Crossrail Ltd has appointed Julie Leonard as its official artist-in-residence, with a commission to create a pictorial diary of Crossrail’s construction.
The London-based painter, printmaker and ‘digital artist’ will use an app on her smart phone to create digital and animated drawings.
Working in and around the construction sites, she will provide a narrative of the project, incorporating anecdotes from the workforce and communities living and working along the route.
Julie Leonard said: “I look forward to creating a body of work that will form a unique archive and visual legacy of places that people rarely see. My digital pieces will be an accessible, versatile and instant way to capture the challenges of building Crossrail. I hope the art will bring together the people working on Crossrail from the bottom up and those who will eventually use it. I see it as an opportunity to engage in the creative process, transfer my excitement about Crossrail and get young people working with me and learning about the project first hand.”
In a separate but related initiative, Crossrail is also implementing a permanent exhibition of large-scale art works across seven London Crossrail stations, designed in collaboration with London’s leading art galleries.
Crossrail chairman Terry Morgan said: “We want Crossrail to enhance London’s reputation as one of the world’s great cultural and artistic capitals. We have embedded culture into the heart of Crossrail’s design and delivery because it is crucial to nurture the best creative minds, as well as the best commercial ones. We welcome Julie Leonard and look forward to her art, which has a humorous and creative take on everyday situations. Her art will help highlight for the public the huge level of activity underway behind Crossrail’s hoardings.”