Art of London, a new cultural initiative for the West End, and the Royal Academy of Arts have collaborated on a unique and accessible art takeover for the Piccadilly area, seeing the global destination transformed into a canvas for one of the biggest public art takeovers the capital has ever seen.
From 21 July - 31 August 2021, the area around Piccadilly will be transformed by 30 overhanging flags, 13 pedestrian crossings (the largest ever number of art crossings to take place in one area), as well as regular takeovers of the 780 sqm Piccadilly Lights. Audiences will be able to access and participate in a special Augmented Reality 10-screen experience and audio sync via their mobile phones. This will be the first time this technology has been used on the iconic landmark.
Five artists associated with the Royal Academy, Michael Armitage, Vanessa Jackson RA, Isaac Julien CBE RA, Farshid Moussavi OBE RA and Yinka Shonibare CBE RA have been carefully selected to transform the area and to welcome people back to the West End after the COVID-19 lockdown period. The artists involved were allocated a specific area to design, where they could choose to repurpose an existing artwork or create something completely new. Michael Armitage, Farshid Moussavi OBE RA and Yinka Shonibare CBE RA have designed the art for 30 hanging flags positioned along the famous cultural hub of Piccadilly.
All three artists have very distinct and different backgrounds and mediums, yet their chosen pieces work in harmony together, with the tones, shapes and designs complementing one another in a celebratory sequence of colour. The hanging flags will be on display at the same time as Michael Armitage’s exhibition, Paradise Edict, at the Royal Academy. Yinka Shonibare is also the coordinator for this year’s annual and 253rd Summer Exhibition at the Royal Academy, which will open in September 2021.
The Piccadilly Art Takeover, in partnership with the Royal Academy of Arts and Art of London, runs from the 21 July - 31 August 2021. Visit the website for further details on their season of public art.
‘The Piccadilly Art Takeover’ is a unique partnership between the Royal Academy of Arts and Art of London, a new cultural initiative from Heart of London Business Alliance (HOLBA), supported by Sky Arts, Piccadilly Lights, Westminster City Council and the Mayor of London.