Every year it’s a bit will they/won’t they, but Hackney WickED is strapped in and ready to commit with a ‘Summer of Love’-themed weekender of open studios, film screenings, workshops and debauched arty parties. The whole festival emerges from the energy of local artists and, given that they’re constantly under threat of being turfed out to make way for posh new-builds, it’s incredible that Hackney WickED is still going. But it is, and this year the mustachioed festival pied-piper Gavin Turk will launch the whole thing at his new studio in Here East, the former Olympic Park press centre (he had to leave his old Wick Lane Road space to make way for, yep, more flats. See, it even happens to the YBAs). It’s not all in the house of Turk though: WickED is scattered across the warehouses, galleries and cafes of E5, so slip on some broken-in Doc Martens and start exploring those yards.
Hackney WickED director Anna Maloney and Gavin Turk and have let 60 of the area’s artists loose in Turk’s studio at Here East for a massive group show. Works will clash in visuals and style, but the general theme surrounds the emotion, trauma and uncertainty of a creative life in London. It’s a private view tonight, but you can visit on Saturday and Sunday, 12-6pm. Here East. Homerton Overground. Free entry, register for Hackney WickED DIY Open Studios in advance.
The Leftovers Collective are taking over the White Post Cafe’s atrium to create an ethereal space filled with live music from a mystery 1971 film played by Joel Smith. Hide among the sofas, cushions and in the solace of a bar that’s open until 1am. White Post Café. Hackney Wick Overground. Sun Jul 30, 11pm-1am. Free.
Grow restaurant is one of the core venues for Hackney WickED, so it’s going to be buzzing with DJ sets, last-minute performances and live music from tonight until Monday morning. It’s also playing host to tonight’s official festival launch after-party, which has closed for pre-registration, but you can still take your chances on the door for a fiver. Grow. Hackney Wick Overground. Fri Jul 28-Sun Jul 30.
Prince Edward Road will be lined with street traders this Saturday between 10am-4pm. Pick up magazines, photobooks, handmade jewellery, an original piece of art or a salt-beef bagel. Prince Edward Rd. Sat Jul 29, 10am-4pm. Free.
See work by emerging LGBT+ photographers like Graham Martin, Carl Doghouse and Simon Webb. They’ll also be running skill-sharing sessions and workshops throughout the show’s run if you want to get snap happy. 117 Wallis Rd. Hackney Wick Overground. Free.
Want to see more? Read the full Hackney WickED programme.
Can't make it? See one of London’s latest art exhibitions instead.