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Crossrail appoints Artist-in-Residence

By Hamish McDougall

Crossrail appoints Artist-in-Residence

Crossrail Limited has appointed Julie Leonard as its first Artist-in-Residence. She will create a pictorial diary of Crossrail, capturing many of the personalities and construction scenes across Europe’s largest infrastructure project.

Julie, a London-based painter, printmaker and ‘digital artist’, will use an app on her smart phone to create digital and animated drawings. Working in and around the construction sites, she will provide a narrative of the project, incorporating anecdotes from the workforce and communities living and working along the route, which stretches from Maidenhead in the west to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east, via central London.

The appointment is part of efforts to embed culture within Crossrail, which will add 10% to London’s rail network when it opens in 2018. Separate to its Artist-in-Residence appointment, Crossrail is implementing a permanent exhibition of large-scale art works across seven London Crossrail stations, designed in collaboration with London’s leading art galleries. It is an integral part of Crossrail’s efforts to design and build new high-quality stations and to significantly improve areas above and around the new stations.

Terry Morgan, Crossrail Chairman said: “We want Crossrail to enhance London’s reputation as one of the world’s great cultural and artistic capitals. We have embedded culture into the heart of Crossrail’s design and delivery because it is crucial to nurture the best creative minds, as well as the best commercial ones. We welcome Julie Leonard and look forward to her art, which has a humorous and creative take on everyday situations. Her art will help highlight for the public the huge level of activity underway behind Crossrail’s hoardings.”

Julie Leonard said: “I look forward to creating a body of work that will form a unique archive and visual legacy of places that people rarely see. My digital pieces will be an accessible, versatile and instant way to capture the challenges of building Crossrail. I hope the art will bring together the people working on Crossrail from the bottom up and those who will eventually use it. I see it as an opportunity to engage in the creative process, transfer my excitement about Crossrail and get young people working with me and learning about the project first hand.”

Crossrail will carry over 200 million passengers per year, bringing an additional 1.5 million people within 45 minutes commute of central London. It will link London’s key employment, leisure and business districts – Heathrow, the West End, the City and Canary Wharf, and support regeneration across the capital.

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For further information contact the Crossrail Press Office on 020 3229 9552 or email [email protected]

Notes to Editor

About Julie Leonard

Julie is a painter, printmaker and on screen iPhone digital artist living in London. Her drawings are captured in-situ, often in a matter of minutes, depicting observations of everyday situations and telling a story about the people, the spaces or the situations observed.  Her experience combines inspiring artwork with an in-depth understanding of the built environment and infrastructure sectors.

Click here for more details.

The Culture Line will engage seven world renowned London art galleries, together creating a permanent line-wide exhibition across the seven Crossrail stations. The result will be a series of seven unique destinations, with an art commission of international importance embedded into the design and architecture of each station.

The Culture Line is funded through external sponsorship.

About Crossrail

The total funding envelope available to deliver Crossrail is £14.8bn. The Crossrail route will pass through 38 stations and runs for over 100 kilometres from Maidenhead and Heathrow in the west, through new twin-bore 21 km (13 miles) tunnels to Shenfield and Abbey Wood in the east.

When Crossrail opens it will increase London's rail-based transport network capacity by 10 per cent, supporting regeneration and cutting journey times across the city. Crossrail services are due to commence through central London in 2018.

Crossrail is being delivered by Crossrail Limited (CRL). CRL is a wholly owned subsidiary of Transport for London. Crossrail is jointly sponsored by the Department for Transport and Transport for London.