Open daily 2 ?10pm, 15 July – 6 August 2009, Admission Free
Dalston Junction, entrance by the Peace Mural on Dalston Lane, Hackney E8
For three weeks this summer, Barbican Art Gallery is breaking out of the walls of the city and taking art into Hackney. As part of the Barbican’s major new exhibition Radical Nature: Art and Architecture for a Changing Planet, and to coincide with CREATE09, the experimental architectural collective EXYZT has created a ground-breaking satellite project, The Dalston Mill. Featuring a 16 metre-high windmill with bread oven, a 20 metre-long Wheatfield and accompanied by a full programme of special performances, activities and summer feasts, The Dalston Mill opens to the public on Wednesday 15 July.
EXYZT have been working closely with local communities in Hackney to turn a disused site in Dalston into a functioning windmill with which to produce low-voltage electricity and to create flour and bake bread. With a resident baker and a weekend bar, there is also a vibrant programme of events. Highlights include performances by Arcola Youth Theatre; Urban Psychoanalyst Laurence Petit gathering thoughts and opinions about Dalston; a cake decorating workshop by Jagdish Patel from Ridley Road’s Party Party of; a feral trade tea service with local artist Kate Rich; pedal powered music with Magnificent Revolution and a bread-making workshop with Somerford Grove Youth Group. For the latest event information visit www.barbican.org.uk/radicalnature
The Dalston Mill site also features a restaging of pioneering environmental artist Agnes Denes’ iconic work Wheatfield – A Confrontation, 1982, where she planted and harvested two acres of wheat in Battery Park landfill in downtown New York. An act of transplanting rural nature into the heart of an otherwise extremely dense urban environment, this famous work was also EXYZT’s inspiration for The Dalston Mill.
The Dalston Mill is the first windmill created by EXYZT, specifically designed for the site on Dalston Lane. The vertical axle windmill is estimated to turn about 60 tours per minute when the wind is 1metre per second. The “wheel” of the mill is at 16 metres above ground to catch the wind from above the surrounding buildings. The rotation is transmitted through a vertical axle down to the Bar where it is multiplied to at least 1500 tours per minute to charge a car battery which will supply power for the LED lighting system. The rotations will also grind wheat in a grinding machine that will turn with the windmill.
EXYZT at The Dalston Mill Video:(Vimeo)