A pedestrian crossing in Sea Point has been transformed by art. Located on Main Road outside of the Artem Centre near Sea Point High School, the artwork was created by local artist Al Luke, one half of Cape Town-based creative duo Mrs+Mr Luke.
The 16m x 14m artwork piece titled ‘Recollection’, aims to enhance pedestrian safety in the Sea Point area and brighten up the city’s public spaces. Luke explains that, from a young age Sea Point has always been a destination where he would go with his family to get close to the ocean, run free 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 linework. This piece is dedicated to the beautiful people of Cape Town for always inspiring me,” said Luke.
The pedestrian crossing artwork project was initiated by local property developer BLOK and was completed 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,” said BLOK’s CEO, Jacques van Embden.
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. Similar projects have been undertaken in cities including Milan and Washington DC, where pedestrian crossing artwork has been used to create safer and more vibrant streets.
Rashiq Fataar, urban practitioner and founding director of Our Future Cities (OFC) said the Sea Point project will enhance the suburb.
“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,” he said.1lq
“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,” he said.