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A series of questions inviting the residents of Deptford to consider how we collectively design a sustained ecological project, whether they be gardeners, councillors, performers, campaigners, developers, shop owners or bloggers…
This is a live chat room, which you can create your own username for if you wish to remain anonymous! Please feel free to comment, add suggestions and ask questions about the project.
London's Lost Garden Promotional Film
Flip through the full script here or click the PDF link to view online.
If there's no sound check that the volume bar at the bottom of the video has 5 blue bars!
It was the year that never was, and Convoys Wharf lay dormant.
Once, long ago, it housed a lush Elysium, of rare experiments and strange plants.
But, through heavy ills the garden sank beneath. It was thought it would never return to share its good health and clean fruits with the people of Deptford.
London’s Lost Garden. The parterres and great orchard of an experiment now dissipated amongst the sunken trenches.
What it is and could be are the same. Peer above the cladded fence and observe shrubs breaking grey concrete seas and barbed wire fences. Fertile soil stirs restlessly to sprout great trunks and shining stems as vibrant theatres.
It was the year that never was, and I was busy gardening my room. I gardened the floor and gardened the windows because I did not much like the view. In the year that never was there are only static deadlines. We are suspended in stagnant water and I am hoping to stop the rot.
Faint voices on the airwaves demand we must all ‘return to normal’ by late afternoon:
“I have outline planning permission for 3,500 new homes for the Convoys Wharf site! The restoration of any part of the garden is infeasible!”
Arrogant mass ripping steel from the slabs! Do we want ‘Normal’?
We are rooted bodies - a tangled mass. Growing grotesque but growing!
With haste I garden down the road and garden around the corner to Convoys Wharf.
I rupture the slumber and heavy soil does rise.
I warn the Garden that they are sure to be buried forever if Normal organises their self-serving self.
“We must all run away! These starch’t and affected designes smell more of paint than of flowers.”
We must harvest a performance to re-construct the fate of Convoys Wharf in Deptford! Perform and exist outside Normal, so that it may not frivolously waste and discard.
“Touch the ground you walk on. Feel it and grow something you may all share in! Unfold the soil so that we may prevent it from turning stale and Lo! the limber vine plaits leafy bowers!”
It was the year that never was, and the city gardened good health and clean fruits.
Three effigies stand their post. Sentinels of a now when we learnt we are not afterthoughts in a ceaseless drive to produce.
We are post-digging, deeply embedded in our earthy conclusion.
We learnt to nurture, performing the town with little gardens. Heavy as moss and soil we sank into the fabric.
About the Designer:
Jack Lowerson’s design practice focuses on how environmental, social and political discourse can be re-interpreted through co-creation and participation.
His process applies film and theatre making techniques to research and draw out the rich narratives and hidden histories of objects and sites.
Combining photography, script writing, movement and props design, Jack examines how materiality constructs realities and how film and performance utilise fictions to disrupt and subvert traditional forms of knowledge.
Current work pulls from eco-scenography to explore how sustainable forms of making with organic materials influence costume and props design, becoming tools that introduce performance participants to more connected, ecological forms of living.