On a lovely warm day I walked into the gardens of St Luke’s and drew a picture.
The red brick building is the Ironmonger Row Baths designed by AWS Cross, opened in 1931 as public baths (for washing – not swimming!) and laundry. They were needed because:
“The case seemed unarguable given the statistics presented by the new Baths and Washhouses Committee. Of 20,005 families in the borough, 4917 shared a single room and 7253 lived in two rooms. Of 12,000 dwellings, just 500 – only 4 per cent – had private baths.”
This was less than 90 years ago – my parents’ generation. The data is quoted by the wonderful website “Municipal Dreams” on the link below:
The Baths have recently (c. 2013) been refurbished and now have swimming pools and a spa and gym. They are still owned and run by the local authority, Islington.
The tall tower is the 42-storey Carrara Tower of the 250 City Road development, by Foster + Partners, under construction.
The shorter tower at the back on the right is Canaletto, which must be one of the hardest towers in London to draw. Those weird curved structures defeat my sense of perspective. Perhaps that’s the idea.
This architectural masterpiece, created by internationally-acclaimed UNStudio, has set a new standard for residential developments in London. (CanalettoLondon.com)
The building on the left of the picture is Burnhill House, run by Keniston Housing Association. Residents here are running a campaign to try to moderate plans to redevelop Finsbury leisure centre, which is off to the left of my drawing, and in front their building. Their banners adorn their balconies.
In the centre front of the drawing is a strange cage-type object on a stalk.
This is a bird-feeder, enclosed in a wire cube. It looks like a cage or house, or an artwork. Birds do go in there. I watched them.
About one and a half hours, drawn and coloured on location. Double page spread in Jackson’s watercolour book.