Urban Water Cultures Launch at CUCR on June 15th.

Please join us on June 15th, at the Laurie Grove Baths for an evening dedicated to the slippery inheritances of this historic building. This event marks the launch of Urban Water Cultures – a series of collaborative public work, organised and supported by Centre for Urban and Community Research, Goldsmiths on the urban sociology of water.

credit : Francisco Calafate-Faria

Talks by Les Back and Sophie Watson will explore the social significance of water and public baths in the city. It will also celebrate the opening of Slippages – an exhibition of site-specific installations. Alison Rooke, will be in conversation with the artists and curators of Slippages.

Location : Laurie Grove Baths, 21 Laurie Grove, London SE14 6NH

Date : Thursday June 15th


17.00 Talks and discussion:

Sophie Watson: Liquid Passions: Water Matters in Public Space

Les Back: On the Social History of the Laurie Grove Baths


18.00 Slippages exhibition view

18.30 Alison Rooke in conversation with the artists and curators of Slippages

19.30 Drinks at CUCR’s research room and Council Room upstairs

The event coincides with the opening of the Goldsmiths Fine Art degree shows, so there will be a rare opportunity to wander around the Baths. 

Slippages is an exhibition co-curated by the Feminist Methods Masterclass, convened by Nirmal Puwar. It features work by Katerina Athanasopoulou, Yani B, Ama Josephine Budge, Hari Byles, Clare Daly, Chloe Turner, and Santiago Rivas.

Over the years the Laurie Grove Baths has been used as a place for washing, swimming, dancing, playing music, wrestling, boxing, bowling, fine art, and urban research. In this exhibition we immerse ourselves in work which exposes and explores slippages; institutional, emotional, social, historic. This collection of collaborative work speaks about the slippery qualities of inheritances such as these, and the ways that humans, non-humans, materials and things have occupied, subverted and transformed them. How do we continue to do so? Exploring topics from gender, to mental health, ecologies, colonial legacies,  knowledge production, graffiti, and more, we occupy toilets, waiting rooms, and stairwells.
Les Back is professor of sociology at Goldsmiths and has researched and written extensively on race, racism, ethnicity, urban cultures, SE London, and music. He will be talking about his work on the local history of the Laurie Grove Baths.
Sophie Watson is a visiting fellow at CUCR, professor at the Open University and co-editor of the Blackwell City Reader. Her influential research on public spaces and diversity has focused on street markets and the materiality of water. She will be talking about her research in London on water as material for public space.
Alison Rooke has worked extensively with artists, local governments and community-based cultural agents on high-impact research projects. She will prompt a conversation with the authors of the installations and the audience.

Nirmal Puwar is Reader in Sociology and has been Co-director of Methods Lab for over 10 years. She convenes the MA Feminist Methods Master Workshop which has led to the installation in CUCR. Her work is on space, bodies and creative critical methods.

Contact: Francisco Calafate for more information.

Click for more details on the exhibition.



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