Anthony Burrill unveils joyful four-storey typographic installation in Covent Garden

Love, Hope & Joy is emblazoned in vivid colours across a building overlooking the famous piazza, as a “celebration of the unquenchable human spirit”

1 July 2020

A giant, four-storey typographic installation designed by Anthony Burrill has been unveiled in London’s Covent Garden, proclaiming the message Love, Hope & Joy in a rainbow of colours across the piazza. Commissioned by Covent Garden to “spread a message of hope for Londoners,” it forms part of a programme of work aimed at welcoming back visitors and thanking the NHS. Burrill says he wanted to make a public artwork that “connected with how we are all feeling at the moment and to offer an optimistic statement about the human qualities that unite us all. Love, hope and joy are emotions that bring us together”.

Though Burrill is known for his big and bold artworks, this project is truly epic in size. So the artist explains that while the canvas is larger, the message is still enough on its own, while there are subtle touches that maintain a human element. “The words are the main focus of the piece, there’s no need for extra visual adornment when the meaning is so simple and direct,” he tells It’s Nice That. “The words are big, bright and impossible to miss. The typeface I’ve used is letterpress wood type which adds a warmth and humanity to the design. I use analogue techniques to make my work, the slight imperfections in the letters add to the look and feel of a handmade artwork.”

Meanwhile the bright colours he’s chosen are intended as a “celebration of the unquenchable human spirit,” he adds. “We all need more love, more hope and more joy.”

Like many of us, Burrill says he’s “gone through ups and downs over the past few months,” of the pandemic lockdown, but it’s changed his outlook. “It’s been an emotional time trying to make sense of what we're living through and how to best adapt. I’ve been trying to stay positive and appreciate the benefits of a slower pace of life with more time for reflection. Lockdown has changed everything we knew and brought into sharp focus the important things in life. This new context has given another layer of meaning to the projects I’ve been engaged in. It's made me even more determined to make work that engages with the world and the people in it.”

Love, Hope & Joy is on view in Covent Garden until October. A limited edition series of (smaller) prints of the poster are for sale, with profits going to NHS Charities Together.

GalleryAnthony Burrill: Love, Hope & Joy for Covent Garden

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Anthony Burrill: Love, Hope & Joy for Covent Garden

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Jenny Brewer

Jenny oversees our editorial output across work, news and features. She was previously It’s Nice That's news editor. Get in touch with any big creative stories, tips, pitches, news and opinions, or questions about all things editorial.

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