2 Cygnet SQ, SE2 9FA
Thurs - Sun: 10-5


Got Damp,  is an installation by Irish artist Avril Corroon that explores damp as ‘a crisis of nature in the home’ and the experience of the ‘precariat’ within contemporary Britain. The project was commissioned by TACO! as part of its work with communities across South East London.

Got Damp was developed over 2 years of research into living conditions as a galvanising issue for communities in exercising their political voice. At the heart of this research has been an ongoing exchange with 55 households from London and Dublin.  Avril provided energy efficient dehumidifiers and support to manage damp, whilst households contributed experiences, ideas and collected their damp as a material for an artwork.  

Avril’s enquiry sets out to frame damp as an entity with agency and the sculptural potential to represent the socio-economic conditions and structures that created it.  The resulting artwork consists of an installed structure,  presented within the gallery. Modelled on the footprint of a domestic living space, the structure is constructed from double skinned clear plastic walls. ‘Damp’ collected by participating households and held in jerry cans and barrels is pumped and filtered to run down the inside of the perspex walls.  

Central to the installation is a 30min film made by the artist that documents the lived experience of households who live with damp in their homes.  Their testimony is juxtaposed with thermal imagery and shots of the affects of damp on the fabric of buildings. Individuals describe the physicality of damp, their corporeal relationship to it, how damp impacts on their environment, health and their possessions. Others discuss their attempts to control damp or the lack of support from their landlord.

The title Got Damp refers to an historic incident in Thamesmead. In 1971 residents collectively organised to highlight the issue of damp and water seepage in their recently built modern prefab homes. A visiting MP with delegates from the GLC was greeted by posters in the windows of residents simply stating ‘I’ve got damp’. The impact of such a large volume of protest posters displayed in windows captured the scale of the problem and quickly led to remedial work being carried out by the GLC.

Got Damp is funded by Arts Council England and the Arts Council of Ireland.


Damp is caused by excessive moisture in the air that has no way to vent or escape. Such moisture can be generated through problems with the fabric or design of a building, or through our every day living such as breathing, cooking, drying clothes or bathing.  If left untreated damp can damage buildings and lead to the growth of moulds which can be harmful to human health.

Damp can affect any type of home, old and new, and the experience of damp transcends social class. However damp has a cultural stigma unfairly associated with it. The ability to manage and address damp, and the impact it has is often defined by wider socio-economic structures outside of a single persons control. Those within precarious economic situations or living in rented accommodation are often more vulnerable to the effects of damp and have less capacity to manage it. At a time of increasing economic precarity for many communities, the prevalence of damp as an issue has become an indicator of the UK’s underlying social inequalities.  


Avril Corroon is an Irish artist who lives and works in London. She works across moving image, performance, and sculpture, combining collaboration, social engagement, absurd humour, and political insight to form compelling visual and material narratives that explore contemporary lived experience.

She was the recipient of the Freelands Foundation Bursary, and the Next Generation Award by the Irish Arts Council in 2020. She has exhibited and performed widely including Peer Gallery (London), the Lab Gallery (Dublin), Platform Arts (Belfast), Temple Bar Gallery (Dublin), Ormston House (Limerick), Irish Film Institute, and Sismógrafo (Portugal).
*Images courtesy of Tom Carter 




Open Thurs-Sun, 10:00-18:00

︎      ︎       ︎       ︎

tel: 020 3904 6637