2020–ongoing London, UK

Constructing Belonging

This is a map of gathering spaces that the Serpentine Pavilion 2020/2021 draws on and honours; based on past and present places of meeting, organising and belonging across several London neighbourhoods significant to diasporic and cross-cultural communities. Responding to the historical erasure and scarcity of informal community spaces across the city, the Pavilion references and pays homage to existing and erased places that have helped communities over time and continue to do so today.


Places that the Serpentine Pavilion 2020/2021 draws on and honours:


136 Kingsland Road High Street E8 2NS
Centerprise was a ground-breaking community centre, publishing project, bookshop and café active between 1971 and 2012.

The Four Aces Club
12 Dalston Lane, E8 2LX
The Four Aces Club was a pioneering music space. Established in 1966, it was one of the first venues in the United Kingdom to play music by Black artists.

Feminist Library Pamphlet Collection at Bishopsgate Institute
230 Bishopsgate, EC2M 4H
The Feminist Library Pamphlet Collection compiled over thirty-five years, offers insights to women’s lives across the world. The collection also gives a comprehensive view of the Women’s Liberation Movement. The collection’s diversity is not limited to the subject matter – material ranges from grey unpublished literature and official reports to campaign literature and ephemera.

Theatre of Black Women
136 Kingsland High Street, E8 2NS
Theatre of Black Women was Britain’s first Black women’s theatre company active in the 1980s. It was founded by Bernardine Evaristo, Patricia Hilaire and Paulette Randal.

Cardinal Heenan Centre
326 High Road, IGı 19P
Cardinal Heenan Centre is a community centre in lford. It provides accommodation and facilities to community groups, who in turn offer services to and for the local population.

Centre 151- Vietnam, Laos & Cambodia supporting the community
151 Whiston Road, Ez 8GU
Centre 151 is an independent charity based in the heart of Hackney, promoting culture, arts and community integration at every level. The Centre offers a wide range of activities and amenities for the benefit of local and wider communities.

East London Mosque
446-450 Commercial Road, E1 oJN
82-92 Whitechapel Road, E1 1JQ
The East London Mosque inaugurated in three adjacent houses on Commercial Road in 1940.
Following successful fundraising, a purpose-built mosque was opened in 1985 on Whitechapel Road, which became home to the East London Mosque and later expanded to include the London Muslim Centre.

Brick Lane Jamme Masjid
59 Brick Lane, E1 6L
The building now known as the Brick Lane Jamme Masjid was built in 1743-4 as the Neuve Eglise, a French Protestant chapel. In 1897 it was acquired by a Lithuanian Orthodox Jewish group known as the Mahzikei Hadas (Strengtheners of the Faith) and converted to become the Spitalfields Great Synagogue. In the second half of the twentieth century the Jewish population dispersed to thesuburbs, making way for a new wave of Muslim immigrants from eastern India and Bangladesh; the synagogue fell into disuse for a time before becoming a mosque in 1976.

Rio Cinema
107 Kingsland High Street, E8 2PB
The original building that houses the Rio was converted into one of London’s very first cinemas in 1909 by Clara Ludski, who named it the Kingsland Palace of Animated Pictures. Over the years, the cinema expanded and changed owners several times. In April 1976 the Rio was established as an independent cooperative took over, and since 1979 it has been run as a not-for-profit registered charity with an elected board of local people who act as volunteer trustees.

Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archives
277 Bancroft Road, Ei 4DQ
Tower Hamlets Local History Library and Archives holds unique resources on the history of the London Borough of Tower Hamlets created from the former Metropolitan Boroughs of Bethnal Green, Poplar and Stepney.

Ridley Road Market
Ridley Road, E8 2NP
Ridley Road has been home to the market in the heart of Dalston since the end of 188os. The market consists of around 150 stalls offering a diverse range of international produce.

Valence Library
Becontree Avenue, RM8 3HT
Valence library is a local library located in Barking and Dagenham. In 2021, it will turn into a Becontree Centenary Arts and Culture Hub to bring together a series of performances, workshops, commissions, courses and family activities in partnership with local organisations.

Jagonari Women’s Centre
183-185 Whitechapel Road, E1 DN
Over 30 years Jagonari Women’s Centre offered crucial support and education for local women and represented part of the wider collective action of the Bengali community in Tower Hamlets. The building for the Centre was designed by London-based feminist architects’ practice Matrix.

Island Social Club
258 Kingsland Road, E8 4DG
Island Social Club 2016 was founded in 2016 by Joseph Pilgrim and Marie Mitchell. It connects people to British Caribbean culture by investigating the diaspora experience and creating spaces to interact with the culture.


West Indian Gazette
250 Brixton Road, SW9 6AQ
West Indian Gazette was was a newspaper founded in by Claudia Jones in Brixton and widely considered to have been Britain’s first major black newspaper. It operated between 1958-1965.

198 Contemporary Arts and Learning
198 Railton Road, SE24 OJT
Founded in 1988 as Roots Community, 198 is a contemporary art space dedicated to nurturing and Supporting the careers of emerging, under-represented artists and to advancement of public interest in the visual arts.

26 Deptford High Street, SE8 4AF
Chaconia is take-away in London that offers traditional Caribbean cuisine, specialising in roti from Trinidad & Tobago.

Umana Yana
294 Croxted Road, SE24 9DA
Umana Yana is a restaurant that specialises in Guyanese food prepared daily by the owner.

Blueprint for All
39 Brookmill Road, SE8 4HU
Established in 1998 as The Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust, after the murder of Stephen Lawrence in 1993, Blueprint for All is a centre for community learning and social research inspiring and motivating young people. It also acts as a hub where industry, community organisations and educational institutions can exchange information on urban design and regeneration.

The Young Vic
66 The Cut, SE1 8LZ
The Young Vic is a performing arts venue, established in 1970 as an offshoot of the Old Vic. It is dedicated to supporting new directors and artists working in theatre and performance today.

Brixton Market
Electric Avenue, SW9 8JX
Brixton Market is an undercover market, which in the twentieth century become a thriving hub for the local Caribbean community. The Market began on Atlantic Road in the 1870os and subsequently spread to Brixton Road. Electric Avenue built in 188os was one of the first streets to have electric light.

Fazl Mosque
16 Gressenhall Road, SW18 50L
The Fazl Mosque also known as The London Mosque, is the first purpose-built mosque in London opened in 1926.

The Albany
Douglas Way, SE8 4AG
The Albany is an arts centre in the heart of Deptford, which houses two studio theatres, a performance café, rehearsal and meeting rooms and a bar. It was originally established in 1894 as The Deptford Pund to improve the plight of local people and opened its first building, the Albany Institute in 1899.
It became the Albany Empire in the 1970s, renowned as a pioneering home for radical community arts. The building was destroyed by fire in 1978, leading to its purpose-built new building in 1982.

The Feminist Library at Sojourner Truth Community Centre
161 Sumner Road, SE15 6JL
Originally known as the Women’s Research and Resources Centre, the Feminist Library was set up in 1975, at the height of the Women’s Liberation Movement, a time of intense political campaigning and lively collective organising. It houses a large archive collection of feminist literature, particularly Women’s Liberation Movement materials dating from the late 1960s to the 1990s. The Library is also an autonomous feminist community space.

Esu Hair Salon
72 Atlantic Road, SW9 8PX
Esu Hair Salon is a hair and beauty salon in Brixton that specialises in Afro and European hair.

Dominican Hair Republic
86 Brixton Road, SW9 6BH
Dominican Hair Republic was established in London in 2012. It offers professional hair care services specialising in Afro hair and curly textured hair.

Black Cultural Archives
1 Windrush Square, SW2 1EF
Black Cultural Archives is the only national heritage centre dedicated to collecting, preserving and celebrating the histories of African and Caribbean people in Britain.

Railton Road
Railton Road, SE24
Railton Road runs between Brixton and Herne Hill in the London Borough of Lambeth. The 1981 Brixton riot started on this street. The George public house was burnt down, and a number of other buildings were damaged. The George was replaced with a Caribbean bar called Mingles in 1981, which lasted in one form or another until the 2000s. It served as an important hub for local African and Caribbean diasporic communities for radical political activity and working-class community.

Buster Mantis
3-4 Resolution Way, SE8 4NT
Buster Mantis is an independent family-run bar, eatery and creative space whose owners have lived between Jamaica and London for the last 6o years. It takes its name from the first prime minister of Jamaica, Sir Alexander Bustamante, who was instrumental in establishing the country’s independence.

Roti Joupa
12 Clapham High Street, SW4 7UT
Roti Joupa is a family-run take away restaurant, that serves traditional Trinidadian cuisine.


51-53 Edgware Road, W2 2HZ
Shishawi is an Egyptian restaurant and shisha lounge. It operates in a building that housed a Royal Cinema from 1938. In 1961 it was overtaken by Jacey Cinemas and Gala Film Distributers, who focused on continental and art house films and screened erotic films towards the end of its operations. After closing in 1979, the building briefly reopened showing Arabic films and shut in 1981.

New Beacon Books
76 Stroud Green Road, N4 3EN
New Beacon BookS was founded in 1966 by John La Rose as one of UK’s first Black publishing houses, specialist bookshop and international book distributor. For over 5o years New Beacon Books has made available to Britain and its communities, poetry, literature, non-fiction, history and children’s books from Africa, Caribbean, Asia, African America, Europe, South America and Black Britain.

George Padmore Institute
76 Stroud Green Road, N4 3EN
The George Padmore Institute set up in 1991 grew out ofa community of people connected with New Beacon Books. The Institute is an archive, educational research and information centre housing materials and documents relating mainly to Black communities of Caribbean, African and Asian descent in post-war Britain and continental Europe. The Institute organises and preserves the archival materials in its care to ensure they are available to individuals, researchers, students, schools and anyone interested in the social, economic and cultural history of black British communities.

The Showroom
63 Penfold Street, NW8 8PO
The Showroom is a contemporary art space focused on collaborative approaches to cultural production within its locality and beyond. The Showroom was established in 1983 in East London but moved from its Bonner Road site in Bethnal Green to Penfold Street near Edgware Road in 2009.

Portman Early Childhood Centre
4 Lilestone Street, NW8 8SU
The Portman Early Childhood Centre provides education, care and family support services for young children and their families living in the Church Street area of Westminster, North London. These include a nursery school, adult education classes, family support, employment services, parenting groups and workshops.

Horizon Foods
Unit 8, 14 Bull Lane, N18 1SX
Horizon Foods creates and supplies authentic Trinidadian products, specialising in roti.

Trinidad Roti Shop
27 Craven Park Road, NW10 8SE
Trinidad Roti Shop is a restaurant specialising in Trinidadian roti and traditional Caribbean cuisine.

PEER Gallery
97-99 Hoxton Street, N1 60L
PEER is an independent arts organisation, putting down deep roots within the socially, culturally and economically diverse area of Hoxton. PEER’s core ethos is to embed its activities into the local community and to offer and promote the highest quality art as being part of daily life.

Khadija’s Garden
71 Fanshaw Street, N1 6LA
In 2016, PEER fundraised to redesign the corner of Hoxton Street and Fanshaw Street on the Arden Estate. The project involved planting flowers, Silver Birch trees, adding seating, bins and bike parking to create a pocket park and community hub for local people to enjoy. The garden was renamed Khadija’s Garden in 2017, in memory of artist Khadija Saye, who was killed in the Grenfell Tower fire on 14 June 2017.

The Islamic Cultural Centre and The London Central Mosque
Mosque Tower, Outer Circle, NW8 7RG
The London Central Mosque, also known as the Regent’s Park Mosque, is an Islamic place of worship located on the edge of Regent’s Park. It was designed by Sir Frederick Gibberd and completed in 1977.


Club Eleven
41 Great Windmill Street, WıD 7LU
50 Carnaby Street, WiF oQA
Club Eleven was a nightclub operating between 1948 and 1950 which played a significant role in the emergence of the bebop jazz movement in Britain.

The Mosaic Rooms
226 Cromwell Road, SW5 0SW
A leading London based non-profit cultural organisation dedicated to supporting and promoting contemporary culture from and about the Arab world.

Stuart Hall Library
16 John Islip Street, SWIP 4JU
The Stuart Hall Library is the intellectual and social hub of Iniva, providing a context for Iniva’s archive and the opportunity to study the institution’s legacy preserving and promoting the work of artists of African and Asian descent born or based in the UK. The library offers a specialist collection of over 10,000 volumes on the history of contemporary visual art and culture within an international and transnational context, as well as providing critical material on issues of cultural identity. It also runs talks, workshops and events including the Research Network Programme.

Notting Hill Carnival
Notting Hill, Ladbroke Grove and Westbourne Park, W10 The Notting Hill Carnival is an annual carnival taking place on the streets of Notting Hill since 1966 over the late August bank holiday weekend. It is led by Caribbean communities and attracts around two and a half million people annually, making it one of the world’s largest street festivals, and a significant event in Black British culture.

Electric Cinema
191 Portobello Road, WI1 2ED
The Electric Cinema is one of the oldest working cinemas in Britain. It opened in 1910 as one of the first buildings in Britain to be designed specifically for motion picture exhibition, and in the vicinity to be supplied with electricity. Throughout the years the cinema changed ownership several times and in 1993 became Britain’s first Black cinema for a brief time. Today it is operated by Soho House.

The Gate Picturehouse
87 Notting Hill Gate, W11 3JZ
The Gate Picturehouse is a cinema, which first opened in 1911 as the Electric Palace. Since the1950s the venue has steadily built a reputation as the place to see avant-garde and experimental cinema alongside repertory art-house programmes. With new ownership in 1974 came the change of name to The Gate. In 2003 the cinema joined the Picturehouse family and in 2004 it received a full refurbishment.

Islamic Centre of England
140 Maida Vale, W9 1QB
The Islamic Centre of England was founded in 1995 and opened officially in 1998. It provides spiritual guidance for the Muslim community at large, and also caters for the social, cultural, educational and recreational needs of members of the community -especially women and the next generation. It also focuses on disseminating authentic knowledge about Islam and to providing non-Muslims with a better and clearer understanding of Islam.

The Mangrove
8 All Saints Road, WI1 IHA
The Mangrove was a Caribbean restaurant which opened in 1968 by Trinidadian community activist and civil rights campaigner Frank Crichlow. It was a meeting place for the Black community in the area, as well as for white radicals, artists, authors, and musicians. It functioned as the unofficial headquarters for the Notting Hill Carnival. It was repeatedly raided by the police on grounds of drug possession, despite a lack of evidence.

The Tabernacle
34-35 Powis Square, WU 2AY
The Tabernacle is a multi-purpose venue and community hub in the heart of Notting Hill and is the home to Notting Hill Carnival. Originally the building was founded as an Evangelical Christian church in 1869. In 1975 The Tabernacle closed as a church and was taken over by the Council and later became the Tabernacle Arts and Community Centre

Hilltop Roti
46 Drayton Green Road, W13 8RY
Hilltop Roti was a Caribbean restaurant specialising in roti. After operating for over 5 years, it closed in 2020.

Roti Kitchen
6 Leeland Road, W13 GHH
Roti Kitchen is a restaurant in West London specialising in Caribbean and Indian roti.

Wall of Truth Maxilla Space
Westway Flyover, W10 5XL
The Maxilla memorial and healing space, incorporating the Wall of Truth, was created by and for members of the community in response to the great suffering after the fire at Grenfell Tower on14 June 2o17. The Wall of Truth is situated underneath the Westway flyover in direct line of site to nearby Grenfell Tower.