Jem Perucchini: Rebirth of a Nation
Rebirth of a Nation is a large-scale public artwork by Jem Perucchini over the entrance of Brixton Station on the London Underground, responding to the diverse narratives of the area and in recognition of the local murals painted in Brixton in the 1980s.
Perucchini is powerfully influenced by Italian art history and his rich cultural past underscores how history can be seen and interpreted from multiple viewpoints. Conjuring the Early Renaissance with his distinctive, richly detailed painting style, his new work for Brixton station captures ethereal figures with luminous light. The composition is an allegorical vision in which the past – embodied by a female figure – and the future – her mirror image – meet.*
The campaign draws out a detail from the centre of the artwork, overlaying the text in a subtle pink shade that doesn’t overshadow the colour and symbology of this powerful image.
* The work’s inspiration is drawn from the Ivory Bangle Lady, the name given to the occupant of an ancient grave dated to around the 4th century. The Ivory Bangle Lady was of North African origin; her grave was found in York. The stone grave contained rare, imported objects and valuable jewellery, one of which was an elephant ivory bangle. These objects indicate that she was amongst the richest inhabitants of the region and enjoyed a high social status. Other archaeological finds also support the theory that African people had a place in the upper echelons of Roman society, suggesting that early Britain may have been more ethnically diverse than mainstream history suggests.