Last weeks First Thursday marked the opening of ¡The New Curiosity Shop!, a new exhibition at Londonewcastle Project Space, curated by acclaimed designer Daniel Poole, CS headed down to check it out.
Making the move from the leafy quiet of Primrose Hill to a 3000sq foot space on Redchurch Street in Shoreditch, Poole will be selling installations of his own making, alongside other creatives. Neon signs by Chris Bacey, New York found objects from Merill and Jennifer Louise Martin’s figurative paintings are all included in the new East London site.
‘dp’ Daniel Poole rose to real infamy in the 90s. Having started life as a avant-garde tailor, winning a Queen’s award for his work, he then moved to street-wear. The ‘dp’ logo became synonymous with the 90s clubbing scene, but was also spotted in locations ranging from Take That videos, Tony Blair’s Political Broadcast and even Star Trek.
However, in more recent years Poole’s focus has been on his North London shop, and the new installation can be seen as a continuation of the store. Savvy London shoppers know the quirky art, design and found objects shop/gallery in Primrose Hill.
It has become a cult independent store and has established a large fan base amongst local creatives and celebrities. Ever changing art and objects share the space – from a full size, Louis Vuitton-style 1930′s double base carrier (looking like it has just fallen from the Titanic), a pair of first class American Airlines sheepskin lined airline seats, a spaceship from a 1960′s Paris fairground, the light box stage door sign from the Windmill Theatre, Meg Mathews’ custom 6 foot shiny pink fibreglass Japanese bunny, an aluminium dentists phantom skull and a collection of 500 toy robots from the 50′s and 60′s to a throbbing, flashing giant strawberry with ‘forever’ written in neon and tribal artefacts mixed with techno antiques.
In a recent interview Poole has said that The Curiosity Shop is designed to challenge the notion of what retail experience is: “It does not pander to either a niche or the mass market. It is anti‐corporate and does not follow the rules of corporatism.” I quite like the sound of that.