I do feel for the drinking establishments that don’t have an area dedicated to outdoor pursuits, without endangering pedestrians, traffic wardens bonuses, or your hairstyle in the rain.
The Rose Villa Tavern (a Grade II listed building) recently asked for an all-weather seating area to be decorated, together with my very good friend Glen, who I battled alongside to reach the final of the Secret Wars Euroleague as the Brum 6…
It was quite an honour to be asked to paint such a beautiful tavern in a very nice part of Birmingham. Since returning from Europe, it was the kind of painting work that I had hoped for, especially after painting the ‘De Buurvrouw’ bar in Amsterdam.
Where is it?
Located in the historic Jewellery Quarter in Hockley, Birmingham, next door to the sister venue to the Custard Factory, the Big Peg, is a beautifully classic old tiled pub built originally for the Mitchells & Butlers brewery back in 1919.
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The rough plan was to paint the ceiling and walls from the perspective of a door threshold between a cold, outdoor garden and a huge, warm mansion interior. The room is only 7m x 2m, with a skewed elevation, making for a very adventurous interior. We painted it knowing that seating was going to be installed around the walls, meaning we were only required to paint above the 1m mark. The initial concept was to recreate an old library, or gentleman’s club in aerosol paint. From the viewpoint at the centre of the room, you are faced (on entering) with a scene containing trees, a greenhouse and a balcony fit for Oliver Reed. Whilst behind you are bookcases, swimming pool, wooden furniture and skylights.
A usual method of decorating a cubic space (room) with a mural is to use the parallel lines of the existing space to explore false depth, it was quickly decided to construct everything on a slight skew. This would mean that the horizontal lines would, in the main, be on a slanted perspective. Although a challenge to construct in paint, it serves the purpose of sending the viewer into another reality once inside. We painted the whole piece on a black background and worked with existing lighting to add to the illusion of being in a larger space.
Oh, before I forget – you have to try out the amazing burgers and ales when (and hopefully, if) you visit…
To see the interactive panorama, you will need to be viewing in a web browser equipped with Adobe Flash player. Once you’re in, you can view it full screen and see the detail of the room. Either that or see it in the flesh, equipped with Human Brain v1.0