WIP concepts created for the Metro Art Track public exhibition 2022 in Dudley. The proposed large-scale vinyl artwork installation is to be applied to the windows of the forthcoming Interchange building in the town centre, enlivening the built environment and creating a sense of joy and belonging for the community.
I wanted to create a completely unexpected piece of art that would challenge people's preconceptions of Dudley and expose the hidden depths of the wider Black Country region. To this end, I took inspiration from Peacock Coal; not a specific class of coal, but rather the name for an effect in which oxidizing materials within Anthracite Coal - found in Dudley's deepest mines - create a dazzling array of colours on its surface. Who would have thought coal could be so colourful?
Reflected within the shapes of the coal are patterns and motifs that are specific to Dudley's heritage and culture. The community would be involved in co-designing these elements, helping to connect the artwork to the lives and legacies of real people.
The array of unexpectedly vibrant colours found in Peacock Coal reflects the equally vibrant culture and heritage of Dudley and the wider Black Country area which the new metro line will run through.
The installation could be adapted to the various metro stops throughout the metro line also. Nearby communities could contribute their own images to the array, creating a deeper sense of belonging and shared ownership.