This was the day of the inadvertent encounter of me and a bacteria-contaminated suit-wearer in the tube from Hammersmith to Camden Town. This encounter should shorten my stay there unrequested. I can hardly say when I was last in Camden Town – it’s a long, long time ago; definitely long before it became a damn permanent funfair.
It was the Grand Union Canal and the railway transport that turned this part of the city into a bustling part of London. Camden Town is a residental area since the 18th century. It offers a mix of markets, cuisines and live music venues, this has always been the case. But how many shoe stores does the world need? I think, they are all assembled at Camden High Street, and they all catch attention with shrill advertisements. Camden High Street is spectacular and the access to shopping mania. It is only a short walk to the most famous Camden Lock Market, which is part of historic Camden Market and a favourite spot for locals and tourists. It is always crowded, but the atmosphere is great and it seems that a day in Camden Lock isn’t complete without sampling the cuisine from this market. Take a look around on the shops and stalls and when you’re fed up, turn your back on the market and the shopping mile, Camden Town has to offer more than that. You have to take the back streets which are filled with street art. You’ll meet some funky guys there, as HIMBAD, whose characters are mostly groovy cats. I have seen a van, painted with his cats on each side, and this was not the only designed van I have seen in Camden nor the last HIMBAD-cat. Facades, walls, entrances, pillars, traffic signs, everything that offers some space to paint or glue, is occupied by street art, mostly of high quality. Besides commissioned works like the facade of MTV offices and studios on Hawley Crescent, which is a living wall created by Biotecture, a designer and supplier of hydroponic living wall systems, there are lots of pieces of non commissioned works both local and international. What I specially liked is that one in the backyard of the Trinity United Reform Church at Buck Street / Kentish Town Road. It’s a street scene at a rainy day, with all those mirror effects on the surfaces. Magnificent piece. I have found out, that the artist was Dan Kitchener aka DANK. Nearby you’ll find a lot of pieces worth to be found. If you want to follow my way at this day don’t wonder. I didn’t get that far as I began to feel bad and bader in the course of the afternoon. And so I was forced to interrupt my Camden trip and make my way back to Hammersmith, followed hot on the heels by a flu, which was my closest companion for the following days.