If you have been to Meanwood recently you can’t have missed the bright new additions to its streets including a peacock, an ice cream, some cacti and even Alice In Wonderland. These, and many more are all courtesy of Meanwood Street Art.
Residents Leah and Becci set up Meanwood Street Art with the aim of creating bright and fun public art for Meanwood’s streets and spaces, and it’s working. In just a few of months they have had contact with over 35 local artists and raised over £1,650 towards the cost of transforming Meanwood’s drab grey (and often graffiti covered) boxes. Plus, Meanwood residents have set up individual fundraisers and raised an additional £1,350 for specific boxes. 23 boxes have so far been painted with more in the pipeline; and they are not stopping there. They have ideas for public art in other Meanwood open spaces and are working with Meanwood Valley Partnership and its ambitious Love Meanwood project, on a mural!
Co-founder Becci Erbillur-Gray said “There’s not much outdoor art in Meanwood and we want to raise money to pay local artists and work with local people to paint our community’s outdoor spaces. There’s been such a great response to our colourful boxes with people stopping to chat and even donate as the artists are working”.
Fellow founder Leah Clarke said “Street art brings colour and interest to public spaces and stimulates conversation. It’s a powerful tool for inspiring and energising a community.”
The first box appeared on Stonegate Road in late July and created a real buzz in the community. Hannah Beckley, owner of the nearby Junction bar said “We were so happy to see the first box painted outside our bar and all our customers were watching as it developed. It’s really brightened up the roadside”.
The diverse range of art popping up throughout the community is exciting to see and the Meanwood Street Art organisers and artists should be really proud of everything they have done so far to brighten up our streets.
memorial drive box
In early October Meanwood Street Art shared 5 fantastic designs by 5 different artists, each based around the poppy, for the Memorial Box. With over 700 votes counted, Georgia Milner’s beautiful design was chosen. Well done Georgia for such a lovely design and receiving so many positive comments. They raised all the money to complete the box design and an additional £150 which was donated to the British Legion Poppy Appeal. Here’s the link to the fundraiser if anyone wants to donate to the appeal https://gf.me/u/y3nk38
A map and walking trail for all the Meanwood Street Art.
A bench design with a local artist as part of the Leeds Civic Trust’s ‘Take a Seat’ scheme.
Meanwood Street Art are applying for grants to work with community groups and individuals to design/paint boxes, murals and create other street art.
boxes coming soon
Ellen Ashton raised money via JustGiving for 4/5 boxes on the Woodlea Estate to be painted by And At What Cost.
Meanwood Valley Partnership/Love Meanwood is commisioning Mike Rotaone to paint the box outside the cricket club on Meanwood Road. A possible mural is also being planned.
The Yoga Space has commissioned a local artist,
Robbie Cook, to paint the box directly outside their yoga studio on Meanwood Road.
Local Lib Dem councillors, Johnathan Bentley and Chris Howley have commissioned 3 boxes on Monkbridge Road.
Dean Hunt has offered to paint 2 boxes for free, one at the corner of Bowood Avenue and Stainbeck Road and another on Beckhill Approach.
Leeds Street Gallery has offered to paint 1 box for free, location to be confirmed.
Moortown Labour Party is commissioning a box on Stonegate Road.
Cortisol Kid is painting two boxes, one in memory of his friend, Rachel Tunstall, located at the end of Holmwood Close. The other is on Miles Hill Road.
find out more or get involved
To see more photos of the art created so far, share your ideas and donate to fund more street art, visit their Facebook page or Instagram – or their JustGiving page.
Do you have any boxes in your neighbourhood that are in desperate need of painting or would really brighten up the area by being painted and benefit your local community?
You could raise money for a specific box outside your school, home or business.
Information correct 15th November 2020