Shard Times

8 Jul

The last of these photos was taken from my kitchen window in West Brompton, roughly six miles away from London Bridge. I have read many, many complaints about the Shard, about its failure as a design, about the dubious megalomania of which it is symbolic, and of how it has invaded Londoners’ sightlines. Its critics see it as an attention-grabbing zelig, an imposition on every treasured panorama of the city skyline.

Despite everything, I rather like it. It’s comically out of place, ‘a giant alien mothership’ as London blogger John Godley has it. To put it into the grandiose parlance of tescoinferno, it reminds us exactly where we stand, both physically and figuratively.

For anyone allergic to its jagged thrust*, here’s a little-known fact: if you stand directly in the middle of Waterloo Bridge, it completely disappears, blocked out by the built-up curve of the river. Aesthetically- offended trolls rejoice!

*And no, it’s not ‘phallic’- well, not according to my experiences, at least. 

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