Canary Wharf’s public art collection just got bigger to fill the Covid ‘gap’

Published Nov 2020

Public art on show throughout Canary Wharf is being expanded with six new pieces to create an “open air gallery” while its non-essential shops and bars stay shut during the Covid lockdown.

The growing portfolio of 75 permanent works by 50 world-renowned artists is already one of the largest collections in the country of public art on display in open spaces.

The additions include a newly-acquired Scribbleform by Julian Wild, 30 feet in stunning red and weighing three tonnes. Other new works include Tandem Lovers sculpture by Gillie & Marc, sort of “let the dog see the rabbit” as they rise off into the sunset.

Also being added to thew collection is the 12ft long bronze Metamorphosis commissioned sculpture by Helaine Blumenfeld, joining her previously commissioned Fortuna from 2016 that’s in Jubilee Park.

“It is important that our public art is accessible in these difficult times,” Canary Wharf Group chairman Sir George Iacobescu said. “We have added pieces to our outdoor sculpture and installations to ensure people enjoy the works of some of the best British and international artists.”

Contemporary street artist Camille Walala’s transformation of Adams Plaza Bridge has also been absorbed into the permanent art collection after its debut at the inaugural London Mural Festival back in the summer.

The non-essential shops are due to reopen at Canary Wharf in-line with government guidance on December 2. The art trail now being expanded is aimed at filling the gap meanwhile to keep public interest in the district that is a magnate for shoppers and revellers in normal times.