Save Our Subways at Elephant and Castle. Ep. 3 "The Murals"

so with the David ratby who painted the murals of the elephant coughs around about subways hello David hello so where are we standing at the moment well we’re standing in a subway underneath the other than castle and this one was the first one we painted and it’s of a carnival really rio de janeiro it’s a 30 count carnival they wanted something bright and cheery and that which reflected the culture of the area I see this does and it’s a festival right the way down this subway is it all Rio that we’re looking at least arts this heart is Rio then they commissioned need to do the next heart mm-hmm and that’s turns into festivals on different parts of the world okay and that is this one is straight bit disfigured but how do you feel seeing them more than 20 years on well they’re all in really good condition already light that’s what I try to do is use light colors so they’re bright and as you can see these are kind of them fluorescent colors so there they reflect the light very strongly oh this one’s an Indian festival I must admit this is in India so although there would have been lots of in many Indian people living here with a festival itself is in India where’s this one reflects more of a sort of culture that goes on in elephant party they this this dragon was was in somebody’s garage the local and this driver obviously these this background here is is of the country itself okay and when you were designing these in March did you did you have to draw sketches first and get them approved by people or and and what was that process like and were the first the first initial one was a competition they put it out to competition with me and some other other art groups and that they liked my one because i think it’s just much more direct you’re so bright and colorful of a carnival yeah okay right well here’s my name this has been put up recently I never I never saw this before uncle David brat so it’s not actually your name is it no it’s gotta be in it thurs David brat be so that this one is so much pomp me but getting money I think this was in Southern farm and you can see it see some open air festival there are some things about the different things and this is another one and this is this a policy is a drag OMG city haha this let the local chinese association now this is a sign at the bottom here so that’s saying Southwark fair 1991 yeah oh yeah that does make things easy doesn’t it so that was sudden so there’s this estate that’s quite severe looking yeah the gardens are all lovely and lush yeah it’s just around the corner from here he’s not damage that’s all just a tiny bit down there where it looks like trolleys and stuff you painted a rat I see ya what was the inspiration the real rats did you see some down here I’m sure we did I can’t remember now so where are we here we look for in Shakespeare’s land of some kind that looks like Steve right the DJ play attentional this is the George in which is just down the road credible building doing the Shakespeare and play I see and on the other side let me just

them Oh Luke intolerant takes another down in the down in the gutter for sorry so this is now 1993 you were painting it is this the third set yeah and with the elephant castle as you probably know from your history it used to be the entertainment center of London that where people to come and dance in these big musicals with their very own painting walls with mirrors it and then there was a place to be and so in the trucker do with the epicenter of it all and on this side one of the scenes that I know a lot of people talk about we’ve got a lot of dogs sorry Thomas so these are the docs now known as sorry keys yes I don go on the working industry and not that long full fully working can you explain what this elephant is doing hook of nostalgic photograph and there was one where they were reaching this elephant of it doctor very visibly sure uh-huh oh and did that was happening in the sorry docks was it yeah so this is an historic moment being captured in paint I think so there’s a lot of artistic license what have you found here no that’s just paper somebody says stuff a phone oh that’s just the collateral wash off fine all those tight marks in the other Phil what they’ll watch out that was just various bits where’s it come off but them and they want to shift the blame but that’s because of the council’s initial coating they put an epoxy resin coating on the wall for me to paint on and that’s what’s come off my thing hasn’t come off anything no quality job and you were saying earlier how you had a contract without relief to to come back and touch it up from you by the time so I could go and try and find that that contract yeah must be there’s another must be more yeah there’s more just around the corner so this is a local trapped in here is exactly we’re not quite exactly oh you got a local host some of these flat and they checked all of their own fairly elderly person they get all of their furniture and equipment by holding two came this is an old radio of course and did the different so awesome from that time Michigan’s just bit paid something stuck on and I’m sewing machines you have but this is this natural flappers close by and a lampstand can you reveal where the flat is no no she’s she made me swear to silencing my important that we repaint these because it’s an expression of racism and you don’t want it to remain yeah that’s the second black person who we’ve seen their faces scratched out yeah yeah yeah where the council as opposed to paid me to them to them come a repair it so I’ve got all them because I don’t like leaving they like that no okay now around the corner from here are some very exotic scenes that I have never fully understood what they have to do with the Elephant and Castle so here we have the eruption of Mount Vesuvius and the siege of Gibraltar what’s it all about this was um this is an enactment

they used to do in Victorian times so because people didn’t travel so much the explorers came back with all these stories and in in them in some local say within that thing they can go innominate almost containment mr. sorry zoological garden so they’ve got a lake on the other side of the make I see them so there’s the siege of Gibraltar which was a historic act it’s being reenacted yes sorry zoological gardens at the 1840s that’s right and now reenacted again in the 1990s no well my people you’ll be because of your painting in nineteen to hear ya and these guys in the jeans they’re they’re contemporary to your painting where they are yes but they they would have been wearing this Oracle garments at the time yeah but I didn’t see I didn’t see the point in actually falsifying their clothes because these are local local people yeah and they would have been local people yeah so these these people here are these people armed rest at the lead to chat zero-day local they modern the other actual people are okay Gina do you remember who these men were made entirely member terrible what’s 40 years ago it wasn’t 40 years ago 20 years ago any local councillors immortalized on the mural how you remember that don’t remember looking at these faces wondering they were the ones some signed off your concepts don’t know i think he was the plat of work for the engineering department okay the Leonardo well they’re the Medicis of their day then with you being the that’s right yes and over here similarly modern people dressed up they are reenacting the moment Mountain serious erupted it does it kind of ray the vibe coming of these two me and early 90s sort of psychedelia that was that a scene you a part of in your thirties so David wit we’re heading to the next set of murals can you remember how many you’ve done down here or is it is it surprising you see the volume of work I can’t remember any help I didn’t remember for the kicker i do remember this chess game now now you reminded me oh yeah thank you for the wig bit free for all time a free throw what what do you mean by that welded the scene the progression it went from Oh No then this is still historically because the Vincent van Gogh miss it is cafe one scene yeah get a little gold lived close by thought fact there’s a connection between van Gogh and the elephant in our in we go there we go there’s your inscription so Vincent van Gogh lived that Ivy cottage 395 Kennington Road in 1874 is van Gogh or anyone else immortalized in this mural well yes this one that this is a this is a sort of them as a pastiche is that stage of his cafe scene but again it’s got local people in it and that’s a picture of me in the middle there so it this is you in the blue shirt perhaps I see this resemblance yummy with mr. hm Wow do you remember who you’re talking to there Henrietta who helped me with the murals so this one’s always bubbled me the human chess game I call it right what’s

going on it’s based on a play and it used all these chess pieces but all these characters are from local people this man here he time the elephant castle shopping center was has been quite innovative they had what we call pop ups now we’re empty shops were given two artists and facade and this chap here was in the middle of the floor they’re teaching teaching dull results of Darwin’s and he said to me now I could teach yourself I said I can’t dance Tony said yeah I could teach you it didn’t work so where were you researching to unearth an 1865 player using chess pieces that sounds quite random you’re aware that would have been in the library local library okay what are you doing have internet Kevin oh but it sounds like you’re going down just opening books up at random pages what were you looking for well its got this got a progression from the beginning so it’s all different historical aspects I think the last thing you saw was flat work so the work and and and social life that you hadn’t had our work so that you look the dogs and in them the nine life and then I started going back in time so then you got the Dickensian stories play so this is one notices in that kind of vein really so this this one here is Charlie chapters oh yeah we’ve never done lifting myself I’m with local people in it again so you’ve recreated scenes from Chaplin movies that’s right woven them together and put elephant a cultural residents into his role that’s right and over here we end up we’ve got some people dressed up as Charlie Chaplin a lot of slapstick going on yeah who is the woman with big on before cake be great to track these people down and they’re great reunion recreate these scenes in 3d we’re alive you could be could it better you could send out a communique couldn’t it saying the the artist is just didn’t work didn’t keep their dresses or their names and could you come forward yeah william Hogarth of course painted scenes from southern and this is the seizure of his I think some would say it’s very much like ho Goths time here still what do you think yeah so it’s not quite so bad actually I think it was worth them people didn’t leave myself in 40 most people do now this is in the blue shirt okay so how many david brat bees are down here well the musty fall for okay we’ve seen two anyway so I’m going to be looking at the stone we’ve seen two in this tunnel yeah 3 in 1 through I don’t know that doesn’t look like a critic paint to me looks like household so in section of the subways with murals it’s you didn’t paint tonight what’s the story behind these that you work all well did the earth there was an artist before me who painted some but she wasn’t treated very well by the other contractor down down down here in fact they made their life a misery so she she said I’m not painting them anymore yeah and then they put it out into a competition to do the rest on I see so we must try and track her down yes yeah odd that there’s not a little plaque

saying her name no no I I didn’t realize anyone else had painted them until just now yeah there is no plaque that I’ve seen but the style is very different it’s it’s less vibrant more the pictorial painterly yes standing here beneath the main road where half the light bulbs are not working and the artworks pretty dark but you see children like these animal you