A reinterpretation of the traditional London Underground roundel will be installed above the main entrance to Westminster tube station.
Entitled 'Pan African Flag for the Relic Travellers' Alliance (Union)', British-Ghanaian artist Larry Achiampong's version of the roundel will be unveiled on 12 April 2022 — rendered in vibrant vitreous enamel.
54 stars for 54 countries of the African continent
Achiampong's design eschews the traditional red, white and blue Underground scheme in favour of the Pan African colours green, black and red — as well a yellow-gold to represent "a new day and prosperity." 54 stars spangle the edge of the roundel, representing each of the 54 countries of the African continent joined in union.
(It'll still incorporate Johnston font.)
The roundel is inspired by Adinkra, a Ghanaian system of symbols conveying short concepts and proverbs relating to everyday life and the environment. The artist's own concept of 'Sanko-time', which alludes to using the past to prepare for the future, also informed the roundel's design.
"It's important to have a connection to and a stake in a place"
Said Achiampong about his latest commission: "I feel that this permanent work at Westminster centres itself as a place of representation, so that among the many that will encounter it, especially young Black kids who pass it by chance can see it as a lifting point.
"I didn't see many artworks in public spaces growing up that were saying this is part of you or you can connect to this; this belongs to you. It's important to have a connection to and a stake in a place."
You may already be familiar with Larry Achiampong's work; his art features on the cover of the 35th edition of pocket tube map. And, in 2019, the artist did a temporary takeover of 70 roundels at Westminster station.
This latest artwork, though, is here to stay.