Steve Mehdi, sculptor and creator of Man of Steel, is the latest artist to lend his support to Gallery Town, an ambitious project aiming to rejuvenate Rotherham’s town centre through the arts.
The open air gallery, founded by the Chair of the Rotherham Economy Board, Nick Cragg, has been developed through a partnership between public and private sectors. It aims to attract more people into the town centre by displaying 100 pieces of art on the sides of buildings in 60 different locations around the town.
Steve is thrilled to become a board member on the project which plans to put Rotherham at the heart of Yorkshire’s art scene. “I was invited to join Gallery Town by its founder, Nick Cragg. His passion for art and culture, combined with a philanthropic flair has been used to great effect by creating Gallery Town and bringing art to the masses, as well as getting them to produce their own.”
While strolling around Rotherham town centre, visitors can find works from famous names such as Leonardo Da Vinci and Vincent Van Gough as well as local artists including Sara Platt, Michael Latimer and Daniel Barnett. Gallery Town has also been working closely with local schoolchildren on art projects and workshops including interactive graffiti, fake shop fronts and urban piano decorating.
To promote the project Steve will be using his wealth of experience to generate new ideas involving future collaborative sculpture projects in Rotherham. “I was asked to explore new ways we can engage other artists and the community to make art accessible to everyone. One of the ideas we are currently exploring is lighting up certain buildings. This is popular in many cities and can add interest for residents and visitors to Rotherham without costing a fortune.”
Assistant Economic Development Officer of Gallery Town, Vicki Norman, says: “We are very pleased to welcome Steve to the Gallery Town board as we feel his artistic input will enhance the project.”
There are plans for a scale model of Man of Steel, as well as other pieces of Steve’s work, to be exhibited during the project. The final 20m stainless steel sculpture, in between Rotherham and Sheffield, will sit on top of an 18m column containing an observation deck, education centre and shop.
“Ultimately the Yorkshire Man of Steel is about the sons and daughters of Rotherham; past, present and future,” says Steve. “It’s also about the wider region, its heritage of steel and coal and perhaps more importantly it’s about the recent advances in the new technology sector. The Yorkshire Man of Steel will become a destination for visitors, adding significant economic and cultural capital to the region.”
Written by Content On Demand