What exactly is the purpose of this new London gallery?

I was keen to visit Rivington Place, the first new-build public gallery in London in almost 40 years – all very exciting.

Except it isn’t. A filler in the belly of Shoreditch’s ever-expanding waistline, it promises a lot, yet fails to deliver. From the opening exhibition, a listless look at London’s immigrant population, to the indulgent exterior contrasting sharply with the poky layout inside, I was left flat and confused.

Its website claims it will be an important national resource and a ‘cultural and social hub’. The only ones I can see using the library and meeting rooms are academics and media types, hardly the diverse community it claims to represent. National resource? No. A venue for the latest Hoxton party? Let’s see.

Lily McIvor, Senior designer, 999 Design, London EC2

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