Framed by brick walls bearing hundreds of letters in honour of the King of Rock, a green door opens onto the last home of Freddie Mercury, the remarkably talented frontman of Queen. In 1985, the singer moved to this quiet street in Kensington and sumptuously decorated the rooms of this home that would host raucous parties and where the studio annex would host recording sessions late into the night. When, with his health deteriorating, the rock star withdrew from the public eye, he would spend more and more time in the intimacy of this home. Assisted, until his death by his ex-lover and best friend, Mary Austin, Mercury died in this house on November 24, 1991. He was cremated and his ashes were placed in a secret location, known only to Mary Austin. Following the last wishes of her friend, the woman, along with her family, still lives in Garden Lodge, surrounded by the furnishings that Freddie Mercury picked out himself. The building was built in 1908 for painter Cecil Rae who lived in the house with his wife and, before Mercury, it had numerous high-profile owners, including Peter Wilson, president of the auction house Sotheby’s.
More than 50 artists, half a millennium of art and the immense variety of the planet’s cultures - a fascinating journey awaits at the Camden Art Centre, exploring the intimate tie between humans and plants.