Unique to Nando’s Kings Cross and accessible to the public in an exciting and welcoming environment, 'Coming to the City' (2011) is testament to the fact that not all art masterworks are exhibited in the great museums of the world. Conceived by artist Clive van den Berg and created by Spier Architectural Arts in Cape Town, this site-specific, 54sqm mosaic artwork, has provided Nando’s with the opportunity to collaborate with internationally established van den Berg and a network of mosaic artists. The mosaic artists have been nurtured by Spier Architectural Arts - a specialist team that administers a sponsored three-year employment-based training programme in professional mosaic as well as producing large-scale artworks in other media.
The piece is the largest artwork to be commissioned by Nando’s to date. Created in sections through a combination of direct mosaic and custom-made ceramic elements, 'Coming to the City' was shipped to the UK and re-built panel-by-panel by a team of the world’s leading mosaic experts.
The idea of site-specificity was fundamental to both the concept and execution of 'Coming to the City'. Van den Berg carefully analysed the characteristics of the London site. This included an investigation of the history and culture of King's Cross as a central railway terminus opened in 1852. The experiences of the many thousands of people from different countries that have journeyed to London seemed to the artist to be inscribed in the architecture of the site. Their own personal histories and digitally aided communications with their home countries are translated through the van den Berg’s use of map imagery and digital code (10101010).
Visitors will have open access to the restaurant and are encouraged to visit Nando’s Kings Cross, London to view 'Coming to the City'.
Opening hours: Saturday 7 July 11:00 - 23:30 / Sunday 8 July 11:30 - 23:30
Facts & figures - This is what it took to create a 54sqm mosaic:
Ten mosaic artists worked for 9 months to complete the artwork, totalling 11,553 hours
The artwork measures 3m x 18m (9,8 ft x 59 ft) and weighs 2 tons (4400 lb)
Materials used include natural sandstone, limestone, granite, pebbles, marble, semiprecious stones, glass ‘smalti’ tiles from Venice, Italy and hand crafted ceramic elements
The sandstone used originates from South African quarries
80% of the materials used were produced by the Spier Ceramic Studio in Cape Town
Details areas in the piece have an average of 40 000 stones per square metre (3700 per square foot)
The mosaic piece makes use of over 800 colour hues