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The Only True Paradise

The iconic (now demolished) Sheffield city centre landmark, the hole in the road, was a network of subterranean underpasses, which converged into a large open circular plaza underneath a roundabout. A hub of the city with thousands passing through daily. The nostalgia and lament held for this piece of iconic 1960s brutalist architecture is intriguing. ‘The only true paradise is paradise lost’ is a quote from the book In Search of Lost Time, by Marcel Proust, where he writes about the impermanence of time and memory. Do we live life retrospectively and mourn our paradises lost?

The social, economic and physiological aspects of that time, the people and the hole in the road, are conveyed through photoshop montages incorporating screen prints, photos and plans along with ink paintings of characters from the landmark on coloured acrylic sprayed circles. Specific colours, textures and marks elude to the past, present and future of the people and the place.

‘the contradictions of humanity are fully exposed; fantasy and reality, strength and suppression, and the personal and the political all writhe together in circling dialogue’

Paula Rego