The joy of colour
To support the city’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, Worcester City Council, Worcester BID and Severn Arts jointly commissioned artists to create engaging designs to bring new life to the frontages of empty retail units.
Cherrie and Richard were commissioned to create bespoke designs for five vacant shop windows in one of the city’s most striking buildings, the former Hop Market Hotel on Foregate Street.
Built at the beginning of the 20th century, this former hotel is one of Worcester’s most iconic buildings. It stands as a monument to the prosperity of the city at the turn of the century and the importance of hops to Worcester’s commercial life.
Like many city centre shops, part of the building at 16 Foregate Street currently stands vacant. In its recent past it has hosted pop-up art galleries, which Cherrie and other Worcestershire Open Studios artists have participated in.
In response to the project brief, Cherrie created several ‘thrown’ paintings using a colour palette designed to evoke feelings of joy, optimism and positivity. These vibrant works were created in an energetic style somewhat akin to that of the American abstract expressionist Jackson Pollock.
The resulting paintings are jam-packed with colour, texture and depth. Cherrie says “Although I had little control over how the paint landed or what the finished pieces looked like, the resulting contours of colour and undulating textures are a source of excitement and pleasure.”
Once the paintings were finished, Richard captured a series of extracts from each piece using macro photography. Extracts are enlarged images of small details from the original artworks, They are derived, in a sense, from accidental art or self-appropriation; the art being in the selection of the extracts.
The magnification process reveals an incredible amount of intricate and fascinating detail that isn’t always apparent on initial viewing of the whole piece.
Cherrie and Richard whittled 40 extracts down to just five that Richard turned into print-ready files. The designs were then printed at large scale onto vinyl by Universal Banners.