Brighton Kiss Wall artist Bruce Williams to create public art at Edward Street Quarter
The award-winning artist behind Brighton’s iconic Kiss Wall has been chosen to create public art at the city’s newest neighbourhood Edward Street Quarter.
Bruce’s piece will draw on the area’s historic links with the fishing industry and it looks set to be installed at the end of this year.
His work will appear in a central square and will feature a fishing net with designs and stories inspired by a community consultation which is uncovering residents’ memories of the area.
The Brighton artist’s installations have appeared in locations across the UK, from Belfast to Birmingham and now his beautiful work will feature in his home city once again.
Brighton designer Richard Wolfstrome, who has been helping Edward Street Quarter to find the best talent to deliver public art, said:
“We’re so pleased that Bruce is part of our team of artists. His famous Kiss Wall, installed on the seafront in 1992, was nominated for the Working for Cities national public art award run by the Arts Council for England and British Gas, so we can’t wait to see the attention his next piece receives.
“A consultation, led by Kemptown artists Daniel Locke and Hannah Chater, is taking place this summer, which will feed into his designs, making this artwork truly part of its local community. This ‘fishing net’ piece will work in perfect harmony with Cosmo Sarson’s 10m high mural of Neptune, the Roman god of the sea.”
Artists Daniel Locke and Hannah Chater have held creative workshops at local schools and groups, such as Carlton Hill Primary School and Brighton Fishing Museum, as well as individual meetings with local residents to collect their memories of the area.
Memories so far have shed light on how much the area has changed. One resident remembers Edward Street being lined with shops in the 1970s and another recalled the Black Dove pub in the 1960s which was then a doctors’ surgery.
Steve Eccles, Project Director at First Base, commented:
“The public art we are providing will create beautiful places to stop and spend time, as well as connecting Brighton’s newest neighbourhood with its heritage. We’re so grateful to the local residents to have taken the time to be part of the creative process that will go into this piece and we’re delighted to have an artist of Bruce’s calibre on our team.
“The scale and quality of the work being delivered by our artists will put Edward Street Quarter on the tourist trail for visitors too as we build on Brighton’s reputation for public art.”
Edward Street Quarter comprises 125,000 sq ft of flexible space for Brighton’s digital and creative sectors, as well as the wider business community, making it the largest provision of workspace to be delivered in the city since 1993.
In total 20,000 sq ft is set aside for retailers, leisure and hospitality and 168 new homes are available, including a mix of private and affordable units to meet local demand.
The development features three public green spaces, heavily planted with mature trees and an edible garden full of herbs.