Literalley (Literally, a Library in an Alley)

Client: Greater London Authority
Site: London, UK (2016)
Designer: Wayward
Partners: Whitechapel Gallery, Providence Row

Literalley (Literally, a Library in an Alley) brings together unlikely neighbours to brighten and green the underutilised and challenging passage of Angel Alley, while supporting the local exchange of stories, ideas and books.

The alley is shared by Whitechapel Gallery, the homeless charity Providence Row, and the anarchist bookstore, Freedom Books. Supported by the GLA’s Mayor’s High Street Fund, Wayward brought together these organisations along with fifteen other local businesses and community groups along the High Street to create seating, planters and a digital library within the alley. Wayward developed workshops with the homeless clients and volunteers to build concrete planters cast from a library of books. Embedded in the project is a digital library of interviews, stories and exchanges that can only be accessed while occupying the alley. Whitechapel Gallery hosted two local knowledge exchanges with Wayward on libraries and urban growing to further the exchange and activate the space. The planters are cared for through Providence Row’s award-winning gardening initiative.

Participants include: Aldgate Coffee House, Artsadmin & Toynbee Studios (Arts Organisation), E1 Cycles, Exmouth Coffee, Fashion Warehouse, Freedom Press (Bookstore and Press), The Idea Store (Library), London Met Uni: The John Cass Faculty, Oi Hanoi, On Purpose (Leadership Organisation), Print Britannia (Local Printer), Providence Row (Homeless Charity), Sid’s DIY (DIY Shop), Straits Times Kopitiam Coffee Shop, Studio Mag (Hair Salon), Whitechapel Gallery (Museum).

Literalley (Literally, a Library in an Alley)

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Client: Greater London Authority
Site: London, UK (2016)
Designer: Wayward
Partners: Whitechapel Gallery, Providence Row

Literalley (Literally, a Library in an Alley) brings together unlikely neighbours to brighten and green the underutilised and challenging passage of Angel Alley, while supporting the local exchange of stories, ideas and books.

The alley is shared by Whitechapel Gallery, the homeless charity Providence Row, and the anarchist bookstore, Freedom Books. Supported by the GLA’s Mayor’s High Street Fund, Wayward brought together these organisations along with fifteen other local businesses and community groups along the High Street to create seating, planters and a digital library within the alley. Wayward developed workshops with the homeless clients and volunteers to build concrete planters cast from a library of books. Embedded in the project is a digital library of interviews, stories and exchanges that can only be accessed while occupying the alley. Whitechapel Gallery hosted two local knowledge exchanges with Wayward on libraries and urban growing to further the exchange and activate the space. The planters are cared for through Providence Row’s award-winning gardening initiative.

Participants include: Aldgate Coffee House, Artsadmin & Toynbee Studios (Arts Organisation), E1 Cycles, Exmouth Coffee, Fashion Warehouse, Freedom Press (Bookstore and Press), The Idea Store (Library), London Met Uni: The John Cass Faculty, Oi Hanoi, On Purpose (Leadership Organisation), Print Britannia (Local Printer), Providence Row (Homeless Charity), Sid’s DIY (DIY Shop), Straits Times Kopitiam Coffee Shop, Studio Mag (Hair Salon), Whitechapel Gallery (Museum).