On the agenda: Tower Bridge; Dorset Seafood Festival; Keep Me Posted; The Railway Children; Robert Irwin's Camel; Carven
A love letter to... well, letters; plus all you ever wanted to know about camels
Sunday 04 July 2010
Picture that meandering loop of the River Thames from the EastEnders title sequence and you've seen but a fraction of England's longest river. The 215-mile water course, which rises in Gloucestershire and flows through Reading, Oxford and Windsor before it hits London, is now the subject of an eye-catching exhibition at, suitably, Tower Bridge. Thirty large-scale photos charting its epic path are on display, from shots of a placid infant river winding its way through a verdant-green countryside, to a misty panorama of swimmers powering past Henley. To 30 September, towerbridge.org.uk
If you're partial to paella or salivate at the thought of a crab cake, don't miss this year's Dorset Seafood Festival. Fifty stalls will groan with dishes from stuffed squid skewers to a bouillabaisse packed with 20 varieties of fish (Flood's Bistro, tel: 01305 772 270). What's more, the Independent's Mark Hix, River Cottage forager John Wright and former Ritz head chef Giles Thompson will be on hand for live cooking demonstrations. dorsetseafood.co.uk
When Facebook's COO declares that the end of email is nigh, you know the world of communications has drastically altered from those heady days when a Penny Black was actually worth a penny. So the new exhibition Keep Me Posted, at east London pop-up space Posted, is a poignant love letter to a dying art, with the likes of Tracey Emin (who made her name writing letters to White Cube gallerist Jay Jopling), sculptor Andreas Blank and abstract artist Rachel Howard creating pieces that celebrate letter-writing, from customised stationery sets to a stone-carved parcel that Royal Mail would have a hard time delivering. To 26 September, postedprojects.co.uk
Where better to watch the latest adaptation of Edith Nesbit's tale of 'The Railway Children' than a disused railway station (above)? Mike Kenny's production, first staged in Kent in 2008, will sit the audience either side of the tracks at the former Eurostar terminal at Waterloo, while props from the 1970 film add to the authenticity. It should make for a truly transporting event. To 4 September, railwaychildrenwaterloo.co.uk
The subject of one of the most oddly fascinating events at last year's Dubai Festival of Literature, Robert Irwin's 'Camel' is this year's surprise must-read even on this unsandy island. A wry history of a mainstay of Arabic civilisation, it examines the animal's cultural, financial and linguistic contribution to the world as we know it. Who knew that several countries hold beauty pageants for camels, for instance, or that parts of Australia are besieged by feral dromedaries? £9.99, Reaktion Books
The hot label on everyone's lips right now: Carven. What do you mean, you haven't heard of it? Madame Carmen de Tommaso founded her couture house for petite women (she stood at just 5ft 1in) in 1945, during the golden age of Parisian dress-making. Now, with Guillaume Henry (formerly of Givenchy) at its head, the label is making a splash once more, and is available to people of all heights – though you might have to stand on your wallet to reach the price tags. Minimal leather handbags and cropped leather jackets; geometric-cut silk dresses – it's the new last word in stealth wealth chic. Available at net-a-porter.com.
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