The UK’s tallest piece of public art has appeared on the side of a condemned council estate in West London. The renowned street artist Stik has completed the work of street art; a 125-foot mural covering the side façade of a soon-to-be demolished council house in the London area of Acton. The enormous work is “aimed at raising awareness about the lack of social housing in the area,” the Independent reports.
The piece, entitled ‘Big Mother’, depicts a mother and child in Stik’s signature stickman drawing style. It took a year of planning and one month of painting to execute, much of which Stik spent perched on a crane, 38 meters (125 feet) above the ground. The work depicts a mother and child looking down from their condemned council estate at the luxury apartments being built in the area that surrounds them.
“The mother and child symbol are a representation of the families that live in this block,” Stik told the Independent. “The figures that I have painted are looking down sadly at their neighbourhood which is being developed with luxury apartments and this building is being demolished. While I am drawing on the wall; my role as an artist is to draw from society and social issues, and try to depict what is going on. “
Charles Hocking House, the building used for Stik’s monumental street piece, was completed in 1969 with the aim of providing affordable housing for families in the area. However, Ealing council has now decided to demolish the building.
Rachel Pepper, Project Manager for Acton Arts Forum, told the Independent: “We are really excited that Stik has jumped on board with this local artwork.”
The mural can be viewed from across west London, and is even visible from planes departing and arriving at Heathrow Airport. “It’s great that as people arrive in the country they can see the mother and child looking across the expanse of private development,” the artist remarked.“I’m trying to articulate the voice of the people in a stylised way to the world.”
Stik painted Big Mother for free, as part of a project “to get local street artists to brighten up the area,” explained Rachel Pepper, project manager for Acton Arts Forum tp the independent. “There are some dark and dingy parts on the estate and we now have about 15 or 16 pieces of artwork that people come to see especially”.