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Artist in Residence appointed for Smithfield transformation

Larry Achiampong to work with Hawkins\Brown design team on major redevelopment of Smithfield public realm

As Artist in Residence, Achiampong will help Hawkins\Brown realise the City’s vision for the Culture Mile, conducting his own research into the area to create a unique response that will inform the permanent design of the civic spaces of Smithfield. His work will focus particularly on engagement with Black youth and elders in the City and adjacent boroughs to encourage wider representation and new narratives within the design process.

In January 2020, the City of London Corporation selected a multidisciplinary design team led by Hawkins\Brown – and comprised of landscape architects OKRA, Contemporary Art Society, transport consultant Momentum, and lighting designers Studio Dekka – to draw up proposals for the transformation of the public realm in Smithfield.

These proposals will respond to and anticipate the major changes in the area – such as the opening of the Elizabeth Line at Farringdon and the relocation of the Museum of London to former market buildings in the area – to create an exciting, welcoming new destination within the Culture Mile.

Our vision is to unify Smithfield’s multiple histories and contemporary cultures into a place for all Londoners. Larry Achiampong as Artist in Residence will be a crucial element of our ‘multiple perspectives, multiple hands’ design approach that centres on co-authorship and co-curation. Through careful excavation, repair and design, this will be a new chapter in Smithfield’s continuing legacy, providing a characterful public realm full of distinct yet complementary functions, and demonstrating Smithfield’s often conflicting, brutal and hidden history

Emerging designs for the Smithfield public realm seek to celebrate the history of the area, increase planting and greenery, incorporate a ‘Healthy Streets’ approach that prioritises people over vehicles, provide facilities for cultural activity and support a diverse range of local communities and businesses.

Working closely with Culture Mile partners, Hawkins\Brown’s first phase plans for the area will be realised by 2024 to coincide with the scheduled opening of the new Museum of London.

Culture Mile is led by the City of London Corporation together with the Barbican, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, London Symphony Orchestra, and the Museum of London. They will also support the delivery of the City Transport Strategy and the new Climate Action Strategy.

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