Cape Town – Capetonians have received a new art-transformed pedestrian line crossing, ‘Recollection’, in Sea Point.
The artwork was created by local artist Al Luke, one half of Cape Town-based creative duo Mrs+Mr Luke, and is located on Main Road outside the Artem Centre near Sea Point High School.
Luke said from a young age Sea Point was a destination where he would go with his family to get close to the ocean, run in the parks and skate as far as his legs would carry him.
“In this work I have tried to capture a snapshot of the Sea Point I know and love with the use of bold colour and line work. This piece is dedicated to the beautiful people of Cape Town for always inspiring me,” Luke said.
According to the Blok’s CEO, Jacques van Embden, the 16m x 14m artwork piece aimed to enhance pedestrian safety in the Sea Point area and brighten the city’s public spaces.
He said the pedestrian crossing artwork project was initiated by local property developer Blok and executed in collaboration with urbanism practice and consultancy Our Future Cities (OFC).
“The concept is to improve development within cities to reimagine accessibility and safety as more and more people make the move to live in urban areas.
“The idea of future cities that merge sustainable economic development with connected urban living to shape the next generation’s way of life is not unique to Cape Town.
“There’s a deep hunger for these types of projects in every city,” said Van Embden, adding that many murals ultimately emerge as unique landmarks that promote community pride.
“It’s exciting to see the demand. It’s not just about painting roads. Streets are the ultimate gallery. They are where art and life come alive.”
OFC urban practitioner and founding director Rashiq Fataar said a similar transformation project consisting of 18 pedestrian crossings was recently commissioned by the City of London as part of the Mayor of London’s “Let’s Do London” tourism campaign.
“The campaign was used to relaunch the creative, retail, and hospitality sectors as they were disproportionately affected by the coronavirus pandemic,” Fataar said.
Fataar added similar projects had been undertaken in cities such as Milan and Washington DC, where pedestrian crossing artwork had been used to create safer and more vibrant streets.
“For our streets to be reimagined and reclaimed as infrastructure for people rather than just cars, we need provocative and joyful initiatives like this one.
“We have high hopes that this initiative will sow the seeds that will speak to the larger-scale shifts that are necessary for our cities to become more vibrant and sustainable,” Fataar said.