Arsenal Football Club is proud to unveil new artwork that will adorn the exterior of Emirates Stadium, transform the north London skyline and redefine the club’s home as a cultural landmark.
Together with a diverse group of Arsenal supporters, Turner Prize-winning artist Jeremy Deller, critically acclaimed artist Reuben Dangoor, and distinguished graphic designer David Rudnick, led the design process during a series of consultations which began in April 2022. The workshops were designed to curate insight on the club’s heritage, culture and community in order to inspire eight pieces of art which represent what Arsenal stands for in 2023 and beyond.
While each piece of art has a different theme, they are unified in celebrating the club’s rich history, community values and its relentless pursuit of progress. The project has only been possible thanks to the contribution of more than 100 supporters, legends and their families and a number of club staff. It began with a blank canvas and harnessed the passion, love and knowledge of the Arsenal community across the world to create art that would express the pride they have in their club.
Amongst the many supporters who contributed to bringing the new artwork to life were legends of the game including Kelly Smith and descendants of legends who have passed, including Jill Armstrong, daughter of Geordie Armstrong; David Rocastle’s family; Lynne Hapgood and Jake Hapgood, daughter and grandson of Eddie Hapgood; Graham Drake and Liam Harding, son and great-grandson of Ted Drake; and Reg Lewis’ stepson, Richard Stubbs.
The installation of the eight pieces of art began on January 12 and will continue over forthcoming weeks.
Speaking about the project, Arsenal CEO, Vinai Venkatesham, said:
“This has been a fantastic project enabled by so many of the Arsenal family here in Islington and across the world. We genuinely couldn’t have brought this project to life without everyone working together and giving their passion and dedication to this work.”
“I express my heartfelt gratitude to everyone who has been involved and made this unique piece of work possible.”
“We started with a blank canvas with the hope of capturing and expressing our rich history, our values of community and progress and reflect what Arsenal stands for in 2023 and beyond.”
“The project has brought together our supporters, community, legends and staff as one. It’s a real celebration of the Arsenal community, designed for and by the Arsenal family.”
Turner Prize winning artist, Jeremy Deller, said:
“As an Islington resident for more than 20 years, where Emirates Stadium has been my landscape, I’m so proud to have played a part in this project. The final artwork is a product of the collaboration and hard work of so many in the Arsenal community and it adds another layer to the rich history of this iconic corner of north London.”
Critically acclaimed artist, Reuben Dangoor, said:
“It’s been a privilege and a pleasure to work with Arsenal supporters to bring their love and passion for the club to life. I’m a lifelong Gooner so it’s all a bit surreal and this has to go down as one of my favourite projects ever.
“The legends I’ve had the pleasure of drawing are so iconic and they mean so much to me personally. I hope lovers of Arsenal love the work as much as I do.”
Distinguished graphic designer, David Rudnick, said:
“Across the eight pieces of art we hope we’ve created something for everyone. The type-based designs implement typefaces from a project we’ve been undertaking with the club and the supporters’ workshops, to craft a set of voices incorporating both patterns and symbols synonymous with Arsenal, and a clean typographic system that shows how our values are present not just in the future we are building, but all the way to the club’s origins in Eighteen Eighty-Six.
“That aspect of Arsenal resonates so much with every supporter; the perspective of always moving forward whilst celebrating and never forgetting our heritage.”
Lianne Sanderson, who features on Invincible and Future Brilliance, said:
“It’s an absolute honour to be included in the artwork.”
“Arsenal has always been ahead of the game with regards to the men’s and women’s team. That’s one of the reasons we were able to be so successful because of that support.”
“It’s so good for trailblazers and the previous generation of players to be celebrated and recognised in this way. It’s such a proud moment.”
Arsenal academy graduate and Under 18 coach Jack Wilshere, who features in Future Brilliance, said:
“Arsenal has been such an important part of my life for so long from such a young age as a player and now here I am writing another chapter with the club as an Academy coach.”
“To be part of the artwork is really humbling and a big honour for me personally, but it also shows our commitment to developing young players and is a signal to them about seizing opportunities here.”
“That’s a really important message for our young players but also for young people in our community.”
Life-long Arsenal supporter, season ticket holder and contributor to the project, Akhil Vyas, said:
“This artwork is something I can look at as a supporter and feel proud. Remember who you are, what you are and who you represent. And I think the stadium design does that.”
“The consultations brought diverse supporters and people connected to the club together and tapped into fan culture and considered the moments and players who make us what we are today, but I’m really glad the final artwork includes supporters and our global community which brings us all together and shows that we are one.”
Supporters are welcome to view the exhibition of the new artwork from Thursday, 12 January – Saturday 14 January between 10am – 4pm at Candid Arts Trust, 3-5 Torrens Street, London, EC1V 1NQ.