Next week, billboards across London will be covered with new artwork created by U.K.’s young and emerging artists. Following an open call by the Tate Collective, Tate’s membership scheme for 16 to 25 year olds, members submitted their own works in response to seven artworks in the museum’s collection. In the end, 48 works were chosen out of over 800 that reflect the vibrancy and diversity of the city. The public will be able to view selected entries alongside the works that inspired them across seven billboards in Camden, Hackney, Haringey, Islington, Lambeth, Southwark and Walthamstow.
All featured works respond to pieces from Tate’s collection, including Wassily Kandinsky’s Swinging (1925), Ibrahim El-Salahi’s Reborn Sounds of Childhood Dreams I (1961–5), Guerrilla Girls from Guerrilla Girls Talk Back, Dearest Art Collector (1986), Sir John Everett Millais’ Ophelia (1851-52), among others. The project follows other ongoing public art initiatives around the world, like Plywood Project and Artist Rights Society’s open-source database of all protest and street art from demonstrations against police brutality and racial injustice.
“As a young creative & someone who graduated through a global pandemic, I am very proud and excited for this opportunity to showcase my work across London,” said artist Urja Jain. “While the current pandemic has thrown our lives into disarray and chaos, uncertainty & disappointment have become a part of our daily routine. But unlike Ophelia who drowned in despair, this is an ode to the class of 2020, as we all try our best to stay afloat while the current pulls us down.”
Check out mock-ups of the billboards in situ in the images above and head to Tate’s website for full details of the featured artworks. The initiative will kick off on August 10 and run for two weeks.