White Hart Dock was a lonely left-over space in Lambeth, London. No one had loved it for 50 (L) years.
It fills up with water twice a day, reaching almost a metre above Black Prince Road at spring tide, held back by the steel dock gates and grey retaining walls. It has been “half empty” for half a century; unused and ignored. It was about time it was seen as “half full”, at the very least.
Lambeth Arts (London Borough of Lambeth) set in motion a new story for this derelict dock, based on historical activity on this strip of the South Bank, celebrating the original reasons for the dock itself (proximity to Royal Doulton, import and export, a threshold to the city), and focusing on contemporary eco-issues. Artists Handspring Design were selected to produce a permanent, site-specific intervention, using sustainable and durable English oak for a series of sculptures in the public realm.
After a year in the making, the artwork was launched on 17th October 2009. Please do take a look around to see how it was made, what the big ideas were, and what it looks like freshly installed.