Skip to content

Oi! East London Sukkah

See the film!

For latest details, go to East London Sukkah


* a temporary, fragile structure, built at the end of harvest in the autumn.
* a structure built of natural materials, a house of plants and branches.
* a  home for 7 days, where, you eat, sleep, party and make love.
* a parody of a house, a satire on construction.
* a site where the lord of the manor becomes closer to the man who sleeps on the park bench.
* a temporary autonomous zone.
* a place of meeting, of radical hospitality.
* a place of our joy.

22-29 September 2010, Spitalfields City Farm, Buxton Street, London E1 5AR

What happens when you combine a truck load of recycled buliding materials, an ancient Jewish festival, large amounts of vegan food, cutting edge architecture, an urban farm and a mosque?
It’s not entirely clear, but we would very much like to invite you to the East London Sukkah to find out.

Jewdas, in collaboration with Openvizor, The East London Mosque and The Wayward Plant Registry are creating London’s first ever open-door, public Sukkah for a week of meals, workshops, talks and performances.

The sukkah is an inherently utopian space – a place of hospitality, of meeting, of being surrounding by nature. The East London Sukkah takes this idea further – imagining the sukkah as a ‘temporary autonomous zone’, a place where we can imagine, and discuss a world after oil, financial meltdown – a post-capitalist society. Throughout the week we hope to examine a vision of a simpler, more ethical society, one that could sustainably survive into the future. We are assembling a battery of speakers, artists, religious teachers (of many faiths), activists, radicals and mischief makers to explore these issues and create a temporary and ephemeral society to imagine and dream of alternative ways of living.
This project aims to celebrate sukkot in ways which take us beyond Jonah’s lonely booth on the outskirts of Nineveh, beyond the sukkahs of those forty years in the desert, beyond the sad shacks stuck up behind synagogues up and down the country, decorated inexpertly by children from Kittah Aleph, and beyond the ‘EZ lock Sukkah’ of (from $360 in case you were wondering).
The programme is still developing, but so far:

23 THURSDAY (LIVE BUILD AND LAUNCH) 6:30-9:30pm (with after party on Brick Lane)
We’ll be decorating the space together, and designers will be on hand to help you transform the structure with natural, reclaimed and recycled materials. Delicious vegetarian food and klezmer from Merlin and Polina Shepherd and Kavone). Includes exhibitions by artists Sunara Begum, Ruhul Abdin, Elizabeth Hingley, Rehan Jamil and Orly Orbach.
£4 in advance / £5 door.

24 FRIDAY: (FOOD, FAITH AND ART) 6:30-9:30pm

Artists and designers explore the themes of food and Sukkot. Includes a meal with Synnove Fredericks exploring the post-kosher rules of future foods, Antonia Grant’s “Smell Happening,” the Four Species by Orly Orbach, music from Poetic Pilgrimage. £4 in advance / £5 door.

A packed weekend of workshops, films and talks to give you tool to create alternative ways of living. Come eat, argue, create and organise!
Saturday includes workshops in permaculture, guerrilla gardening and designing with reclaimed materials, and a Wandering Jews Seudah Shlishit-Havdala) in collaboration with The East London Mosque (6pm).
Sunday includes The Islamic Community Food Project (Awareness, Grassroots Organising, & Action), a Radical Jewish East End walk with David Rosenberg (3.30pm) and an urban agriculture roundtable with talks by artists, designers and activists including Fruit City, The Wayward Plant Registry, The Urban Research Collective, London Harvest and
Sunday night we’ll have FOOD AND FILMS (£4 in advance / £5 door), with a vegetarian meal from Food Not Bombs, and a film programme including: The Yes Men Fix The World, Punk Jews (sneak preview episodes), and Just Do it: Get Off Your Arse and Change the World, a sneak preview, with live commentary from director Emily James.

Jewish and Muslim Migration in the Secular City: Paris, London and Birmingham. Contemporary research and arts practice exploring the forces of push and pull on people and communities in European cities.
Introduction by Rabbi Natan Levy (London School of Jewish Studies) on the meaning and contemporary resonance of the Sukkah. Abbas Nokhasteh (Openvizor) in conversation with Dr Laurence Podselver (Centre for Jewish Studies, Paris), Dr Moustafa Traore (anopeneye, Paris), Dr Ben Gidley (Centre on Migration, Policy and Society, Oxford University) and artists David Kendall and Elizabeth Hingley.
Plus a discussion led by artist Nabil Ahmed about the Bangladeshi students and the academies in East London, with an immigration lawyer and the students who were part of the project.

29 – WEDNESDAY (WHAT’S NEXT? A HARVEST PARTY) 6:30-9:30pm (with after party on Brick Lane)
Our final night will be a celebratory forum, a place to consider how to take the ideas from the sukkah further. Employing techniques from traditional Jewish learning in a new way we’ll attempt to build a consensus for a way forward. With delicious vegetarian food using the harvest grown in Spitalfields City Farm with the pop-up restauranteers, Rambling Restaurant, music by Vivi Lachs and Klezmer Klub, and folk chanteur Sam Lee ! £4 in advance / £5 door.
Full information :
Go to the events section to reserve reduced price entry.
We really need volunteers to help build the (epically proportioned) sukkah. The construction process will be from Monday to Wednesday next week. Please email for more details. All those who help with construction will get an extra, complimentary, shake of Geoffrey Cohen’s lulav.

Spitalfields City Farm, Buxton Street, London E1 5AR

Share unto the nationsShare on twitter
Share on facebook
Share on tumblr
Share on reddit

6 thoughts on “Oi! East London Sukkah”

  1. Hope Winter Hall

    As a Christian Liberation Theologist who attended, almost by accident,The Wednesday night event I wanted to tell you all that I have rarely experienced such true undrstanding that I was with people who understood the word of God.

  2. I am reform Jew with karaite belief.because anarchism is part of Torah I am looking for any jewish organisation which has anarchism as main goal. If you are such group please send me email.I want to join to be part of it I am yours.if you are White supremacist group I do not want to join.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *