A trip to the Barbican Conservatory


The Barbican Centre is a mass of grey buildings that is best known as host to a theatre, several concert halls, a cinema and an art gallery. However, what many people don’t know is that high up on top of this iconic building, thousands of tropical plants have made their home, overlooking the City of London.

The vegetation is housed inside the Barbican’s Conservatory and allows the viewer to step out of rainy London and into a tropical haven. It is only open to the public on select days, often Sunday’s but I really wish I took the opportunity to visit much sooner! The interior is stunning and contains over 2,000 species of tropical plants. The lush shades of green are a startling and welcoming contrast to the Barbican’s grey exterior. As a viewer, you are able to climb up multiple levels and admire the beauty of this oasis from every angle. At the top I found a room full to burst with cacti while on the lower level is a pond full of koi fish. This blog normally concerns itself with the more classical visual arts, but I assure you that you would be able to appreciate the conservatory just as much as any art gallery or exhibition.

The conservatory has a sense of tranquility and serenity that I certainly find difficult to locate in central London. It was the perfect place of refuge during a dreary Sunday afternoon and is something that everyone should be able to have the joy of discovering. I thoroughly recommend spending your next lazy Sunday reconnecting with nature.

Posted by

Lizzy Vartanian Collier aka Gallery Girl is a writer and curator based in London. Her work has been featured in publications including Dazed, Hyperallergic and Vogue Arabia. She was curator of Perpetual Movement during AWAN Festival 2018 and in 2019 had a residency at the Lab at Darat Al Funun in Amman, Jordan. She has also worked with Armenia Art Fair for its inaugural edition and previously worked as an editor at I.B.Tauris Publishers. In 2019 she co-founded Arsheef, Yemen’s first contemporary art gallery. She has given workshops at Manara Culture in Amman, Jordan and Victoria and Albert Museum in London, UK. As of 2020 she is currently in law school, with the ambition of greater understanding the intersection between art and the law.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s