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Sound scheme links to East End seats of learning

PUBLISHED: 18:39 19 June 2008 | UPDATED: 13:22 05 October 2010

SLATE benches carved with quotes from shoppers and residents reflecting the identity and culturally diversity’ of Shadwell is being unveiled in the East End’s newest public space. A series of six benches named Shadwell Soundwaves is being unveiled to create a focal point in Watney Plaza, a new development of 59 homes

SLATE benches carved with quotes from shoppers and residents reflecting 'the identity and culturally diversity' of Shadwell is being unveiled in the East End's newest public space.

A series of six benches named Shadwell Soundwaves is being unveiled to create a focal point in Watney Plaza, a new development of 59 homes.

The project began last year when artist David Little talked to shoppers and residents about the area.

"The artwork reveals glimpses of a rich history buried under successive layers of development," he explained.

"These include changing industries, new buildings, shifting populations.

"It is a monument to what has come before, and will put into context what is yet to come."

He spent time talking to people about Shadwell and what it means to them, from the history of the London Docks and old Watney Market to stories of migrant populations and ideas about the future.

Transcripts of the conversations were displayed at Watney Market public library and people chose their favourite quotations, which were then carved into the slate.

The benches have glass inserts illuminated by internal LED lights that change colour according to the movement of passing pedestrians, with stone ripples using state-of-the-art stone cutting technology.

The artwork, paid for by St Katherine & Shadwell Trust, the Tower Hill Trust and a City bank, is being officially opened by Poplar & Canning Town MP Jim Fitzpatrick at noon, after a performance by children from nearby Blue Gate Fields Primary school.


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