I knew that even as I wanted them to develop rather than abandon Battersea Power Station, I would hate what they did.
Between 8 October and 5 November 2006, the Serpentine Gallery moved into Battersea Power Station to show off their huge efforts in understanding contemporary Chinese art, and it sold out, mainly because everyone wanted to have a look inside the power station itself. And it was really the only chance that I personally know of to see the control rooms and stairwells and spaces, as subsequent opportunities were far more restrictive. The building was quite magnificent, walking through the wrecked turbine halls and up through the stairwells to the rest of the exhibition. Which was also magnificent, by the way, with outstanding work from either Lu Chunshen or Zhang Pei Li (I can’t remember) – a film cutting scenes from the Maoist era with applauding crowds: you had to be there; and Gu Dexin’s Wall of Apples. £5 a ticket: A triumph for all concerned.
IMHO, the best view of the power station is from Ebury Bridge Road, above the train tracks, and I try to make time to stop and look whenever I pass by. Mothers’ Day 2011 was a ridiculously busy day but I took half-an-hour out and went for a bicycle ride. I forget why I was cycling past here, but I stopped and made this photograph. This view is now ruined, with the space around the power station in-filled by building work, but this is a reminder to get out and shoot while you can.