Cornford and Cross - Words Are Not Enough
Peace garden over nuclear bunker, and public address on art and urban regeneration

In a vacant plot of land, a shaft drops down to a concrete stairway leading into deep shadows.  A corridor gives onto a network of flooded chambers echoing with the sound of dripping water.  Power generators, an air filtration system, communications equipment, maps, charts and plans are still in place, but obsolete, decaying, and forgotten in total darkness.

Built in 1953 to accommodate council staff in the event of a nuclear attack, the underground shelter is a relic of the Cold War era.  Today, as an astonishing economic regeneration gathers pace in Southwark, the land stands ripe for development in this most dynamic and promising area of the Capital.

Cornford and Cross will plant an abundant display of flowers and shrubs over the entrance to the bunker, and throw a summer party.  By creating a glimpse of a greener Southwark, the aim of this ‘peace garden’ is to re-connect world history with personal memories, invite reflection on the idea of closure, and celebrate the widest range of possibilities now open to Londoners.

They also plan an open public address with a prominent international speaker.  The audience will be invited to consider how contemporary society relates to the time when the world lived in the shadow of a nuclear holocaust, and to discuss plans for regeneration and hopes for the future.

Cornford & Cross

Matthew Cornford and David Cross have worked together since meeting at St Martins School of Art in 1987. Since that time they have created a unique body of work made both in the public realm and for galleries. In the main, their way of working has been to respond artistically to a particular context or situation while examining the problems that arise out of it.

Camberwell Arts Festival  Sat 16 - Sun 24 Jun 2007

Camberwell Arts Festival is a celebration of the thriving cultural scene in SE5 and its surrounding area. This annual festival has become a regular and popular feature in South London and once again this week long event will give emerging and established artists a platform to perform and show their work within the vibrant community of Camberwell. The Festival is a partnership between local artist and arts organisations and initiated by Camberwell Arts, Camberwell College of Arts and South London Gallery.

Part of Architecture Week and Camberwell Arts Festival.

Supported by Camberwell College of Arts, University of the Arts London, and the University of Wolverhampton.