St George’s staff featured in a portrait exhibition launched across Tower Bridge Road today (Sunday 13 June).

The Inside Out London project includes 3000 black and white portraits London’s heroes – including key workers and school children – who have made a difference to their local areas during the pandemic to celebrate the UEFA EURO 2020 Championships.

London is hosting eight matches during UEFA EURO 2020, including both semi-finals and the final. The Mayor wants as many Londoners as possible to be part of the action to showcase the capital’s diversity and generate excitement across the city, following the  events of the last year.

The exhibition launched across Tower Bridge Road – longer than the length of two football pitches – initially, but five other locations will be adorned with the portraits over the coming month including Granary Square in King’s Cross, the Bernie Grant Arts Centre in Tottenham, Lewisham Town Hall in Catford and in the Royal Docks. A special exhibition of portraits will also take place as part of the Wembley Park Outdoor Gallery and the Outside Art project at Kings Cross.

This large-scale Inside Out public installation has been created by internationally acclaimed French artist JR, in partnership with City of London, who wanted to capture the stories of Londoners during the tournament and celebrating the people that make up our capital. Over the past decade, more than 400,000 people across 138 countries have taken part in Inside Out which has inspired collaborations and conversations about a range of topics including diversity, feminism, racism, climate change and art.

This series of temporary outdoor exhibitions complements the Mayor of London’s Let’s Do London campaign, which is encouraging Londoners and visitors to come back to the city and take advantage of London’s public spaces and cultural riches. The Let’s Do London campaign includes a wide-ranging programme of one-off special events created in partnership with London’s best-known cultural institutions and tourism attractions to bring central London’s economy back to life following the impact of the pandemic.

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “It’s fantastic that eight games from the UEFA EURO 2020 Football Championships are taking place in London this summer, and the Inside Out project is a great way for Londoners to mark the tournament. Five locations across our capital will be transformed into spectacular open exhibition spaces in a celebration of our diversity and the incredible efforts of our community heroes over the last year. It will show the power of football to bring people together and will be another great reason for Londoners and visitors to safely enjoy our capital this summer.”

JR, artist and creator of Inside Out, said: “The Inside Out Project will allow any person in London to express a visual statement with their portrait. It’s the first photobooth truck activation since a long time, at a beautiful moment of reopening – bringing people together again and building bridges through art.”

Lord Mayor of the City of London, William Russell, said: “It is a tremendous idea to turn our Tower Bridge, arguably, one of the most famous landmarks in the capital, into a massive artwork to celebrate the laudable contribution of thousands of local heroes and UEFA EURO 2020. I am sure that JR’s portraits will bring a smile to people’s faces and delight everyone who took part in this major project.”

Hannah Azieb Pool, Artistic Director/CEO Bernie Grant Arts Centre, said: “It’s been a real privilege to support Black artists and focus on work directly connecting with the community during the pandemic. And now, as we celebrate, reconnect and reflect with our annual Windrush Festival, we are thrilled to welcome JR’s democratic community project Inside Out to the heart of Tottenham and to showcase local heroes from our Black community in particular across our public spaces as part of this London-wide photographic installation.  The generosity and care shown by people of all ages and backgrounds in Tottenham during this past year has been heartening and empowering and to highlight the humanity shown as London hosts football fans from across Europe is a gift.”

Notes to editors

Inside Out is designed to have a minimal impact on the environment. It uses recycled paper and the photobooth is powered by compressed natural gas.

Locations are listed below:

  • Sunday 13 June – Tower Bridge Road
  • Thursday 17 June, Friday 25 June, Saturday 26 June – Lewisham (Lewisham Town Hall)
  • Friday 18 June – Granary Square, Kings Cross
  • Saturday 19 June – Granary Square, Kings Cross
  • Sunday 20 June – Granary Square, Kings Cross
  • Monday 21 June – Bernie Grants Arts Centre, Tottenham
  • Wednesday 23 June, Thursday 24 June, Wednesday 7 July, Thursday 8 July  – Royal Victoria Dock, Royal Docks

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