There is still time to see Memory Palace, the acclaimed exhibition by Es Devlin OBE at Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery – but hurry because it closes to the public on Sunday 9 February.
Memory Palace is named after the classical recollection technique which catalogues memories within familiar locations – and the exhibition maps the changes in how humans have seen the world, from ancient to modern times.
Known for her work across art, theatre and music, Devlin has charted the great shifts in society, using mirrors to add to the dimensions of the 18-metre-wide sculpture – challenging viewers to reimagine their ideas of time and space.
Memory Palace takes viewers from the caves in South Africa where humans made their first drawings, all the way through to the study in Switzerland where the world wide web was conceived.
Along the way there are references to the tower in Poland, where Nicolaus Copernicus drew the first heliocentric map of the universe in 1543, to the rooms where Mary Wollstonecroft wrote A Vindication of the Rights of Women and the street in Montgomery, Alabama where Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a segregated bus in 1955.
Visitors are taken all the way to the steps of the Riksdaghuset in Stockholm where Greta Thunberg began her School Strike for Climate in 2018.
The locations and moments have been chosen by Devlin and her team to invoke our collective memories and history, provoking dialogue and debate along the way.
Councillor Julian Bell, leader of Ealing Council said: “Memory Palace is the second high-profile exhibition to be featured by Pitzhanger since it was re-opened to the public in March of this year. It has further enhanced the borough’s growing reputation as a top destination in London for art and culture.
“It’s a stunning exhibition and I encourage visitors from Ealing and further afield to make a visit and enjoy Memory Palace whilst it is still showing.
“Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery is the crown jewel of Ealing’s heritage and is the successful culmination of a careful and meticulous restoration project led by the council. It’s an outstanding piece of cultural history and first-class art gallery on our doorstep.”
Pitzhanger Manor itself is the Grade I listed home of visionary British architect Sir John Soane and the restoration has been completed with his original vision for the building in mind. Memory Palace follows the hugely successful and acclaimed exhibition from Turner Prize-winning Anish Kapoor.
Clare Gough, director of Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery added: “Es Devlin’s immense talent in fusing artistic genres would have appealed to John Soane, who highlighted the poetry of architecture and was himself a passionate collector and creator of architectural models and plaster casts.
“We hope visitors will be inspired to engage with Devlin’s own take on the transformative moments of thought and action across human history.”
It is a busy time at Pitzhanger, with a number of exciting events coming up at the Manor and Gallery in the coming weeks.
It is a busy time at Pitzhanger with exciting events coming up for all ages this February Half Term.February Half Term.
Details of Pitzhanger’s next exhibition have also been confirmed. Hogarth: London Voices, London Lives opens to the public on Wednesday 18 March.
If you are an Ealing resident, you can visit the Manor and Gallery for free all day every Tuesday and until noon on Sundays.