Wembley Park’s new Spanish Steps commission, in collaboration with Mind and the EFL, to raise awareness about mental health issues
One in Four, Wembley Park.
In collaboration with mental health charity Mind, Wembley Park have commissioned artist Frank Styles to adorn the Spanish Steps, connecting Wembley Stadium to The SSE Arena, Wembley, with an abstract and thought-provoking artwork. A series of 12 portraits run down the steps; viewed from head on, three of the portraits on each section of the stairs are visible, but the fourth can be seen only if you look over from the adjacent flight. Called, One in Four the work symbolises that understanding mental health issues and how they can affect people, sometimes requires a shift in perspective.
The collaboration is a part of the official English Football League (EFL) and Mind partnership which aims to raise awareness about mental health problems among football fans. With one in four people experiencing a mental health problem each year, raising awareness that we all have both physical and mental health to look after is an important part of the EFL and Mind’s work.
Josh McNorton, Wembley Park’s Cultural Director, said, "It's been a great experience collaborating with Mind to commission the incredible street artist Frank Styles and raise awareness of an important social issue. Art has the ability to reveal untold stories and change public perceptions; with Frank’s bold designs on the Spanish Steps, thousands of people visiting Wembley Park will realise the impact mental health can have on people and will also be prompted to think about their own."
Creating large-scale artworks is a passion for artist Frank Styles. Some of his previous works cover up to 200 square meters meters. He expertly paints using small details to complete big artworks resulting in impactful imagery from a distance and close up. Styles has previously painted several murals for his club Sunderland Association Football Club (SAFC), including one commissioned by Mind and the EFL for their awareness-raising campaign ‘Goals Worth Talking About’.
Styles said, “As a football fan, having the opportunity to do a commission at the home of football is a great honour. For me, it’s even better to have this opportunity in collaboration with Mind, because, having lost my brother to mental illness, this is a cause that is very close to my heart.”
One in Four is the fourth public art commission for the Spanish Steps at Wembley Park. Previously, in September 2019, artist Maser transformed the Spanish Steps with Saturation Surge, a bold design with geometric shapes and patterns ahead of London Design Festival. Other earlier commissions include: LOVE, LOVE, LOVE designed by Clare Page and Harry Richardson of Committee studio which was created to coincide with Wembley Park’s Christmas lights and cultural programme Xmasbox; the first commission, Flight was designed by artist Remi Rough to mark the launch of Wembley Park’s programme Summer of Play.
The commissions form a high profile part of Wembley Park’s cultural programme, which includes art commissions, major events and performances, much of it free and in the public realm.
About Wembley Park
Wembley Park is a dynamic, cultural neighbourhood in North West London. Already home to the 12,500 capacity The SSE Arena, Wembley, London's most iconic concert and events venue and Wembley Stadium, the neighbourhood is building on its international reputation for music and sporting events and becoming a landmark destination with culture, entertainment and community at its heart. It includes homes, shops, and places to work, as well as attractive public spaces, with parks and gardens, public squares and wide boulevards for locals and visitors alike to enjoy. When completed, nearly half of the 85-acre site will be open space.
The cultural strategy for Wembley Park includes affordable artist studios, run by Second Floor Studios & Arts and extensive public art programming and events, many free. Its new Cultural Director, Josh McNorton, is leading the establishment of Wembley Park Arts, a new cultural programme for Wembley Park, ensuring leadership across commissioning, co-production, cultural infrastructure support and developing local, national and international partnerships.
Wembley Park is also home to Troubadour Wembley Park Theatre, a star cultural attraction boasting a new flexible 1,000-2,000 seat capacity theatre inside the former Fountain Studios and Getty Images Gallery, which presents a programme of thematic photography exhibitions featuring images sourced from the world renowned Getty Images archival and contemporary collections. At the end of 2019, Wembley Park and The Royal Philharmonic Orchestra (RPO) announced a new partnership that will see the orchestra move its headquarters to the area.
As the Principal Partner of Brent 2020 London Borough of Culture, Wembley Park hosts a number of community-focused, cultural events throughout the year. The presence of Brent Civic Centre, encompassing Wembley Library and the council offices, as well as The Yellow, a purpose-built community centre, providing a weekly selection of activities ranging from gardening to dance classes, make Wembley Park the urban heart of Brent and the perfect location to highlight, celebrate and explore this diverse borough’s unique cultural heritage. The neighbourhood will also play a vital role throughout this year’s UEFA Euro 2020 tournament, and football matches at Wembley Stadium will be supported by free public programming.
The neighbourhood continues to welcome innovative brands, including Black Sheep Coffee, Bread Ahead, Pasta Remoli, Twenty3c and Chop-Chop London. A unique shopping option, Wembley Park Market, combines lifestyle, fashion, food, arts and crafts, health and wellness, with a selection of pop-up boutiques offering the best in ethical fashion from local designers and craftspeople, as well as fresh groceries from independent traders. The presence of four hotels, and London Designer Outlet (LDO), which includes 70 high street outlet stores, restaurants, bars, coffee shops, and a 9‐screen Cineworld cinema and Boxpark Wembley, which has brought independent and established street food traders to the area, make Wembley Park an exceptional destination for culture, food and shopping.
With 6,000 new homes being created by developer Quintain, in addition to the 2,500 already built (with 1,306 under Tipi’s, Quintain’s lifestyle-focused rental management company, management), Wembley Park is one of Europe’s largest regeneration schemes. Just 12 minutes from Central London, Wembley Park has excellent transport connections to central London via the Jubilee and Metropolitan tube lines and Overground from Wembley Stadium station.