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Bompas & Parr - Sensed Presence


Free Exhibition - SOLD OUT!

Date: 1st October - 19th October

Time: Wednesday- Sundays 12 – 8pm

Location – The Kirkaldy Testing Museum, 99 Southwark Street, Bankside, London SE1 0JF

In such a historical area that was heavily affected by the blitz, the plague, body snatchers as well as supporting a prison, operating theatre and major hospital it isn't surprising there are so many sightings of ghosts and other paranormal activity.

British conceptual artists Bompas and Parr have created an installation that fuses cutting edge science, art and spirituality. Transporting visitors in a multimedia séance that plays on both the technological and supernatural meaning of the word ‘medium’. The Koren Helmet (sometimes called the God Helmet) uses tiny electromagnets to stimulate the brain’s temporo-parietal lobes, through which you may experience religious and paranormal visions. 

Sensed Presence is now SOLD OUT!

To date, the artists have worked with some of the world’s biggest companies (Diageo, Cargill, Mercedes-Benz) and the world’s foremost cultural institutions (San Francisco Museum of Modern Art; Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; Garage Centre for Contemporary Culture, Moscow).

Bankside ghost stories 

Southwark has a rich history, as London's oldest borough there are numerous tales and sightings of ghosts in the area. Southwark is featured in 'The Pack of Autolycus' which is a book of broadside ballads including 'Strange and Terrible News of Ghosts' dating from 1624. 

There are also current examples, the most talked about and well known haunt the pubs of Borough and major attractions such as the Clink Prison Museum. One such example is the George Inn. The current George Inn building was built in 1677 replacing the original building which was destroyed in a fire. The older building is said to date back to the 1500s and is shown clearly as 'Gorge' on one of the first maps of Southwark dated around 1542. It is currently owned by the National Trust and is the only remaining galleried coaching inn in London. A ghost called Miss Murray is rumoured to walk the stairs of the George. The presence of this elderly Edwardian lady supposedly lived above the building in a previous life. She is said to have an aversion to technology, tills crash with no apparent fault and sometimes digital cameras malfunction within the pub.

The Crown Public House is built on the spot where George Chapman, the serial killer, murdered one of his wives. Decades later the staff reported hearing a child crying. The licensee’s mother caught sight of a man in one of the upstairs rooms who laughed and vanished. After a carrycot found in one of the boarded rooms was thrown away the reports stopped. Yet another pub, the Anchor Inn on Clink Street is said to be haunted by a dog who lost his tail protecting his master from press gangers.

There are many stories from the Clink Prison Museum of visitors sighting figures and from the staff have experienced doors unlocking and locking themselves as well as mysterious footsteps. The museum is built on part of the original building which was used as a lock up from the 12th century through to 1780 when it was burnt to the ground. Many people died within the walls, it has become so well known that there are regular ghost hunting events in the building. Visitors claim to have seen a young figure playing with chains and woman sitting on a chair disappearing through the floor whilst a researcher says a pile of sawdust was left on his chair every morning.


Earlier Event: September 28
Riverside Stage - 28th September
Later Event: October 5
Riverside Stage - 5th October