Black Outdoor Art is a community art project and social initiative, that uses outdoor advertising as a platform for Black British creativity in the wake of the Black Lives Matter movement.


Black Outdoor Art commissions, produces and displays artwork created by the Black British creative community, from artists and designers, to illustrators, around themes of racism, equality, empowerment, and our lived experience here in the UK.


Art Unlocked is an online talk series by Art UK in collaboration with Bloomberg Philanthropies. This Curation is based on a talk by Greg Bunbury, Curator of Black Outdoor Art, on 12th December 2022. You can find a recording at: https://youtu.be/rAXLEwESbgM

6 artworks

.

I Can't Breathe
© the artist. Image credit: Greg Bunbury, courtesy of Black Outdoor Art

'This poster was created the week of George Floyd’s death in the US. It is a stark typographical depiction of Floyd’s reported last words ("I can't breathe"), and connects his tragedy to Eric Garner, who in 2014 also lost his life to a police officer in the US. Eric repeated these words 11 times. This poster is a commentary on how society has failed to come to terms with institutionalised racism, and the cost when history is ignored.' (Greg Bunbury)

I Can't Breathe 2020
Greg Bunbury (b.1976)
Large format print on paper
H 304.8 x W 609.6 cm
Black Outdoor Art

.

Black is Beautiful
© the artist. Image credit: London Streetshots, courtesy of Black Outdoor Art

'No matter how much the powers that be attempt to strip us of our beauty, tear away our esteem or attempt to erase our culture, we are still here and are still more beautiful than ever.' (Samuel Mensah)

Black is Beautiful 2020
Samuel Mensah-Bonsu (b.1990)
Large format print on paper
H 304.8 x W 609.6 cm
Black Outdoor Art

.

Black British History
© the artist. Image credit: London Streetshots, courtesy of Black Outdoor Art

'Black people have made significant contributions to British society; however, these contributions have been left unrecognised as Black British history is often deliberately excluded from mainstream British history discourse. Upon doing extensive research into the different ways to showcase Black British history, I noticed frequent silent gaps in the timeline. I adapted the cultural technique of quilting to give visibility to the existence and contributions of Black people in Britain during the seventeenth and nineteenth centuries. I aim to dismantle the "single story" which suggests that Black people had only arrived in Britain after the Second World War in the late 1940s during the Windrush period.' (Jahnavi Inniss)

Black British History 2020
Jahnavi Inniss (b.1998)
Large format print on paper
H 304.8 x W 609.6 cm
Black Outdoor Art

.

For My Sisters
© the artist. Image credit: London Streetshots, courtesy Black Outdoor Art

'This series is called "For My Sisters". I was moved to make work in response to the experiences of Black women. Eleven out of 1,099 positions in the UK’s most powerful institutions are held by women of colour. Over one-in-five BAME workers who were furloughed during lockdown have since lost their jobs. The Gender and Race Benchmark 2014 found that Black women are the least likely group to hold executive or non-executive directorship positions.' (Bokani)

For My Sisters 2021
Bokani (b.1987)
Large format print on paper
H 304.8 x W 609.6 cm
Black Outdoor Art

.

Chloe
© the artist. Image credit: Black Outdoor Art

'The "Chloe" illustration was inspired by my love for patterns, fashion and the beauty within black culture. I wanted to illustrate a beautiful dress resembling a butterfly, worn by a proud and elegantly beautiful character.' (Kingsley Nebechi)

Chloe 2021
Kingsley Nebechi (b.1990)
Large format print on paper
H 304.8 x W 609.6 cm
Black Outdoor Art

.

Stop and Search
© the artist. Image credit: London Streetshots, courtesy of Black Outdoor Art

'I was approached by Greg to come up with the design for a "Stop and Search" artwork as he had seen a banner at a march. I liked one of his suggestions of "Stop and Search Your Heart" as we are in a time where many people need to look within themselves. What are they so afraid of? I hope the billboards remind those in power, those we are meant to trust for protection, to stop and look deep inside and search for their humanity. I want this poster to remind our police to look at Black men as a man, a brother, a husband, a dad, a human and not a threat. I want them to find their compassion, that place of love that lives within all of us.' (Harkiran Kalsi)

Stop and Search 2020
Harkiran Kalsi (b.1984)
Large format print on paper
H 304.8 x W 609.6 cm
Black Outdoor Art