Your Weekend Agenda: 24-26 November
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Take a deep breath. You ready? It's officially the Christmas season. London is farting out a bunch of polymer snow filled pop ups and people are literally bathing in mulled wine and the blood of reindeer. But we love it, oh how we love it. Yeah, smack us upside down with a Christmas ham and let's get this party started.
#1 Enter a surreal dystopia
Paint and canvases are so analogue. Seems like every up-and-coming artist these days has gone full digital, and they all seem to be intensely occupied by a surreal, dystopian, post-human future landscape. Olga Mikh Fedorova is the latest to throw her eerie, computer-generated visions onto the pile - go see for yourself at her solo show at the small Annka Kultys Gallery.
#2 Celebrate female filmmakers
We all know the film industry's been a man's game forever. But the tides of change are rumbling, pervy films execs are getting called on their shit, and moves are being made towards better representation on screen. This is all thanks to the ladies behind the camera, and this festival celebrates them - the cinematic renegades smashing patriarchal structures in the name of art.
#3 Spend a night in paradise
Paradise Garage was NYC's mecca of hedonism - the most iconic club of the 80s, playing everything in the realms of disco, boogie, funk and anything masterful resident Larry Levan had in his stacks. The good folk at Boiler Room have unearthed some never-before-seen footage from the club's legendary closing night, and they're putting on a free, weekend-long A/V installation to show everyone. Get involved.
#4 Get inside the mind
Historically, we've been pretty shitty to the mentally ill. Back in Victorian times, people used to pay an entrance fee to see 'the crazies' at this former mental hospital, like some kind of fucked up sideshow. That's pretty bleak, but things are different now - it's been converted to a small museum dedicated to de-stigmatising mental health. A pretty worthy cause, if you ask us - but head there quickly, 'cause it's only open on the first and last Saturday of the month.
#5 Kick off Christmas season
Christmas! Santa Claus. Mulled wine. Lights. Choirs! Nouns. Adjectives. Southbank Centre! Big! Big festival! Much cheer. Many merry.
#6 Lap up Japanese tapas
Tapas hasn't quite made it over to Japan yet, but the people at Aun pay no mind to that. They're tapas-ing all over Japanese cuisine, and the results are pretty damn delicious. You've got your nigiri rolls filled with stilton, your iberico pork rolled in panko crumbs, your oysters on crispy nori crackers - you know, all the staples. Wash it all down with an Asahi and you're living, friend.
#7 Interrogate masculinity
It's time to really look at toxic masculinity in the face, stare it right down, ask it why it thinks it's cool to pull out its dick or touch someone without consent or use its power with abusive intent. Southbank Centre is taking us all there with Being a Man Festival, a two-day series of talks on what being a man means in this fucked up political climate, and how we can re-define its more nefarious features.
#8 Go for a festive ramble
No one does Christmas quite like Kew Gardens. At night, the world-famous botanical garden turns into a lit-up wonderland primed for festive strolls - a mile-long visual feast, complete with tree canopies dripping with Christmas colours, illuminated fountains, and more treats for your peepers. Grab a mulled wine, grab a love interest, and live out your holiday fantasies here.
#9 Make the yuletide gay
What is Sink the Pink? They're only London's most influential genderfuck army. What is a genderfuck army? You're exhausting us. Basically, these guys queer the norm, rip up the rules, take gender and drown it in a vat of sparkles and unicorn dust, then resurrect it and wear it as a pube wig. Confused? Don't be, hunny, just bop along to their special Christmas panto at Selfridges and you'll see what we mean.