PhD student Jade makes international line up in Art on the Underground programme
A University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) artist’s work will be viewed by more than 25 million people as part of a London Underground art exhibition.
PhD student Jade Montserrat is one of an international selection of women artists who will take part in the 2018 Art on the Underground exhibition, Transport for London’s public art programme.
Jade’s artwork will be on the cover of more than 25 million copies of the London Tube map. With almost six million journeys taken on London Underground each day, Art on the Underground’s 2018 programme will put women at the forefront of public space.
The idea behind the initiative is to give space to the diverse public that make up society, addressing structural gender imbalance which is prevalent in the arts and in particular the public arts. Other artists’ work will take up street level billboards and an ambitious sculptural intervention will sit on an 80 metre long platform at Gloucester Road Station as part of a mass presence across London.
It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to share my work with so many people and a huge honour to be amongst such amazing artistic company.
Jade’s art primarily focuses on race and representation in Northern Britain in the context of the Black Atlantic, which describes the blending of black cultures with other cultures from around the Atlantic. She is a member of UCLan’s Institute for Black Atlantic Research (IBAR) and her work takes many forms including performance, film, installation, sculpture and print.Jade will decide later this year what pieces will appear on the Tube Map cover when it is re-printed in October.
The artist, who is from Scarborough and studied at Norwich University of the Arts and Courtauld Institute of Art before coming to UCLan, said: “I’m really thrilled. The most exciting part of it is applying the research to something that will be so widely disseminated. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity to share my work with so many people and a huge honour to be amongst such amazing artistic company.
“I’m thinking about my practice as creating a dialogue. l therefore welcome as many conversations as possible through this process to ensure that a plurality of voices might enter into the final work for art on the underground.”
The year-long programme will mark 100 years since the Representation of the People Act enabled all men and some women over the age of 30 to vote for the first time.
Through 2018, Art on the Underground will use its series of commissions to reframe public space, to allow artists’ voices of diverse backgrounds and generations to underline the message that there is no single women’s voice in art.
Eleanor Pinfield, Head of Art on the Underground, said: “Through 2018, Art on the Underground will use its series of commissions to reframe public space, to allow artists’ voices of diverse backgrounds and generations to underline the message that there is no single women’s voice in art – there are however many urgent voices that can challenge the city’s structures of male power.”
Jade’s PhD, which is funded by the Stuart Hall Foundation, is supervised by 2017 Turner Prize winner Lubaina Himid MBE and Professor Alan Rice from the UCLan’s IBAR. The artist is also on the board of trustees at Crescent Arts, Scarborough, where she was a studio holder from 2011 – 2014.
For more information about Art on the Underground visit https://art.tfl.gov.uk/
Photo credit: No Need For Clothing, 2017 - drawing installation at Cooper Gallery/DJCAD photo by Jacquetta Clark.