Connecting the Community Through Artistic Expression

June 15th, 2023

Brewers were honoured to be able to provide masonry paint to the Black Icons Project as a part of the Brockley Max Festival 2023.

The Brockley Max Festival was from the 2nd to the 10th of June, where there were 9 days of over 70 events from live music, theatre and art to comedy, poetry nights and workshops.

Max Media Arts has received funding from the Mayor of London’s Untold Stories fund - part of his Commission for Diversity in the Public Realm, telling untold stories of many admirable figures within the city. The £1m Untold Stories programme aims to champion diversity in the capital’s public spaces and ensure London’s landmarks and monuments reflect the achievements of all who have contributed to the success of the city. The grants offer Londoners the opportunity to develop ideas and share their stories which will be represented within the public realm.  

As a part of the festival, the Black Icons Project consisted of the local community selecting 4 inspirational black women who would become the focus of 3 murals. Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah Mavis Best and Kristins and Sadé Alleyne were selected by members of the public and steering committee for their incredible and aspirational work. The steering committee consisted of a wide range of women with backgrounds in the arts, culture, media and research who selected the 4 women from a list of 14 incredible people the local community had put forward.

The project’s steering committee said: 

Rosamund Adoo-Kissi-Debrah received the most votes from the public and it is no surprise as her tireless work campaigning to introduce the Clean Air (Human Rights) Bill - or "Ella's law", named after her daughter, who died 10 years ago this year from the effects of pollution. Her campaigning will save thousands of lives and a mural is a testament to both Rosamund and Ella.

Mavis Best’s work of fighting racist policing and other discrimination spanned 50 years and even though she received an MBE in 2002, is relatively unknown. She was instrumental in having the infamous “Sus” laws scrapped; the committee felt that her incredible years of activism and work to change the law which helped hundreds of young people, fits the Untold stories brief.

Kristina and Sadé Alleyne are both women invested in the arts in Lewisham, from teaching children at the Albany & hip-hop at Lewisham Fire station, to students at Lewisham College, Trinity Laban and Goldsmiths. The quality of their work is recognised internationally, and the committee felt that they represented both the incredible art and culture in Lewisham and being young, represented the future of what black women can achieve. 

3 incredibly talented artists, Jelly, Roxanne Williams and Amanda Graham spent several days painting the murals in their own artistic style whilst paying homage to the lives and works of the women they were painting. 

We were thrilled to be able to visit the murals in Brockley and share in the excitement of this fantastic new collection of accessible street art. To find out more about the project, please click here>>