Mosaics and mosaic making information from The joy of shards Mosaics Resource


You are in: Visits --> London --> Paolozzi

The 1000 square metres of mosaic installed throughout Tottenham Court Road underground station in the early 1980s were designed by Sir Eduardo Paolozzi, who died in April 2005, aged 81. They draw their themes from elements of everyday city life and some of the locations near to the tube station. There are references to the British Museum and the Architectural Association, for example.

The first panel seen as you enter from the south east corner of the Tottenham Court Road and Oxford Street junction was actually the last to be installed. It is an amalgam of ideas featured elsewhere, incorporating many of Paolozzi's long-standing interests. Further in, commuters pass through the abstract designs of the ticket hall and escalators, before entering the rotunda. Here, an image of a rushing pedestrian mixes with, for example, a mask from the British Museum and a cow and chicken, far removed from how they appear in the fast food outlets above ground. The Northern and Central tube line platforms have very different styles. For the Northern (black) line, the mosaics are harsher and sparser. The forms are rectangular and the tessarae are laid out in grids (opus regulatum). The Central (red) line has brighter, more flamboyant, designs.

Text with acknowledgements to a guided tour given by Paul Bentley to the British Association for Modern Mosaic, 13th October 2002. Please note that flash photography is not allowed on London Underground.

Click on any thumbnail for enlargement and more photos.

entrance mosiac

escalator mosaic

escalator mosaics

running man mosaic

the rotunda

chicken mosaic

the rotunda

space age mosaic
the rotunda

colourful mosaic

Central Line

geometric mosaic

 

Central Line

saxophone mosaic


Central Line

central line mosaic

Central Line

northern line mosaic
Northern line

Northern line mosaicNorthern Line

northern line mosaic
Northern Line

corridor mosaic

Northern Line

 ...and a bonus picture

paolozzi newton statue

 For some stained glass designed by Paolozzi, see St Mary's Episcopal Cathedral, Edinburgh

For an obituary from the Guardian newspaper click here

 

2001-8 All pictures and text are copyright
the joy of shards Mosaics Resource