30 September 2020
LONDON, UK: London’s fruit, veg and flower wholesale market, New Covent Garden is pleased to announce that a new artwork has been installed on the Nine Elms Lane facade of its Flower Market this week, as part of the annual Vitrine Art Commission.
Now into its second year, the Vitrine Art Commission is a three-year public art initiative funded by St. Modwen in association with Covent Garden Market Authority (CGMA) and Art Night, London’s largest contemporary arts festival. The aim is to promote and nurture emerging artists, working within photography, painting, text, illustration and other two-dimensional mediums.
Created by south-east London based BLKbrd Collective, this year’s winner is a celebratory mural of the market and its integral workers, highlighting the importance of the fruit, vegetable and floral industries that keep London running.
BLKbrd Collective’s more recent work has been used by news organisations to illustrate and celebrate key workers on the frontline of the Covid-19 pandemic. Bloom! will be on display until October 2021.
“In celebration of the unique productivity and history of New Covent Garden Market, ‘Bloom!’ is a window taking you behind the scenes of one of south London’s most vibrant environments,” says the BLKbrd Collective’s Tasnim Mahdy. “Building on our ‘Stay Strong Route’ project through which we sought to publicly celebrate essential workers during the 2020 pandemic, BLKbrd Collective wanted to characterise and illustrate the Nine Elms’ workers and community in vivid colour.”
“We’re highlighting the fundamental fact that our traders are essential key workers,” says Jo Breare, General Manager, CGMA. “This artwork is current at a time when we are all much more reflective on what it means to be a key worker and those things that are most important in our lives.”
This year saw an all-time high in submissions, as more than 230 artists from around the world competed for the opportunity to design the artwork, inspired by the fresh produce that New Covent Garden Market is famous for alongside the market’s physical context and communities.
“More than ever it’s important to harness the benefits of community spirit, celebrate the richness of the arts and celebrate the diversity of our society,” says St Modwen’s Rob Williams. “This art installation does all of those things and we are proud to be backing this important local project for another year.”
Pictured above left to right: the BLKbrd Collective’s Sondos Mahdy, Dean Bowen and Tasnim Mahdy, with CGMA’s Garin Auld and St. Modwen’s Joe Vere-Bujnowski. Photo by Christa Holka.