Things to do
A RIVER RUNS THROUGH IT: Art exhibition A River Runs Through It launches today, showcasing work by a number of artists all inspired by London. See paper sculptures, intricate drawn cityscapes, screen prints and interactive artworks, all based on the capital. Oxo Tower, free, just turn up, 4-8 September
DOCUMENTARY FESTIVAL: The Open City Documentary Festival celebrates the art of making non-fiction films, through a series of screenings, exhibitions, talks and masterclasses. Our picks include rhino documentary The Last Male On Earth, and Breathless Animals, about growing up in Maoist China. Various locations and prices, book ahead, 4-10 September
LIBRARY TOUR: Join a guide for a free, informal tour of the Wellcome Collection Library, and find out what’s kept there. Learn about some of the more unusual items in the collection and how everything is kept and cared for. Wellcome Collection (Euston), free, just turn up, 11.30am-12pm
DOGGETT’S COAT AND BADGE: Every year, the Doggett’s Coat and Badge Wager is held on the Thames. Pick a spot on the riverside between London Bridge and Albert Bridge, and watch up to six young watermen racing the 7.4km course, in a tradition that’s been running continuously since 1715. London Bridge/Albert Bridge, free, just turn up, 2pm
LATE NIGHT BOOKS: Indulge in a spot of late night book shopping at London Review Bookshop. It’s free to attend, includes a glass of wine, and you get 10% off any books you purchase on the night. The cake shop stays open late too selling seasonal bakes, and is well worth swinging by. London Review Bookshop (Bloomsbury), free, book ahead, 6pm-8pm
CREATIVE LETTERING: Get an introduction to hand lettering, with guidance from an experienced artist, and learn techniques to make your own quote on chalk board or paper using chalk pens. The class is for complete beginners, and is BYOB. Borough (exact address revealed on booking), £35, book ahead, 6.30pm-9pm
WOMEN OF WESTMINSTER: MP Diane Abbott and historian Diane Atkinson chat to Rachel Reeves, MP and author of Women of Westminster. Hear them discuss the advances and achievements of women in parliament over the last century, since the election of the first female MP to sit in the Commons, Nancy Astor. Pages of Hackney, £6, book ahead, 7pm-9pm
18TH CENTURY MEDICINE: Hear from staff at the Old Operating Theatre about the accidents that happened and medical treatment that was required in the docks of 18th century Southwark. With the arrival of cargo such as festering whale blubber, germs were rife, and heavy crates meant accidents happened often. The Golden Hinde (Borough), £7.50, book ahead, 7.30pm
PIONEERING POSTERS: David Bownes, former head of collections at the London Transport Museum, reveals some gorgeous tube posters created by female designers. They date from the early 1900s to now, and the event ties in with the soon to close Modernist British Printmaking exhibition. Dulwich Picture Gallery, £12/£10, book ahead, 7.30pm-9pm
STARRY NIGHT: Street art meets Van Gogh at this Pop-Up Painting session. Have a go at creating your own street art interpretation of his Starry Night masterpiece under the guidance of a qualified artist (and the influence of a drink or two). All materials are provided and all abilities are welcome. Revolution Clapham, £27.99, book ahead, 7.30pm-9.30pm
Tube ponderings with Barry Heck
Our resident tube fancier dishes out daily thoughts on the London Underground.
This week marks 353 years since the Great Fire of London. The conflagration destroyed most of the area we now call the Square Mile. But how would it have affected your tube journey? Here’s my in-no-way-anachronistic map of how the modern tube stations fit onto the footprint of the fire. Looks like significant disruption to the Circle line — plus ça change. Follow Barry on Twitter @HeckTube.
Good cause of the day
Book ahead for Sunday’s gig at O2 Empire Shepherd’s Bush, in tribute to cultural icons lost to HIV. The evening of music, dance, spoken word and conversation celebrates Freddie Mercury, Alvin Ailey, Gil Scot Heron and Prudence Nobantu Mabele, and raises money for the Countdown to Zero HIV campaign. Find out more and book tickets.