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Waterfront fund takes flight with launch of first artworks


Two new artworks have appeared on the Leeds waterfront ahead of this year’s Waterfront Festival.

The pieces, funded by the Waterfront Enhancement Fund have taken up residence near the Royal Armouries and further down the river along the South Bank.

‘The Grey Heron’  was delivered by Canal Connections in partnership with Yorkshire Design Group and social enterprise IVE. The artwork is designed to be submerged and then reappear as the river level changes.

‘The Heroes of Leeds Trail’ [pictured] is a new installation delivered by waterway and wellbeing charity Canal & River Trust. Artworks Creative Communities created the work from laser-cut steel, which are installed along the South Bank of the river, near Leeds Dock. The installation includes eight ‘heroes’ all who have significant links to the city, this includes the father of the waterways John Smeaton, prominent civil rights activist Leonora Cohen and Yona Knight-Wisdom, the Leeds born and bred diver, who represented Jamaica at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio De Janeiro.

The grey heron was chosen as a subject for the mural because several of these birds are now regularly sighted slightly further down the river, just beyond the Royal Armouries. The presence of these birds demonstrates the health of the waterway running through the city. The mural represents the first step towards what is hoped will become an active art and sculpture trail along the waterfront


Artist: Peter Barber

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