Experience Luke Jerram's Spellbinding Mars: War & Peace Installation For Free This Summer

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Last Updated 15 August 2023

Experience Luke Jerram's Spellbinding Mars: War & Peace Installation For Free This Summer

This is a sponsored article on behalf of Kensington and Chelsea Festival.

 A sculpture of mars hanging from a church ceiling
Image: Bob Pitchford

Luke Jerram has held us all spellbound in recent years, with his luminescent sculptures of Earth and the Moon — installed in historical halls — even swimming pools. Now, there's a chance to witness the pioneering artist's installation of Mars, and bathe in the otherworldly glow of this Red Planet replica in Kensington and Chelsea this summer. This is the first time that Mars: War & Peace has ever been displayed inside a church. What's more, it's totally free to view at both indoor and outdoor locations in the borough.

As part of the Kensington and Chelsea Festival — running through July and August — Mars: War & Peace appears at three magnificent venues:

  • St John the Baptist Church W14 8AH (22-30 July)
  • All Saints' Church W11 1JS (31 July-8 August)
  • Jubilee Square, Kensington Town Hall W8 7NX (10-13 August)
Silhouette of a person in front of the glowing Mars sculpture, with their arms held out
Image: Luke Jerram

In each location, visitors can get up close to the 1:1 million-scale sculpture, which is seven metres in diameter, and meticulously details every valley, crater, volcano and mountain of the Martian surface, using imagery taken from the NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. This is the closest you'll ever get to stepping foot on Mars. Probably.

It goes without saying that Mars: War & Peace is an infinitely instagrammable work of art — and whether you're on a mission to snap all of Jerram's works, or you're coming in fresh to his cosmic sculptures, you'll want to take plenty of photos.

Shot taken from below of four people standing beneath the glowing orb of the Mars sculpture
Image: Questacon

What's more, if you visit Mars: War & Peace at St John the Baptist Church, you can stick around and listen to concerts taking place here (again, it won't cost you a penny) — the fusion of dramatic music and the Red Planet up close is really something! Plus, on Saturday lunchtime on 22 July, there's an extra special performance of Holst's The Planets (including Mars, of course) by the London City Philharmonic, conducted by Olsi Qinami.

Don't miss what is sure to be one of the talking points of the arts calendar this summer; tickets to Luke Jerram's Mars: War & Peace are free, but you'll need to pre-book. And while you're at it, discover the wealth of other indoor and outdoor events — theatre, circus, dance, music, family shows, talks, walks and more — taking place as part of Kensington and Chelsea Festival until 31 August.