GALLERIES by Leigh Hans ST Pancras Station is said to owe its deeply impressive frontage to its architect's failure to win the contract for government buildings. George Gilbert Scott, who did not want the railway job. merely adapted his rejected Foreign Office design.
The gothic building, likened to a cathedral, takes its name from Old St Pancras Church which stands behind the station on a site probably visited by St Augustine. Its churchyard. clipped by the railway lines, was popular with Catholics long after the Reformation. Today Norman Blarney RA worships there and occasionally paints the clergy who on St Pancra.s Day bring out a relic of the unofficial railway saint.
In 1929 another famous local artist. Paul Nash, was moved to paint the station in a work he called Northern Adventures, Northern Adventures is also the title of an exhibition at St Pancras Station (daily until 15 November). Ten artists inspired by the station brought together by the Camden Arts Centre have created artworks
which are scattered around the public rooms and concourse. In the travel centre Bill Culbert's illuminated suitcases are up on the wall. Jane Mu!finger has some good jokes discreetly written up on glass in the panelled booking hall which could easily be a film set sacristy.
Although part of the station exterior is under wraps this show gives an excuse to look more closely at the Gilbert Scott interior whilst searching for Stuart Brisley's rat trap or Antoni Malinowski's map.
To the east of the station up Pentonville Road, and behind a classical church frontage, is the Crafts Council where Out of the Frame (daily except Mondays until November I free) looks at the transformation of embroidery. The earliest examples include a pulpit fall in Glasgow-style an nouveau.
The influence of worn Cistercian encaustic tiles can be seen in Hazel Bruce's latest hand
stitched wall hanging Pavement Fragment made with burned layered silk with cotton, paint and printing.
Rozanne Hawksley's black gauntlet holding a mirror is exhibited face upward in a frame with a title from the Office of the Dead: "Deliver me 0 Lord From Eternal Death". Since becoming a Catholic 20 years ago she has become even more acutely aware of a failure to face up to death.
During the Falklands War Rozanne Hawksley made Sir Galahad a handless and legless figure on a cross. For the Gulf War she produced a "Brize Norton" installation of 17 shroud crosses representing young bodies send home in bags.
Future work promises to be just as powerful. It is not only death which makes her angry. "I am very angry," she says, "I think there should be a woman in the Vatican".
• Relationships is the theme of a joint Christian Arts/Society of Catholic Artists exhibition in the Crypt Gallery at St George's Church, Bloomsbury (daily until Thursday; free).