BEST WALKS IN LONDON: WALK THE LINE FROM STRATFORD
Walking in London. Thoughts of your commute spring to mind or escaping to various spots outside the city to get the steps up, rather than finding places to walk in London. But why not try one of the best walks in London? The Line is the first of its kind in London, a walk that incorporates pieces of modern and contemporary art across the city.
Starting at Stratford’s Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, The Line’s route runs through the east of London, roughly following “the line” of the Greenwich Meridian. It takes about three hours to complete the walk, running from Stratford to the Greenwich Peninsula (at the O2).
Here’s a handy guide to a few of the art pieces you can see on the current trail.
Standing at 35 metres tall, Alex Chinneck’s work refers to the industrial heritage of its location in Greenwich. Greenwich was, at one time, home to the largest oil and gas works in Europe. At night, you’ll see delicate light inflections cast on the ground. During the day, look at the shadow it casts when the sun is out.
Examining the complicated relationship between art and science, Hirst’s Sensation is a painted bronze sculpture based on a 3mm section of human skin. It was first displayed at the Tate Britain in 2004 and is now part of a private collection.
The final point in the walk, Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park’s own ArcelorMittal Orbit stands at 114.5 metres and now incorporates a viewing tower and slide. Created for the 2012 London Olympic and Paralympic Games, it defies standard structures and twists and curves upwards. One of the artists, Sir Anish Kapoor described the platform at the top “…as if you are in the lens of a telescope.”