Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities Exhibition

The Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities 

Avant-Gardening exhibition/residency at Greenwich Heritage Centre

Tuesday 4 December 2012 - Friday 11 January 2013
Open Tuesday - Saturday 9am - 5pm(Closed 25 Dec, 26 Dec and 1 Jan)

How do you view the area where you live?

How do you respond to the history or of the area; its stories and anecdotes?

Have you got a tale to tell?

Artists’ collective Avant-Gardening has been out and about in the Royal Borough of Greenwich; talking to residents and visitors about their responses to the area for collation into a new mobile archive, the Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities,  which is one of the centrepieces of an interactive exhibition/residency at the Greenwich Heritage Centre in Woolwich. 

Designed and built by designer Bahbak Hashemi-Nezhad the Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities along with Greenwich Garden by designer/maker, Hilary Blackburn, will be focal points of an exhibition and programme of creative workshops and interactions which will add to the growing collection of materials being curated into the cabinet.


We will be showcasing a selection of work contributed by participants in various workshops around the borough and also encouraging visitors to add their own voices during our exhibition workshops which will see the contents of the cabinet expanded out into the gallery space to create a living archive that represents the personal responses of the community

During the residency at Greenwich Heritage Centre we will be curating a smaller version of the exhibition which will be on display at the Discover Greenwich Information Centre at the Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich during February 2013.

Workshops and activities will be programmed throughout the residency and to keep track of all activities you can download the Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities app which will be live for the duration of the exhibition and give you regular updates on the activities and the work created by participants during the residency

The app is downloadable for Android from Google Apps>

An iOS app is available to download for iPhones by visiting this link:

Workshops scheduled to date include:
Cabinet of Curiosities Fanzine workshop                                                                                                       Help the Avant-Gardeners to create one of the Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities fanzines that will be produced and digitally distributed weekly throughout the exhibition. 

Tuesday 4th December 11am – 3pm

Wednesday 5th December 2pm - 5pm

Friday 7th December 2pm - 5pm

Thursday 13 December 10am - 1pm

Friday 4 January 10am - 1pm

Thursday 10 Jan 10am - 1pm


Winter lantern workshop                                                                                                                                    Join us making Greenwich related lanterns to light up the long winter nights. The lanterns will be part of the exhibition until 21st Dec when participants will be invited to join us to light up the longest night and take their lanterns home for the festive season

Wednesday 12th December 2pm - 5pm

Friday 21 December 2pm - 5pm

Download the app or visit our blog for details of more workshops as they are confirmed

The Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities is supported by the National Lottery, through Arts Council England

Topics: [art] [exhibition] [Greenwich] [Woolwich]

The Place Where Plums Grow

The first stages of our project, The Place Where Plums Grow, which aims to bring a selection of fruiting trees back to the Woolwich Common and Plumstead Common areas of south London is featured in this weeks edition of Royal Greenwich Time

In the coming months we are looking for more community groups, businesses or schools that may be interested in being involved when we roll the project out in the autumn. We are shortly going to be inviting local business to sponsor a tree and get involved with their local community by supporting the planting of trees and the development of a rich community education programme that will look at the history and folklore of orchards. We will also be developing an education strand looking at the role of trees in supporting bio-diversity, caring for your orchard and collecting delicious recipes to enjoy the fruits of the community's work 

More information about The Place Where Plums Grow can be found on the project page



Topics: [community engagement] [food] [Greenwich] [orchard] [urban farmers] [Woolwich]

Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities Workshops

Time to take another look at the Royal Borough of Greenwich! We are running a programme of workshops across Greenwich to explore the local area to create materials for the Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities. The workshops will be informal explorations of the borough where participants can join in mapping the borough, creating pages for the first of our fanzines celebrating the borough, have their tales recorded or just share a story or anecdote about the area. We would also love to see any photographs that people may have of the area or other artefacts that we could document for inclusion in the Greenwich Cabinet of Curiosities and the exhibition at the end of the year. All workshops are free and open to all

Greenwich Heritage Centre, Woolwich - Thursday 5 April 1pm - 4pm

Charlton House Cafe - Thursday  12th April 3pm - 5pm

West Greenwich Library Sat 14th April 1pm - 3pm

Greenwich Heritage Centre, Woolwich - Saturday 21 April 1pm - 4pm

Plumstead Library - Friday 27th April 3pm - 5pm

West Greenwich Library (as part of Adult Learners Week) - Thursday 17 May 3.45pm - 5pm

Topics: [Charlton] [fanzines] [Greenwich] [mapping] [Plumstead] [psycho-geography] [Woolwich] [workshops]

Nightingale Nature TV

Dr Rosie Apple in the garden
Dr Rosie Apple in the garden

This short film made over a couple of afternoons in late summer captures some of the fun the young people of Nightingale Estate in Woolwich had creating activities in the community garden

Topics: [children and young people] [community engagement] [community garden] [Woolwich]

Nightingale TV

Have you seen bats on Woolwich Common?

Do you want to share a story of your gardening successes?

This summer the residents of Woolwich's Nightingale Estate will become news reporters and journalists as they investigate the urban nature in their area. From bird-spotting to urban growing the intrepid reporters will be reporting on the latest trends in urban gardening. The project will be launched at Welcare, Nightingale Vale, SE18 on Wednesday 10 Aug at 1pm and is open to all children and young people that live on the estate.  Come along and sign-up to be part of the news team.

We are also looking for people of any age who have a story to tell! You could make Nature News headlines and be visited by our Mobile News Desk who will interview you about your gardening tips or nature news. If you have a story to tell contact and we will arrange a time for you to be interviewed.


Topics: [film and video] [Nightingale Estate] [urban gardening] [Woolwich]

artwork by polly brannan
website by the useful arts organisation