Posts

‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ Street Art

‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ is new wall art installation in Wimbledon Town Centre, created by Love Wimbledon, in collaboration with artist Louis Masai and local photographer and culture campaigner Cindy Sasha. This piece aims to raise awareness of the decline of British birds in London, particularly the House Sparrow, renowned for its birdsong and seen as a vital part of urban life.

Brought to life by a London-based artist, often best known for his dynamic and inspiring wall murals of endangered animals, ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ features a male house sparrow and female house sparrow inferring the question of ‘where has the sparrow song gone’. Based on the hit single ‘It’s Oh So Quiet’ by Icelandic musician Björk, the art reflects how birdsong has reduced over time, due to the population decline of this bird species.

The disappearance of birdsong could have a profound impact on human health. The natural sounds of birdsong have been linked to improved mental and emotional health amongst humans. Hearing birdsong allows us to connect with the natural world and can be the perfect antidote to the pressures of modern life.

According to The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (RSPB), there is a severe decline in the UK house sparrow population, estimated as dropping by 71 per cent since 1977. This has led to the RSPB now red-listing House Sparrows as a species of high conservation concern.

Rather than adopting the newer patchwork style, seen in much of Louis Masai’s more recent work, the artist drew on a more realistic, older style of painting to embody the central message of this piece – the critical situation facing British birdlife. Louis Masai is a London-based painter, sculptor and street artist, who uses his art in the form of murals, paintings and installations to highlight and initiate discussion surrounding climate change, endangerment of species, conservation and species equality.

Wimbledon has seen a renaissance in cultural experiences ranging from music, theatres, art galleries and literary festivals. It is a place where there is often more than what meets the eye. As said by Cindy Sasha, “street art can change a landscape of a town centre. I love it when the love spreads through art and sends such a positive message – we need more of it!”. Love Wimbledon create and fund a variety of cultural and environmental notions including the first rainbow pedestrian crossing in the UK, in partnership with Merton Council, to show support to the LGBTQ community in Wimbledon Town Centre. Find out more here.

 

“This collaboration has brought an important message to Wimbledon, whilst also developing a stronger and more vivid cultural strategy for visitors to experience the town centre. The art is impactful, meaningful and has had a positive response from business, visitors and local residents. We were pleased to hear we have a crew of House Sparrows in Wimbledon Town Centre – something to be truly celebrated.”

Sally Warren, Love Wimbledon

 

Find this new street art piece on Alwyne Road, off Wimbledon Hill Road, in Wimbledon Town Centre, and help to spread this message. Watch the public reaction to the art.

 

Get Booked for Autumn!

Wimbledon Bookfest, Merton Arts Festival, and Wimbledon International Music Festival all have a host of performances, images, talks and exhibitions happening in Wimbledon Town Centre this Autumn.

Tickets are now on sale for:

Wimbledon Bookfest Launch Event sponsored by Love Wimbledon with best selling author Joanne Harris, writer of The Strawberry Thief. Taking place in Merton Arts Space (in Wimbledon library) on the evening of the 3rd of October. Meet the Love Wimbledon team before the event and enjoy a complimentary welcome drink. Tickets available here

Wimbledon International Music Festival taking place throughout November. Catch some mash up music with acclaimed Vivaldi meets Finnish Rock, Tosca Regents Opera and the Festival Finale taking place at Trinity Church, SW19 4AA. Find out more and purchase your tickets here

Merton Arts Festival. The ALL FREE art trail to enjoy in Wimbledon and Merton. Taking place over the two last weekends in September, read all about the trail here.

And don’t forget our Arts and Crafts Market on The Piazza on Saturday 21 and Sunday 22 September. Enjoy FREE activities and shop from an array of original and hand crafted work from hand picked local artists and designers. Find out more here.    

 

Wimbledon Rainbow – Culture at its most vibrant!

A new rainbow crossing has landed in Wimbledon to celebrate the town’s inclusivity, welcome its first LGBT+ bar, and support this year’s Pride in London events.
Love Wimbledon BID, worked with Merton Council to install a Rainbow Crossing in Wimbledon Broadway next to New Wimbledon Theatre and the recently opened CMYK bar. The multi-coloured crossing has been created in the design of the Rainbow Flag – which has been adopted, across the globe, as a symbol to celebrate the LGBT+ community and its diversity. The crossing aims to delight and bring a smile to everyone using it, whilst sending out the Welcome to Wimbledon message.

Helen Clark Bell, the Chief Executive of the Love Wimbledon bid, said: “The bright, beaming rainbow that has landed on Wimbledon Broadway celebrates Wimbledon’s new LGBTQ bar which is a beacon of the town centre’s inclusive community. Building a sense of pride in Wimbledon has been a key objective for Love Wimbledon. What better way to celebrate this than to have a rainbow pedestrian crossing installed outside CMYK, the first LGBTQ Bar in Wimbledon.”

Cabinet Member for Women and Equalities, Councillor Laxmi Attawar said: “We are really proud to have created a Rainbow Crossing in our borough to show a blaze of colourful support for members of the LGBT+ community. We want to extend a warm welcome to the CMYK bar which is a wonderful addition to the diverse cultural offer we have in Merton.

Patrick Lyster-Todd, Secretary of Merton LGBT+ Forum, said, “This is an amazing and symbolic undertaking by the London Borough of Merton, not just to mark this year’s Pride in London but also the opening of Wimbledon’s first LGBT+ bar and club, right at its centre. I have been there several times already and it is the most welcoming, fun and safe place for all, with marvellous staff – but our local LGBT+ community must now rally around and support it wholeheartedly so that it becomes a vibrant new home for all of us.”

Charlie Walker the General Manager at the CMYK bar, said he and his staff are delighted with the welcome they have received in Wimbledon. He said: “There is only one happiness in this life, to love and be loved.”