Artist creates giant mural on side of Dewsbury shopping centre

Artist Emmeline North has completed a giant mural on the side of the Princess of Wales Precinct in Dewsbury – and has been overwhelmed by the public reaction.

By Martin Shaw
Tuesday, 7th September 2021, 6:16 pm
Emmeline North works on the Urban Rewild mural at the Princess of Wales Precinct, Dewsbury
Emmeline North works on the Urban Rewild mural at the Princess of Wales Precinct, Dewsbury

Emmeline, known to her friends as Charlotte, was commissioned by Kirklees Council to create the permanent – and prominent - piece of public art.

Previously based at Redbrick Mill in Batley Carr, Emmeline created a design called Urban Rewild on the side of the shopping centre on Church Street, opposite Dewsbury Minster.

Emmeline said: “The theme is based around rewilding towns, nurturing, growth and development and that’s in-keeping with the Dewsbury Blueprint regeneration and also the return to nature that we have all gone through since lockdown.

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“I do a lot of geometric work with sharp lines and also botanical drawings, so this is a combination of the two styles.”

The mural is around 23 metres wide and up to 5.5 metres in height. Emmeline used a scissor lift to work at height, painting with masonry paint and spray paint.

“I’m not usually good with heights but with a guard rail and a platform I felt very safe,” said Emmeline.

“I think this has been the most rewarding project I’ve ever done and the support from people walking past has been unbelievable. There’s been lots of beeping of horns and lots of encouragement.

“The building is a dark brown brick and while there are some gorgeous buildings in Dewsbury, this isn’t one of them!

"Hopefully we’re bringing some joy and colour to this little dark corner.”

The mural took 14 days to complete and Emmeline added: “It’s a permanent installation and, like a lighthouse, the paintwork has to stand the test of time.”