Hackney Wick, The surprising artistic district of London …
Hackney Wick is a London district, which is at the heart of the news from its very important community of artists and its rehabilitation following the highly-criticized 2012 Olympic Games.
In the east of London, in the « London Borough of Hackney », there is Hackney Wick, one of London’s regions, which was resurrected by the 2012 Olympics. But unlike these other neighborhoods, Hackney Wick has another success factor; The artistic community of London.
What is the problem with the Hackney Wick gentrification ?
Forced to leave the former industrial and warehousing areas south of the Hackney borough, by adding the increase in rents, artists turned to more affordable industrial buildings such as Hackney Wick’s.
In 2012 London hosted the Olympic Games, and the London Olympic Stadium was built just next to Hackney wick, which has regenerated the district, several good things happens due to that but on another side, the gentrification caused a big culture change in the home of the highest concentration of artists in Europe. A report from London assembly said than in the next 2 years, 3500 artists will lose their place of work because of gentrification. The mayor said than that place had to be rehabilitated, but they still try to keep the artists because they are « the soul » of Hackney Wick. Some buildings are therefore created to become the new artists locals. It could be the answer to keep the artistic spirit in this part of town. Art make a lot of money because it attracts a lot of tourists who come to enjoy this atypical culture. It’s about 3 billion pounds into the UK economy. Hackney Wick has become a real challenge because the area is a victim of its own success.
Learn more about the rehabilitation here.
Hackney Wick inhabitants testimonials and protests here.
What happened in Hackney Wick ?
Several events have taken place, such as Hackney Wick’s first arts festival, Hackney Wicked, from 8 to 10 August 2008. But also: The elevator gallery, the Schwartz gallery, « the Peanut Factory » … . Then came the second « Hackney Wicked » arts festival in 2009, and many more until today. Nowadays, Hackney Wick still houses a large number of professional creatives, artists and musicians. Attracted in part by the inexpensive spaces that became available with the decline of its industrial past, more than 600 individual artist studios existed in 2013. With notable artists such as Banksy, Paul Noble, Sweet Toof, « Fantich and Young » , and many others… . After the 2012 Olympic Games, Hackney Wick saw the gentrification rise due to the opening of new residential sites in the Olympic venue, but also specifically a long established artistic culture that has now become the signature of the district.