Pink Floyd Drummer Returns to Battersea Power Station
Pink Floyd drummer and founder member Nick Mason made a rare public appearance last night as he returned to Battersea Power Station, the setting of the band’s iconic Animals album cover, 40 years after its release.
Marking the anniversary of the band’s hit album, which featured the famous inflatable pig, Mason was joined on stage by broadcaster and journalist Penny Smith and spoke of his ‘delight’ at being back in front of the four chimneys, each now rebuilt and painted as part of the regeneration of the area.
Mason was guest of honour at a special event at Battersea Power Station’s new multi-use arts venue created in partnership with Battersea Arts Centre, The Village Hall, where a photography exhibition inspired by the Power Station is being held from Friday 10th – Sunday 12th November. He was joined by Pink Floyd fans who got a behind-the-scenes glimpse into one of the UK’s most loved bands.
‘Visions of Battersea Power Station’ is a new exhibition by renowned British photographer, Adrian Houston, who has photographed such iconic figures as the Princess of Wales, the Dalai Lama and Luciano Pavarotti.
Mason regaled the audience with reminiscences of the now infamous moment when the giant inflatable pig, which was tethered to one of the Power Station’s chimneys for the iconic photo shoot, broke free from its moorings and was spotted by startled airline pilots at 30,000 feet before finally making it back to the ground, pursued by police helicopters, in Kent.
Nick Mason said: “It was one of those moments you just can’t predict. Needless to say, I’m pleased the pig made it back to earth in one piece! I’m delighted to be back at Battersea Power Station 40 years after that photoshoot and it’s great to see the place coming to life with restaurants, shops and venues like this one. I’m pleased to have been a part of its history and can’t wait to see what its future holds.”
Rob Tincknell, CEO of Battersea Power Station Development Company, said: “It’s great to welcome Nick Mason back to Battersea Power Station. Battersea become a huge cultural icon over the years, not only appearing on the Animals album cover, but featuring in all sorts of popular culture from The King’s Speech to Alfred Hitchcock’s Sabotage in the 1930s. We are also delighted to be hosting a fantastic exhibition by Adrian Houston. His work captures the Power Station in all its glory, with the artworks even containing actual pieces of the building’s structure, including the original chimneys.
“We hope lots of people will come down and check out the free exhibition and also visit the new restaurants and shops that have opened at Circus West Village.”
Adrian Houston said: “It was back in 2000 that I was commissioned by Guy Laliberté, co-founder of Cirque du Soleil, to photograph Battersea Power Station. The resulting images have always been very special to me, with one of the very first, Through the Wall, selected for the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition. To host this retrospective in the building itself, now being restored to its former glory, is very poignant. I hope this celebration of one of the nation’s most iconic and beloved structures will be equally embraced by the public.”
Visions of Battersea Power Station is open from 12-6pm Friday 10th and Saturday 11th and from 11-5pm on Sunday 12th November. It is free to attend. The Village Hall is located on Arches Lane, Circus West Village, SW8.