Local heroes celebrated in Laurieston art installation
A total of 16 local legends from Laurieston in Glasgow were commemorated in a unique art installation which was unveiled at the Laurieston Arena on Saturday.
Commissioned by local regeneration firm Urban Union, award-winning art organisation WAVEparticle has created a series of bespoke artworks celebrating community figures who have made notable contributions to the local area.
Over the summer the community was asked to nominate members of the local residents who have inspired them and 16 people were selected from a shortlist of remarkable nominee stories.
Among the selected nominees are community leaders who have dedicated their care and service to the area, including local teacher Elinor McCabe who has educated generations of children in the Gorbals; Jamie Reid, who intervened to prevent someone he didn’t know from taking their own life and Sulaiman Musisi, the security guard at the local Co-op who greets every shopper with a smile.
Each nominee was then photographed individually and a large two and a half metre portrait was made. Printed on metal and arranged in a circle facing one another, the eye-catching artwork will be seen day and night by residents and visitors to Urban Union’s Laurieston Living development.
Peter McCaughey, lead artist of WAVEparticle, said: “We wanted to make a work that celebrates the extraordinary in the everyday. We entrusted our great friend Basharat Khan with the job of capturing an engaging portrait of each person, so that we could build an installation of 16 large-scale photographs facing each other in a circle, creating a concatenation, a suggestion of a community of people, strong and diverse individually and stronger again in close connection with each other.
“We believe resilience is all around us, evident in the everyday acts of goodness shown in strong communities like the Gorbals and Laurieston, we also believe that if regeneration means anything it has to begin with, and end with, a focus on people.”
Neil McKay, managing director at Urban Union, added: “Working with WAVEparticle to deliver this art installation in the heart of the Laurieston community has been a fantastic opportunity for us to say thank you to the amazing people living in the area who consistently go above and beyond to make it a better place to live.
“Each nominee’s story is inspiring and shows that people really do make Glasgow, especially at such a local level. The Living Legends installation encapsulates what the art strategy is about, using art as a means to express our gratitude to the community. We can’t wait to see the full exhibition come Saturday.”
Laurieston Living is currently delivering its second phase, which will see 173 homes and apartments delivered. The development recently won in the Excellence in Regeneration category at the CIH Scotland Excellence Awards.