Britain’s tallest mural demolished, locals salvage section for sale.
Britain’s tallest mural ‘Big Mother’ by street artist STIK has been demolished but locals have rescued a section of the artwork to raise money for their arts program. The 38.2m (125 ft) mural, painted on the south side of social housing tower block Charles Hocking House in 2014, depicts a mother and child figure gazing forlornly out across the West London skyline. So tall it was clearly visible from planes leaving Heathrow Airport the mural became a symbol of protest against the destruction of social housing, a message immortalised by its recent demolition.
Local charity Artification, who run a free arts program for council residents fought to salvage the 280cm (9ft) spray-painted brick section of the mural before its demolition, and with the support of the artist STIK have had it stabilised, framed and placed in auction. The artwork, named ‘Big Mother’ after the original mural, is on display at the NEW NOW exhibition at Phillips, London and will go under the hammer on 5 December 2018.
International street artist STIK who prefers to remain anonymous only authenticates the sale of street artworks when it is to benefit the local community. Another of STIK’s street artworks sold at Christies for £150,000 earlier this year.
“‘Big Mother’ represents vulnerable families and the need for public housing. The destruction of the public housing block it was painted on only adds to its meaning.”
"ARTification is a community rooted cultural arts charity that responds creatively to the needs of local residents. It has been an amazing adventure knowing and working with Stik as he imagined, created and shared the message of Big Mother. We are honoured to now benefit from the Charity Auction of Little Big Mother. The proceeds will enable ARTification to deepen and extend our work celebrating art, culture and community."
-Rachel Pepper, ARTification
“I’m a single mum and I used to live on the 9 th floor of the building made famous by the Big Mother mural. We really felt the artwork was for us and it made it a pleasure to come home each day. After they ripped it down they re-housed me and my 10 year old son in another estate nearby and guess what?… they are regenerating this estate too and we know what means”.
-Farzana, former resident of Charles Hocking House
Drone Footage of the creation and demolition of ‘Big Mother’
Phillips Auction lot 14 STIK ‘Big Mother’:
Independent feature on Big Mother 2014:
BBC Front Row 2014:
Christies previous sale: