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Out of Order, Modern Art in Kingston

Home > London > Street Art | Fun Things To Do | Art
by David Hatton (subscribe)
I'm a blogger and writer living on the Chiswick-Acton border. Visit my wrestling blog at
Published April 6th 2013
Who you gonna call?
Does anyone have a phone on them?

Something you don't get enough of on Britain's high streets is modern art installations. They can brighten the place up and add a little extra pizazz to an otherwise dull and standard shopping trip. A little bit of randomness can do wonders when it comes to brightening up the day.

The venue

There's one such installation in Kingston upon Thames. At the eastern end of the high street on Old London Road, the end that's not near the Bentalls Centre and the marketplace, stands the work of David Mach. It's called Out Of Order. It consists of twelve disused (or should that be decommissioned?) red telephone boxes that lean against one another, one standing upright with the rest tilted to various degrees. They snake in a curve until the final one is almost, but not quite, flat on the ground.

When you first stumble across it it's a bizarre and magical moment. It's a wonderful surprise.

The piece was commissioned by the Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames council and was originally unveiled on December 19th 1989. Since then it's undergone one renovation, in 2001, to spruce it up after a decade of wear and tear.

Something to lighten up your day

What's particularly nice about this piece, perhaps more so than its random existence, is that there's no graffiti to be seen anywhere. In an age where the ruination of public property is so common it's nice that a piece like this, which could so easily be a target, has been spared.

Sadly there's no café or coffee shop with a direct line of sight to Out Of Order but there are several within walking distance. If you're okay with a brief stroll you can grab yourself a coffee and be back at the piece within five minutes, adding a bit of magic to your trip to the town.
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Why? Magic on the high street
When: All the time
Where: Old London Road, Kingston
Cost: Free
Your Comment
Hello. It's a lovely article. The only thing I find misleading is the fact of the Little Italy Restaurant not being mentioned. It's a friendly place with lovely staff and tasty food. You can see it on one of the pictures here. They do serve coffee there and home-made cakes indeed. Enjoy your stay in Kingston!!
by cowy1 (score: 0|2) 3042 days ago
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