After an ‘only woman artists’ call, brook & black were appointed to design an interactive, permanent public artwork as a centenary celebration in Crystal Palace Park, as it was here, in 1909 that the Guide movement began. This work has been designed to be part of the London Development Agency Masterplan of Crystal Palace Park.
The work was to appeal to all ages, to attract not just the local community but national and international visitors and to include local community consultation. Through a process of meetings and over two hundred participants at brook & black art workshops with local Guiding Units and environmental groups, the artists arrived at a design to fully refurbish the maze and surrounding landscaping which was approved by Girlguiding UK, the London Development Agency and the London Borough of Bromley.
The artwork is located both within the restored hedge maze and at the central arrival point, and incorporates brass plaques (for brass rubbings of flora and fauna images), small stone monoliths with engraved designs located in the hedge pathways, a central text design and a nine metre wide, two-dimensional two-tone floor work duplicating the footprint of the maze. In addition there is new granite seating and surrounding landscaping with the planting of new trees and hedges.
Working in partnership with Girlguiding UK, the London Borough of Bromley, the London Development Agency, J&L Gibbons Ltd and Oxford Stone & Marble Ltd, the complex two -ton work, black and white granite artwork and planting was installed for the launch that took place in September 2010. More than 6,000 members of Girlguiding UK were present and it continues to be well visited and enjoyed by visitors to the park, members of the local community and Girlguiding UK.
Commissioning agent: Girlguiding UK
Landscape Architect: J&L Gibbons Ltd and LDA
Developer: London Development Agency
Construction: Oxford Stone & Marble Ltd
Budget: Total 65K
Photos: brook & black
Acknowledgments: The artists acknowledge the wonderful work of Jo Gibbons and Oxford Stone & Marble. Jo with her considerable plant and landscaping knowledge and skills and the stone masons at Oxford who both translated the design so carefully and installed the work so beautifully. Of course also, making art with over two hundred guides during the consultation phase was a real treat.
Further info/ web links to GG UK