Vibrant community-inspired artworks to prepare for growth
FrancisKnight were appointed to work on Wivelsfield Railway Station Bridge, a Public Art Commission and Lighting Scheme. A feasibility report was produced, with recommendations for commissioning public art, updating and improving lighting and cleaning and repainting existing areas.
As part of the public art commissioning process, artists Maria Amidu and Lionel Stanhope were selected to collaborate on a series of artworks that were painted onto the four abutments at Wivelsfield Station Bridge.
Throughout the Covid19 Lockdown, Maria developed ideas for the painted artworks with input from locally based The World’s End Association and pupils from the Manor Field Primary School. A 2D rendering of a blue plaque was then produced by trained sign writer, and scenic/street artist Lionel, who has worked with Network Rail over the past 7 years on more than 50 bridge murals.
Maria commented: “Developing ideas for the commission with the input of school children and residents was a delight; because of the lockdown I invited them to take me on a virtual tour and introduce me to the places they love. The things I have learnt from afar have been really interesting, and the fact Wivelsfield Station is actually in Worlds End, causing visitors a great deal of confusion over the years is the catalyst for ideas developed for the commission, along with suggestions for a Worlds End motto.”
The resulting artworks express the thoughts of the community with motto’s ‘our friendly community’ and ‘because neighbourhood counts’. The designs feature the children’s own work, focusing on the colour and the style of their mark making – pencil, felt tips, paint with a composite of letters from their designs. Renowned cricketer Maurice Tate also features, as members of the Residents’ Association had wanted to honour him in a tangible way in the area for some time.