New art on Jubilee Square, as part of our programme, funded by a grant from the GLA, to celebrate our wonderful New Malden community, boost the town centre and make it an attractive place for residents and visitors we engaged the experienced and accomplished artist Julia Vogl to show us how she creates "Social Sculpture"
Julia envisioned a mural for Jubilee Square by starting with origin of the word Malden which derives from two Anglo-Saxon words, mæl, meaning ‘cross’ or ‘crucifix’, and dun, meaning ‘hill’. So the name means ‘Hill with a crucifix (on it)’. Then Julia held many conversations with local people about what it is they like about the area, and unanimously people said "it feels like home" This is how the name 'Home on the Hill' was born.
It was clear from the start that people in New Malden care deeply about food and culture so from May to July we delivered workshops that focused on three questions.
What is your favourite food- is it sweet or spicy?
How long have you lived in New Malden?
What do you associate with home e.g friends and family, environment, food etc?
We had vibrant, interesting discussions with many people on Jubilee Square, held workshops in various community centres and held a stall at the Craft Fair on the High Street. During those sessions we encouraged people to take part in a creative game with their friends and family. It involved making a key fob with colours and symbols on that corresponded with a key/ colour code depending the answers people gave.
Subsequently we ended up with hundreds of symbols representing the interactions we had with local people. These symbols have been put into the mural and there will be a key, whereby everyone can play the game we created and see how many people they resonate with in our mural, and of course those who took part can now return and see their symbol in the mural thus connecting the makers and the observers in the work of art.