The world’s biggest bouncy castle opens in Margate this summer, a trip to a ball pit is now a legitimate end to an east London night out, and there’s a crowd funding campaign to create an interactive experience from 80s kid’s show Pat Sharp’s Fun House. Blame it on those Millennials if you like, but play is big news this year, with nostalgia for less stressful times driving an enthusiasm for the games of our childhoods. For a more design-savvy take on this childish fun then the Walala X Play maze is the place to be this summer. The NOW Gallery on London’s Greenwich Peninsula is hosting an interactive exhibition from the capital’s queen of colour, Camille Walala, giving you the opportunity to literally get inside the artist’s work.
NOW Gallery has something of a reputation for being a gallery that celebrates colour, with previous exhibitions including What I Like by Molly Goddard, an installation of ethereal, pastel hued dresses trailing from ceiling to floor, and a film by Chromologist favourites Patternity. “We love having colour in our gallery space,” says curator Jemima Burrill, “it glows through the glass and resonates on Peninsula Square. Camille Walala is the queen of colour and her patterns will create another world for all in NOW Gallery. We are creating a playful place where – as is in our past exhibitions – we give people time to linger, digest and unpick puzzles giving space to let the installation resonate.”
Walala’s invitation to be the gallery’s 2017 Design Collaborator has resulted in a large-scale maze for visitors to explore. Walala Studio has created a ‘temple of wonder’ for visitors to wander through and interact with, with her trademark geometric prints in eye-popping colours mingled with mirror panels to make a space that is in itself a puzzle to explore and unravel. Originally a graduate in textile design, Camille Walala’s vibrant work has made her greatly in demand for large-scale installations and interventions in London and elsewhere, with many east London buildings decorated with her murals – most spectacularly a whole office block on the corner of Shoreditch’s Great Eastern Street. Now you have the chance to step right inside her work and enjoy its powerful, playful mix of shape and colour for yourself.
WALALA X PLAY runs until 24 September 2017 at NOW Gallery, London.