The annual London Design Festival which is on right now at time of writing presents a dizzying selection of visual indulgences across London and a particularly eye catching one is Quick Tide by Felipe Pantone.
Felipe has been seen in Shoreditch in the past painting dazzling abstract spraypainted murals though history is no impediment to a writer of hype, Quick Tide is according to the promoters Felipe’s first commissioned artwork in the UK, why being first in this manner should have any significance is not clear.
The Tide is a work-in-progress 5km elevated walkway along the south bank of the River Thames heading east or, for the Captain Pugwash in you, downstream from North Greenwich and ultimately, when complete, forming a loop around the peninsula returning to the station at North Greenwich which is helpful as you don’t want to be dumped a million miles from civilisation at the end of a 5km wander. It is not a million miles from a purpose built Greenwich version of New York’s High Line. Felipe’s vinyl wrap Quick Tide artwork is a temporary addition to what seem to be a more permanent installation of contemporary sculptures along The Tide trail.
Quick Tide certainly livens up what would otherwise be a fairly bland start to the public walkway. Soft blends and rainbow spectrums in Pantone’s signature style delight the eyes. Felipe has developed a real knack for kinetic dayglow trompe l’oeil art pieces which always make you nod and think…” yessss….clever”. His playful use of interference patterns has made him one of the most interesting contemporary artists to emerge from the graffiti scene.
Quick Tide seems to have been installed for London’s Design Festival which ran 17th – 25th September though it is captioned “Greenwich Peninsula Art Trail” in the LDF guide and that art trail certainly seems to be permanent. Photos of the stairs and cantilevered structure without Pantone’s art show it to be a sterile bland exercise in municipal footpath geometry. The signs are confusing, the signals are unclear, the abstract art deserves to live a bit longer but who can tell whether it survives past this week – to grant such a short life seems a waste and indeed an insult to the creativity that has gone into its conception.
Felipe Pantone Instagram
Art On The Tide/Greenwich Peninsula/The Peninsulist website
London Design Festival website
all photos: Dave Stuart