Stories Behind The Art: Iron Age Londoners

September 4th, 2019

The Brandon Estate in Kennington Park was in desperate need of some care and attention after it had spent years at the mercy of spray paint and graffiti. Local residents felt that the 60m stretch of wall surrounding Kennington Park represented the bygone days of gang culture and violence, a time the community were keen to leave behind. 

Brewers Decorator Centres in association with local group Bee Urban undertook an ambitious community scheme alongside the Brandon Tenants Residents Association to restore the community’s spirit and unity by painting a massive mural along a 60m wall, making it one of London’s longest murals.

Brewers Peckham store manager Jimmy Thomson was delighted to help by donating over 150 litres of Albany Paint to the community project. The Peckham store were blown away by the enthusiasm of Bee Urban’s Barnaby Shaw as his team strove to overcome the negative image created about the estate, seeking instead to highlight a very different message.

This is the second contribution by the students of John Ruskin, who composed and painted the entire section. 

They were so inspired by the Iron Age that they were studying in their history class that they chose to depict it on the wall. The students wanted to paint two Iron Age Londoners, one playing the harp and the other casting a sword to represent two of the key practises of the era. Lurking In the background the students painted Big Ben and the London Eye to represent end of the Iron Age and the transition to the Roman Empire, establishing the city of London in 50AD. 

The students also wanted to include their important four legged friend in the mural who was a crucial member of their team!  This dog belongs to one of the local artists who helped paint so many of the sections of the wall, turning up almost every day to boost morale and keep spirits high!