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Christmas Mysteries: A Sherlock Carol @MaryleboneTHLDN

A mash-up of Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol and Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes would seem an unlikely pairing. Yet it provides a surprisingly fun Christmas-themed adventure. These two Victorian tales (albeit separated by about 40 years) provide the basis for an inspired adventure at Christmastime that just also happens to turn out to be a murder mystery as well. With lavish costumes, a few spooky set pieces and some good old-fashioned stage trickery with lights and a lot of smoke machines, it is hard to resist. It returns to the Marylebone Theatre for Christmas after a run there last year.  The premise is that after Holmes sees off the criminal mastermind Professor Moriarty, he is left adrift in London. People thought he was dead, and he might as well be. Disinterested in the misdeeds of other Londoners, Holmes has even given up on his friend Dr Watson. It's almost as if he has become a Scrooge. Or half a Scrooge, moping about shouting, "bah" in respon

Art in a dark moist place: David Breuer-Weil's Project 4

David Breuer-Weil from Guy Natanel on Vimeo.

London-based artist David Breuer-Weil has taken over the vaults under Waterloo Station with Project 4, an evocative and thought-provoking exhibition about the world, the apocalypse and other social and political considerations. Nothing is small scale here. Everything is big. Most of his paintings are two metres high and four metres long. One giant canvas follows another and as you are drawn into the tunnels under Waterloo Station, they come together to form an impressive spectacle of colour. Interspersed amongst these is Breuer-Weil's sculptures which give the works an added dimension and physicality.

Many Londoners will be familiar with his works, particularly his sculpture. Emergence (see below after the jump) was temporarily installed into Hanover Square in 2012 and Visitor has previously been seen in Golders Hill Park, Hampstead.

Placing the works (and there is 70 canvasses and a number of sculptures) in the cold, rumbling and dark tunnels underneath Waterloo station they appear the perfect setting for exploring these themes. The works feel as if they emerge from the Victorian brickwork, shadows and puddles and are beautifully lit.

The works are for sale although given their size they are probably not for the average home. Even large offices might find it difficult to find the hanging space. In addition the subject matter which shows depictions of the apocalypse, violence and people without brains might not be the sort of message that a big bank would be keen on showing to its clients or workers.

The last time I was here was for the Old Vic Vaults festival and amongst the old furniture and dirty cushions, theatre and opera sprang up from the most unlikeliest of places. This time around there is an order, beauty and calmness about the area. Visiting the space again in the week when it was announced the Old Vic Tunnels would be closing in March, it was a reminder that while places may come and go, good ideas will always find a place to exist. And besides, there are many more miles of railway arches in South London...

The exhibition continues until 1 March. Worth a diversion down Leake Street off Lower Marsh to see what all the fuss is about... It is open from 10am to 6pm Monday to Saturday and Sundays from 12pm to 4pm. Be sure to check out the Lower Marsh Market if you're visiting on a weekday too...

Update:David Breuer Weil’s Project 4 has been so popular that the exhibition has been extended until Sunday 24th March. There will also be a giveaway of a signed catalogue raissoné to the 5000th visitor. Curator-led tours will take place at 2.30pm on Saturday 9th and Saturday 23rd March and the exhibition will stay open until 9pm on Thursday 21st March.

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