Wish you were here

This one-off performance references the institutional history and location of Millbank on the Thames. Currently home to Chelsea College of Art and Design, it was formerly the Royal Army Medical College, which in turn was built on the site following the demolition of Millbank penitentiary in 1890. The remaining buttress on the riverside at the site evidences the history of prisoner transportation to the Antipodes before the practice was abolished.

‘Wish you were here’ excavates wooden dowel-plugged holes in what was an exterior wall of the Medical college, and replaces them with hand-whittled replicas. The purpose of the originals is unknown, but in replacing them I hope to actively draw attention to their existence. The species of tree used for the replicas is Ailanthus altissima, or ‘Tree of Heaven’, currently considered a poisonous and an aggressive weed in several countries including Australia and New Zealand.