Who? The Wallfower Project is a collective of local artists (known as LOCI) under the Direction of mural specialist Dr Jody Patterson (Associate Professor, Art History, Plymouth University). The Project will create the largest public outdoor mural Plymouth has seen in decades. The 10 x 15 metre mural will be painted in Royal William Yard and takes inspiration from the rich naval history of 'Britian's Ocean City'. The mural, titled The Seafarer - The Eager of Spirit, the Heart to Travel, is the first in a series for The Wallflower Project, which will see murals painted in different locations across the city. The LOCI artists - Llyr Davies, Francesca Hawkesworth, Andrew Meredith, Joe Allen and Kieran Walsh - are Fine Art graduates of Plymouth University based in the city. The artists have collaborated together in the past, most recently transforming the Yard's empty Slaughterhouse building to host an exhibition showcasing Plymouth’s emerging artistic community.
The Wallflower Project benefits from the generosity of local partners and businesses (Plymouth University, Urban Splash, Plymouth Culture, Fotonow, Ocean Studios, Clockwork Audio, Blend Decorating) in their sharing of knowledge, labour, and support. The project seeks to develop skills within the community and improve shared, public spaces. The Wallflower Project emphasises inclusivity and inter-generational collaboration, involving local Residents' Associations and the participation of volunteer groups and schools.
What? The Wallflower Project will design and paint public murals on walls across the city in the run-up to Mayflower 2020 celebrations. The year 2020 marks the 400th anniversary of the Pilgrims setting sail from Plymouth to America, to be marked through a range of public events and commissions. The Seafarer will be the first public mural to be executed by The Wallflower Project and will begin in August 2017 . With the Mayflower in mind, the design for the wall is rich in references to sea travel, navigation and the city’s own ocean sights. Subsequent murals will explore aspects of Plymouth's rich history with the goal of bringing art to new audiences outside gallery spaces; encouraing wide interest in local heritage; generating and contributing to civic pride; and furthering the city’s burgeoning identity as a centre for arts and culture. As the Mayflower anniversary will bring international attention to Plymouth, the public murals will showcase the city, its people, and their history, and also promote creative talents developing within the city.
Where? The first mural will cover the external wall of the Warehouse in the courtyard of the Cooperage Building, Royal William Yard. The Warehouse has become a venue for creative activity, such as the Yard's annual Music Festival and Bard in the Yard theatre. The Yard itself is steeped in history and was used in the 19th and 20th centuries as a storage and trading base for the Navy. The mural is part of the broader cultural regeneration of the Yard and surrounding Stonehouse neighnourhood, now a destination for Plymouthians and tourists alike. The Yard has become a vibrant cultural hub for the city, offering art studios for Plymouth University Fine Art students, artists' spaces, galleries (including KARST artist-led exhibition and project space up the road), markets, open-air film scrennings, alongside cafés, restaurants, retail spaces, and offices.
Why? The Wallflower Project is an important initiative for Plymouth's shared spaces and wider cultural environment. The city is a trailblazer in the South West, with artists and creative organisations flourishing. Public murals will improve urban spaces and increase access to culture as part of everyday experience. The Wallflower Project offers a unique and valuable opportunity for emerging artists to collaborate with diverse local communities. Your support and participation are essential to the realisation of The Wallflower Project.
Through initial support from Plymouth University, the site has been secured, a mural design has been drafted, and the scaffolding is in place. Your donations will be used to execute the mural: including repairs and preparation of the wall (priming, damp-proofing) and paint and materials. With your help, we will launch The Wallflower Project and unveil the first mural in mid-September. You can come down to the site, talk to the artists, and watch your donation at work.
For donations of £50, you will receive a Wallflower Project 2020 Tote Bag or a T-Shirt; donations of £100 will receive both. For donations of £200 or more, you will receive a Tote Bag, T-Shirt and an Original Signed Artwork from one of the participating artists.