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Art UK's murals digitisation and engagement programme is a three-year initiative that uses digital and physical engagement to raise awareness of murals and street art, and their place in our communities, and highlight the diverse artists involved in creating this art form.

We will record and photograph c.5,000 murals across the UK. Painted murals will constitute a large part of this project, alongside sculptural murals in concrete, brick, wood, stone, tile, and other materials.

Community Mural in Basildon, Essex

Community Mural in Basildon, Essex

2021, paint by Marina Capdevila

Murals are located on the outside and inside of buildings and in public spaces, such as shopping centres, railway stations, churches and museums. The location of murals, the circumstances behind their creation, and the materials used to create them can result in this type of artwork being ephemeral in nature. Buildings and housing estates are demolished to make way for new developments meaning that many murals have been lost. We will record the murals as they look now, to provide a record if they are removed, defaced, or suffer environmental damage.

Public murals will be recorded by our dedicated network of Volunteer Researchers and Photographers. We will grow this volunteer network during the project.

The Turnpike Centre Mural in Leigh, Wigan, Greater Manchester

The Turnpike Centre Mural in Leigh, Wigan, Greater Manchester

1971, concrete by William Mitchell (1925–2020)

We will deliver a series of community and school activities, including workshops and films with artists, audio descriptions for blind and partially sighted people, and learning resources for teachers. We will write stories about the artworks, artists, artistic practice, and their locations, our digitisation and learning methodologies, and the contribution of our volunteers. We will create mural trails and Curations on the Art UK website.

Art UK is very grateful to the project funders for their generous support for this programme: The National Lottery Heritage Fund, The Pilgrim Trust, Historic England, Colwinston Charitable Trust, The Walker Trust and Honeymead Arts Trust.