The Social Gathering

An exhibition of work inspired by The Social Gathering, our online response to lockdown. Featuring extracts of works from our contributors and reimagined by designer Leanor Hanny
19 July 2021 - 31 August 2021

The Social Gathering was a response to the first lockdown.

As soon as The Social’s doors shut in March 2020 for an undetermined length of time, we dreamt up The Social Gathering as a way of keeping the bar’s disparate community together via its website. Alongside our nightly Twitter drinks, it was the only way we could think of filling the place with spirits (the ghostly kind).

We asked friends, authors, musicians and artists to tell their stories, to add their words and pictures to our online world with the same attitude and energy that they’d bring to the stage in the basement. We launched books that should have been celebrated in the bar and held vigils for festivals that couldn’t be held from May Day in Padstow to Glastonbury. We raised glasses to great lives lost and raised barricades between us and our incompetent leaders. And we posted daily for over a year, carrying on the conversations that would have been happening every night in the venue; those pure, wonderful spiralling narratives that form beautiful and strange shapes as evenings progress.

This exhibition was put together by Leanor Hanny, designer of The Social Gathering collection we published at the end of 2020 (available to buy here). It is a snapshot of what went on on the site, taken from a far bigger archive that documents a year in the life of a bar that wasn’t open.

The Social Gathering is brought to you by The Social and our friends at White Rabbit Books.

Huge thanks to Leanor Hanny, Tom Noble & Ellie Freedman.

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