The Nomadic Community Gardens, London’s hidden artistic oasis

It’s been a year since we last featured the ever evolving feast that is the Nomadic community gardens which as its name suggests is a community project which can be found nestling behind Brick Lane on a patch of scrubland in between two railway lines.

The resulting development of this space over the past few years has transformed a wasteland into an organic commune-esque type development with buildings made from found materials, street art, sculpture and allotments all fitting within the space which for years had been fenced off and overgrown.

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The main wall in the gardens and the centerpiece for the Meeting of Styles festival

This time last year we had a wander around and we said that the gardens just might be the coolest place to hang out in London right now.  Like a “giant den for adults” our advice was to get along to see it and now that we are well into spring, the gardens are coming into life once more and they’ve grown a lot since last year.

Now, a makeshift theatre has been added to the makeshift bars and coffee shops, there’s even a space that sometimes doubles as an art gallery.  This is an experiment in social regeneration which seems to have done good.  Left to their own devices the community have transformed what really was an unappealing area of town into a chilled out hangout where anyone is welcome.

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The gardens are a bit of a playground for street artists with works such as these from Pablo Kiran and Elno

It’s also the location for this years London edition of Meeting of Styles and it’s been the centre piece for that event for the past few years now.  The gardens boast one particularly eye-catching wall and the murals created on that have been spectacular collaborative efforts.

There’s also plenty more art to see.  Just wander around the gardens and it is everywhere and it’s not just street art, wander round and you’ll see paste ups and sculptures made out of just about anything.

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A pop up cafe built entirely from found materials

So have a look and wander around if you get a chance.  The gardens will be there until such time a more permanent development will be erected on the space.  At the moment it’s owned by Network Rail and they’ve gifted the land to be used providing there is a good community benefit in doing so, but it won’t last forever because however altruistic that is, in the East End of London these days the money of development seems to trump all.

The Nomadic Community Gardens were visited on 14 April 2017 and last featured on Inspiring City on 17 April 2016 and they’ve changed a lot since then.  The Meeting of Styles festival will take place on the weekend of 27-28 May 2017 in the gardens.

Nomadic community gardens gallery

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The sign at the entrance of the gardens by JDK

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A sculptured fist

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The birdhouse of positivity area

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Street art on the walls

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A woman made from tyres with work from Artista in the background

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Seating areas are dotted all around

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Haunting work from Elfin with some random upturned legs

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Elfin piece with other sculpture

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Street art

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Makeshift buildings on the site

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The portaloo area

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Anime eyes

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Tyres and a toilet sign

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Painted loos

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the makeshift gallery with work from This One on the front

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sneaky paste up from JDK

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JDK’s paste ups can be found dotted around the gardens

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Flying fish on a van

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Alo piece next to the recycled wood area

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Metal sculpture and art from Zadok

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The main wall

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Painted van

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The theatre with the beginnings of a telephone box

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View from inside one of the buildings

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signage for the next Meeting of Styles

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SSOSVA the Secret Society of Super Villain Artists

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A little bird made out of metal

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Amy Winehouse piece from John D’Oh

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Art at the exit

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A totem pole made out of tyres

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The archway behind the gardens

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Panorama of the gardens