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Artwork at Tottenham Court Road

Eastern Ticket Hall: ‘no title’ by Richard Wright, 2018

Turner Prize winner Richard Wright has created an intricate, geometric gold-leaf pattern on the vast concrete ceiling above the escalator for the new Tottenham Court Road station eastern ticket hall, located at Charing Cross Road.

“I’m hoping that it will provide a moment of preoccupation or delay and perhaps out of your peripheral vision you might engage with this place, this space.”
- Richard Wright

Richard Wright - Tottenham Court Road

Wright’s commission has been made using medieval and renaissance fresco techniques whereby a paper drawing is pierced with thousands of holes through which watercolour is rubbed to create faint outlines. Once the whole image is on the ceiling, each part of the design was hand-gilded by Wright and his team, applying sheets of 24-carat gold leaf directly to the raw concrete surface, using a natural glue to hold the leaves in place.

“Gold has the immaterial quality of being absent and resent and at the same time. It appears and disappears, it is almost not there at all.”
- Richard Wright

TFL Image - Gold leaf artwork at Tottenham Court Road station 2022

The artwork by Wright absorbs and reflects the ambient light of the ticket hall architecture. Wright especially likes the physical qualities of gold and the way in which, although one of the most stable of materials, its appearance is in a constant state of flux. Depending on the light, gleaming shininess can shift to opaque black or seem almost to disappear altogether. In the airy white glass and stainless steel of the eastern ticket hall all these qualities will be brought into full effect. 

Most of Wright's works have an intentionally brief lifetime and are made to be viewed for a finite period before being painted over. The commission at Tottenham Court Road is therefore a comparative rarity being one of only a few pieces that he has created to remain in perpetuity.

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Western Ticket Hall: ‘Non-Stop’ by Douglas Gordon, 2018

Turner Prize winner Douglas Gordon is creating a video artwork set to be installed at Tottenham Court Road Elizabeth line station's new entrance at Dean Street. The looped video artwork, 'Non-Stop', is inspired by the local area, known for its history of non-stop nightlife, subculture performance and music venues and will be installed above the escalators. The final preparations for the artwork are currently underway.

Sponsor: Almacantar, the City of London Corporation & Derwent London

Gallery partner: Gagosian