POCKET DYERS & ASSOCIATES
Oxford Brookes School of Architecture · BA Year 3
EXPLORE THE DRAWING
Zoom in, can you see the wallets being pickpocketed, secretly delivered, dyed and resold?
There may be some magician’s animals hidden too…
STOLEN WALLET DYERS
Pickpocket ‘Associates’ steal wallets, keep the money, then deliver them through a discreet flexible screen to the shop. Pocket Dyers sort them by type, destroy identifiables via incinerator and disguise them by dying. After being left to dry on ventilated racks they are sold on the street as new.
3 connected modular spaces each with a primary use.
drying / transfer
Material research into renewable biomass plastics from starch and gelatine. Used for composite structural walls, flexible screens and insulation.
Replacing and occupying the wall between the Magic Shop and archway.
CREATING & FILLING A POCKET
A steel frame replaces the wall creating a pocket for the modular shop to slot into. The moving display unit can live inside / outside the shop or roam the nearby Leather Lane Market.
INTEGRATING THE MAGIC SHOP
Having removed the wall and existing shelving, new shelves and storage have been added to the exterior primary steel frame, for use by the magic shop.
Moving to a modular design, with a primary use for each space.
MAGIC & PICKPOCKETING
Exploring the craft of magic, sleight of hand, pickpocketing and Dickensian history of the International Magic Shop. This research forms the basis of the Pocket Dyers & Associates design.
Outside the shop roadworks of 2014 are combined with the busy streets of Charles Dickens’ 1800s Clerkenwell. Beer barrels note the brewery that previously occupied the site and trams covered the area from 1860-1950. Inside the shop of today stacked shelves form the backdrop as live magic tricks are performed.
OBJECTS OF FOCUS
Cluttered shelves and cabinets – How much detail can the eyes track while walking in and out of the shop?
MAGICIANS & PICKPOCKETS
Sleight of hand is used both in the art of pickpocketing and magic. The connection and hidden relationship between magicians and pickpockets is long established, with magicians drawing in crowds of potential targets.
Oliver Twist (1838)
“What was Oliver’s horror and alarm as he stood a few paces off, looking on with his eyelids as wide open as they would possibly go, to see the Dodger plunge his hand into the old gentleman’s pocket, and draw from thence a handkerchief!”
DICKENS & OLIVER TWIST
Charles Dickens lived in Clerkenwell. Many descriptions of the streets around 89 Clerkenwell are scattered throughout Oliver Twist. His character Oliver lives with Fagin and his gang of juvenile pickpockets in their lair near Clerkenwell. Initially unaware of their criminal pickpocketing, he believes they ‘made’ wallets and handkerchiefs.
LOCATION 89 ¹/₂ Clerkenwell Road, London
CLIENT Pocket Dyers
TUTORS Johan Hybschmann, Matthew Springett & Margaret Bursa
Oxford Brookes School of Architecture Unit E · Exhibited in Oxford & London
Oxford Brookes School of Architecture · Published in 2015 Yearbook