15 of the best things to do in London this weekend from VegFestUK at Olympia to a pop-up bar where the sun always shines in Shoreditch and a doggy dream house in Belgravia
Lead image: Sebastian Chaumeton presents his debut solo exhibition, Fuzzy Futures, st Maddox Gallery
1 VegFestUK at Olympia
VegFestUK – the UK’s biggest vegan festival – returns to Olympia for the seventh consecutive year this weekend. Since 2003, when it was founded in Bristol, VegFestUK has played a vital role in the rise of all things vegan. A new feature for this year’s event – which will feature some 320 exhibitors, 25 featured areas and 200 speakers, as well as new vegan brands and special offers – is the Natural Therapy Zone, with a focus on health, wellbeing, eco-friendly products, yoga classes, expert presentations and more. You’ll also find the Vegan Food Village, talks on Fitness, the Foodies Stage, Cookery Demos, Kids Storytelling, the Mature Zone, the Art of Compassion Project Exhibition, the VGN Climate Change Summit, Radical Veganism, the Animal Rebellion summit, talks on Animal Rights & Activism, and a variety of keynote speeches. There will also be veggie and vegan speed dating sessions with veggievisiondating.com! Day tickets from £13.20, weekend tickets £22 (kids under 16 go free with a paying adult).
Hammersmith Road W14 8UX; london.vegfest.co.uk
2 Lily’s Kitchen House of Treats, Belgravia
Our furry friends are more than just pets – they’re an intrinsic part of our families – which is why we let them get away with all sorts, such as chewing our favourite shoe and sleeping in the middle of the bed. This weekend, why not take your pup to a place where stealing socks from the laundry and leaping into a pile of freshly raked leaves is not only allowed, but applauded? Lily’s Kitchen, the maker of proper food for pets, is hosting a House of Treats in Belgravia this weekend, where dogs can journey through specially themed spaces designed to bring them joy and happiness. There’s the Petflix & Chill zone, where four-legged friends can relax on the sofa, watch canine-friendly films and chomp away on their favourite telly treats; a specially-created laundry room featuring socks galore ready for the taking; the Tummy Time mini dog spa with pooch pampering by an expert dog masseuse; the Bubble Bath with bubbles and balls for dogs to dive right into; and Bark in the Park, where dogs can enjoy an autumn wonderland equipped with a wheelbarrow full of Proper Treats! Plus, every house guest will get to take home Lily’s Kitchen Proper Treats. Open 10am-6pm. Free. A limited number of 30-minute bookings will be available on each day and walk-ins are welcome subject to availability.
30 Elizabeth Street, Belgravia SW1W 9RB. To book see eventbrite.co.uk
3 Deptford X, across Deptford
25 October-3 November
Deptford X, London’s longest running contemporary visual arts festival, celebrates its 21st birthday this year with its largest programme to date. This year’s theme is Stop Making Sense, taken from the Talking Heads’ 1984 concert film of the same name, chosen to reflect surreal, playful and unruly art as a disruption to our current political climate of hostility and division. New director Nathalie Boobis has curated 12 major projects, five of which have been specially commissioned following an open call aimed at BAME applicants, with almost 100 fringe events drawn from the local community. Highlights include a film by Sarah Browne, who co-represented Ireland at the 53rd Venice Biennial, a new sculptural installation by Kobby Adi, whose work explores cultural objects associated with Blackness, a major immersive work by American artist Gray Wielebinski that uses sports as an entry point for exploring themes of national identity, desire, myth making, surveillance, hierarchies, race and gender, and a festival procession invoking worldwide carnival traditions on the final day.
4 Raw + Natural at Canopy Market, King’s Cross
Raw + Natural at Canopy Market is a free cheese and wine event with a difference. Eat, drink and buy rare and small-scale cheeses and wines from a line-up of the best British raw milk cheeses at this special event, hosted in collaboration with Neal’s Yard Dairy. Under the restored Victorian glass and steel roof, Neal’s Yard Dairy are bringing together an amazing range of small scale, farmhouse cheese producers from the UK, often made from the milk of single herds of cows, sheep or goats. Cheese aficionados will be able to meet the producers and buy direct, with cheeses including world-famous Montgomery cheddar made in Somerset, Berkswell, Innes Log, Lincolnshire Poacher and Stichelton, the crumbly ‘real Stilton’ blue cheese made to a traditional recipe on the Welbeck Estate in Nottingham. You’ll also be able to get involved in tastings and demonstrations, including a live cheese-making session hosted by Neal’s Yard Dairy, and sample low-intervention, natural wines from across Europe. For beer drinkers there will be London’s best craft beers on tap at the Hop Counter, alongside Canopy Market’s carefully selected artisan food and drink traders.
West Handyside Canopy, King’s Cross N1C; kingscross.co.uk
5 Sol Bar, Shoreditch
Dark nights suck. But Sol is offering Londoners a little more light in their lives with the Sol Bar – the first bar where the sun never sets. With the clocks going back on Sunday 27 October, Sol carried out a survey that revealed 64% of people estimate they get less than an hour a day of sunlight in the winter. To fix this, the Shoreditch pop-up will offer us the chance to reconnect with the positive energy of the sun through special sun lamps that give the optimal amount of sunlight in a day, stimulating the release of the ‘happiness chemical’, serotonin. You’ll also be able to bask in the scents, sounds and warm breeze of the summer air. The sun has always been integral to Sol’s Mexican heritage since launch in 1899, when the original master brewer, upon seeing a ray of sunlight hit the beer, crowned it ‘El Sol’, which later became ‘Sol’. Entry to the bar is free and each guest will receive two complimentary drinks – choose either a Sol or a refreshing Sol Chelada cocktail. Open Thursday & Friday from 5pm-10pm & Saturday from 4pm-9pm.
Protein Studios, 31 New Inn Yard, Hackney EC2A 3EY
6 Godless Goddesses at Trinity Art Gallery, City Island
Until 27 October
Godless Goddesses, the largest solo exhibition to date by Triana Terry at Trinity Art Gallery, introduces a new body of vibrant works examining contemporary portrayals of female inner strength. The exhibition is a tribute to all of those women who, at some stage of their life, have felt trapped by a particular situation, inviting the viewer to ‘reflect’ while facing the stories of those incredible women who managed to cope. Coming from an artistic family background, Terry is a self-taught painter who is predominantly inspired by human behaviour, faces and emotions. She has had many high profile subjects including the likes of Stephen Fry, David Thewlis and Anna Friel, and has exhibited at a variety of locations including the Saatchi Gallery, the Groucho club and Soho House. In addition to painting, Terry is also a much sought-after actress and performer.
Unit 22, Hope Street, London City Island E14 0LG; godlessgoddesses.com
7 The Dulwich Players: The Rover by Aphra Behn at Edward Alleyn Theatre, Dulwich
King Charles II is in exile, and his supporters have fled Puritan England for sunnier, more entertaining climes. As the lads exhibit some 17th century ‘Brits Abroad’ behaviour, Hellena, ‘a gay young woman designed for a nun’, is convincing her sisters and cousins that they too should take the opportunity to disguise themselves in masquerade and explore the world of sex and romance. Love and lust, wealth and wit all intermingle in a libertine world tinged with danger as noblewomen Hellena and Florinda escape the confines of the lives set out for them since birth to experience the freedom of the streets. But with freedom comes risk, and male attitudes towards women can lead to anything from a passionate kiss to terrible abuse. Written by England’s first female playwright ‘forced to write for bread and not be ashamed to own it’, Aphra Behn’s most successful play continues to hold a mirror up to our society today, 350 years after it first took to the stage. Ages 14+. Tickets £12. 8pm.
Edward Alleyn Theatre, Dulwich College SE21 7LD; Box Office 07936 531 356; dulwichplayers.org
8 MADE LONDON, Marylebone
MADE LONDON, one of the top selling events for designer-makers in Europe, returns to One Marylebone this month to showcase the best and most original contemporary craft and design. Discover a range of work from makers across all media, including ceramics, glass, wood, precious metals and textiles, from 120 established and emerging designers. Look out for complex, eye-catching contemporary jewellery from Dominika Kupcova Jewellery, contemporary ceramics by Francesca Kaye Ceramics, and some very colourful, playful footwear by Jackie Loves Clogs, whose great grandfather was a traditional clog maker in Cumbria. Open 10.30am-5pm. Tickets £10.
1 Marylebone Road NW1 4AQ; madelondon-marylebone.co.uk
9 Fuzzy Futures by Sebastian Chaumeton at Maddox Gallery, Mayfair
18 October-5 November
Maddox gallery in Mayfair presents Fuzzy Futures, the debut solo exhibition by Sebastian Chaumeton, a recent graduate from the Chelsea College of Art. With a nostalgia for the past and an eye to the future,?Chaumeton’s work is a representation of his generation. Blurring the boundaries of identity in a painterly fashion, his canvas paintings give order to the overload of information that permeates our screens on a daily basis. ?Attempting to make sense of the world we live in, each of Chaumeton’s paintings provide commentary on an amalgamation of ideas ranging from meme culture to politics and art history, and data misuse to materialism. Fuzzy Futures is a double entendre on the texture of Chaumeton’s work; from the inclusion of muppet and puppet characters to the fuzziness of a partially downloaded photo, the surficial elements of his paintings are designed to slow down the viewing process.
8 Shepherd Street, Mayfair W1J 7JE; maddoxgallery.com
10 Focus Africa at Pop Brixton
As part of Black History Month, Pop Brixton is hosting a free all-day party to top an impressive month of events at Pop. The headline event is an album launch by renowned Senegalese Kora player and singer Noumoucounda Cissoko, whose lyrics speak of development and progress but also touch upon education and African women’s rights. His sound bears the trappings of the modern world and of hip-hop, while ringing with the strength, maturity and depth of centuries of Mandinka tradition. Also performing at Focus Africa are a number of DJs playing the best Afrobeats, Kuduro, Soukous and Azonto, including DJ Snuff and Djsoulprovyder. There’ll also be a free drum and dance workshop in the afternoon with renowned teacher Aida Diop (to reserve a spot email email@example.com). On Sunday, there’s also LADT Fest (3pm-11pm), a free all-day party featuring 10 leading female bands & DJs.
49 Brixton Station Road, Brixton SW9 8PQ; popbrixton.org
11 Chihuly Nights at Kew Gardens
Until 26 October
Experience Dale Chihuly’s breath-taking glass artworks illuminated under the evening sky as the sun sets across Kew Gardens. Enjoy beautiful music commissioned by Guest Artists and based on a composition by acclaimed composer Nico Muhly, featuring instruments and vocals to reflect Chihuly’s use of glass and breath. The soundscape will change each evening and will include a rotating line up of musicians, including the UK’s only glass harmonica player Alasdair Malloy. Food and drink will be available from the Pavilion Bar and Grill. Running every Thursday, Friday and Saturday from 7.30pm-10.30pm (last entry to Gardens at 9pm). Tickets £18 (members £12).
Victoria Gate entrance, Kew Gardens, Richmond TW9 3AE; kew.org
12 Femme Fatale at Omnibus Theatre, Clapham
Until 27 October
Clapham Omnibus’ 5th annual Perception Festival takes on the theme of Nasty Women, featuring a rich and riotous all-female mix of uncompromising theatre-makers investigating our perceived notions of femininity and womanhood. Our pick of the bunch is Femme Fatale (8-27 October), where Nico, singer with The Velvet Underground and Andy Warhol’s Superstar, waits to shoot his latest movie when her Chelsea Hotel room is invaded by radical feminist Valerie Solanas who wants the celebrity’s help to spread her message of female revolution, but Nico only craves drugs to insulate her from her pain, and a darkly comic battle begins.
1 Northside, Clapham Common SW4 0QW; omnibus-clapham.org
13 HarvestFest at Skylight, Wapping
Until 27 October
London’s most imaginative rooftop destination, Skylight at Tobacco Dock in Wapping, has launched HarvestFest, its all-new autumn season. A celebration of the russet tones and mellow fruitfulness of autumn, HarvestFest will help Londoners transition into the colder months with a whole host of seasonal additions, events and surprises that define this beautiful season. The diverse cocktail menu will celebrate harvest ingredients, such as apples, blackberries and pears, complemented by warming autumnal spices, as well as mulled wine, and the summer staples of croquet and pétanque will be replaced with an array of new seasonal games including Horseshoes, Apple-Draughts and Hay Bale Skittles. Street food stalls on the lower level will be continuing to serve up both day-time food and brunch, including the exciting new addition of bottomless Prosecco surrounded by heated booths. Skylight is also be showing the Rugby World Cup (tickets are available now and brunch is available from 11am on game days).
Pennington Street Car Park Entrance, Wapping E1W 2SF; skylightlondon.com
14 Aladdin and The Feast of Wonders at The Vaults, Waterloo
Until 14 January
Christmas seems to come around earlier every year, and this year is no exception, with the launch of London’s first pantomime of the season – Aladdin and The Feast of Wonders. Following the sell-out success of Beauty and The Feast, Darling & Edge, the immersive events studio based in Hello Darling, has whipped up another thrilling theatrical adult pantomime, inspired by Aladdin and the Genie. Aladdin and The Feast of Wonders is an underground theatrical dining experience, a fully immersive, grown-up panto that rolls a five-course gastro banquet and party into one hedonistic night – it’s a wine-and-dine pantomime that turns the classic tale on its head. Tickets from £35 (Early Bird) to £55.
The Vaults, Leake Street, Waterloo SE1 7NN; thevaults.london
15 It’s Only Rock N Roll But I Like It! at Galerie Prints, Wimbledon
Until 20 November
A major new exhibition from GALERIE PRINTS in Wimbledon features gorgeously candid shots of the best known faces of Rock & Pop, from Elvis Presley to The Rolling Stones and Blondie and Bruce Springsteen. Spanning over 50 years of music photography, the exhibition features heavyweight photographers such as as Terry O’Neill, Michael Putland, Jill Furmanovsky, Christopher Simon Sykes and Duffy. Led Zepplin, David Bowie, Amy Winehouse, Nirvana and Oasis feature in this spectacular display of iconic music imagery. Free Admission.
152 Arthur Road, Wimbledon Park SW19 8AQ; galerieprints.com
Aladdin & the Feast of Wonders is a wine-and-dine pantomime from the makers of Beauty & the Feast