la Motte / Harold Offeh / Mathew Wayne Parkin / Rachel Pimm / Louis Rembges / Prem Sahib / Jaap van der Schaaf / David Shenton / Lalah-Simone Springer

Performed by: Josh-Susan Enright / Louis Rembges / James Dougherty / Loz Chandler

The Cuttings Bureau: Eloise Hawser

Archive Reading Room 

Artist Eloise Hawser will lead a workshop unearthing some of the complex histories and evolving realities of newspaper production, circulation and collection, focusing on sites in and around Whitechapel. Participants will consider several news archives, collections, distributors and producers, while co-creating a multi-layered map of ‘the news ’as it is created, consumed and understood through time. 

The Best of the BF Artist Film Festival: Beth Fox

Creative Studio 

Artist Beth Fox presents a selection from the archive of the BF Artist Film Festival, a nomadic project that partnered with different artist-led spaces around the country from 2016 onwards. Showcasing short narrative films, documentaries, experimental/essay films, animation, music videos and video collage, selections are made through an international open call to artists for work under 10 minutes in length. Beth Fox is interested in storytelling, humour and pop culture so expect voiceovers, a few wigs, some appropriated cartoons and at least one, big musical number.  

Screening films by: Jim and Sid, Tom Mason, Ankita Anand, Harriet Rickard, Marta Krześlak, Hannah Blissett, Christian Noelle Charles, Nura Catalan, Alex Culshaw, Cindy Hinant, Rosie Gibbens, Izzy McEvoy, Grant Petrey, Louis Scantlebury, Karolina Magnusson Murray, Flora Bradwell, Campbell McConnell, David Sherry & Imann Gaye. 

About: Ian Giles

Ian Giles, born Gloucester 1985, lives and works in London. His social practice fosters new networks to record and celebrate LGBTQI+ histories and contemporary experiences.   

Upon graduating from the Slade MFA, 2012 Ian was a LUX Associate Artist. Recent exhibitions, performances and screenings include: From Here A Home Was Imagined: Part 3, Annex at CCA Glasgow (2022); On Railton Road, Jerwood New Work Fund (2021); After BUTT at Kunstnerforbundet, Oslo (2020); Outhouse at Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge & Firstsite, Colchester (2019); Studio Four at OUTPOST, Norwich (2019); Trojan Horse / Rainbow Flag presented by Gasworks at Bethnal Green Working Men’s Club, London (2019); After BUTT, NY Art Book Fair at MoMA PS1, New York (2018); Video Club: Sex Talks at Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2018) and After BUTT at Chelsea Space, London (2018). 

Ian was an inaugural winner of the Shannon Michael Cane Award presented by Printed Matter, New York in 2018. Residencies include Hospitalfield, Scotland in 2017. He was a New Geographies commissioned artist 2018-20, his resulting performance and installation was acquired by the V&A Purchase Grant Fund for Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery. He was a recipient of the Jerwood New Work Fund 2019-2021.  

Forthcoming projects include an exhibition at MIMA, Middlesbrough in 2023.  

About: Candida Powell-Williams

Candida Powell-Williams (b. 1984, London) graduated from the Royal College of Art, London in 2011 and the Slade School of Fine Art London in 2009. Her sculptures and performances explore slippages to memory and storytelling over time. They are informed by an exploration of visual patterns and human ways of ordering the chaotic universe, examining the connection between objects, action and belief through a female lens.  

Selected exhibitions: Southwark Park Galleries (2022); The Gates of Apophenia, Bosse & Baum London (2019); Command Lines, Void Gallery Northern Ireland (2019); Lessness, still quorum, performance, Serpentine Galleries, London (2018); Boredom and its Acid Touch, Frieze Live, London (2017); Tongue Town, Museum of Modern Art, São Paulo (2017); Cache, Art Night Associate Programme, London (2017); Vernacular History of the Golden Rhubarb, Bosse & Baum Gallery, London (2017); PIC performance festival, Melbourne, Australia (2016); Coade’s Elixir-an occupation, Hayward Gallery, London (2014). Powell-William’s is the recipient of the 2018 Mother Art Prize with a group show at Mimosa House London (2019). She was recently Artist in Residence at The Warburg Institute London and other awards include the Sainsbury Scholarship at the British School at Rome (2012-13), the Paris Residency at Cite Internationale des Arts, (2010), Eric and Jean Cass Sculpture Award (2010-2011). She is represented by Bosse & Baum Gallery London. 

About: Eloise Hawser

Eloise Hawser is a resident artist at London’s Somerset House with extensive UK and international exhibits. Working with sculpture, film, and digital platforms, Hawser explores patterns of circulation and waste across time. In 2018 she held a major show at Somerset House, By the deep, by the mark, with support from the Port of London Authority and Thames Tideway. Her first solo exhibition took place in 2015 at the ICA. A recurring theme across Hawser’s work is the circulation of news media. She exhibited a series of discarded lithographic printing plates used by British newspapers at the New Museum Triennial (Surround Audience, New York, 2016), and led a public night-walk with Somerset House, ‘A New Way To Set’, charting the residual histories of news media production on Fleet Street. Hawser’s group shows include History of Nothing (White Cube, 2016) and Weight of Data (Tate Britain, 2015). Her installation The Tipping Hall was presented at the Istanbul Biennial 2019 before its exhibition at the Montpellier Contemporain 2020. Hawser’s practice often involves public and collective engagement, most recently across her 800,000 tonnes series of waste management tours with Focal Point Gallery (Southend, 2019).