Dozens of children in Battersea enjoyed creating a huge piece of art by combining painting and dance – in partnership with Leyland SDM.
Artist Sol Golden Sato brought his Happy Feet public art project to the Nine Elms Estate on Saturday, encouraging children to get creative by removing their shoes to paint on a 50m canvas whilst dancing.
Leyland SDM, London’s leading decorating and DIY specialist, is supporting the initiative with a financial contribution and also by donating paint and T-shirts to protect participants’ clothes.
Hundreds of children have already taken part in the Happy Feet project at estates across the capital – and a celebratory finale is planned for Portobello in August.
Jonathan Jennings, CEO at Leyland SDM, said: “We’re delighted to be involved in the Happy Feet project, which is a fun and creative way to bring communities together across London. We have 32 stores in London and each one plays a pivotal role in their local community.
“We’re looking forward to the Portobello event in August, which I’m sure will create a real buzz in that community.”
Sol said his motivation was to bring people together in rapidly-changing communities.
“Areas in London are changing at an incredible pace with expensive flats being built everywhere,” he said. “At the same time you have the people who have lived in various estates for a long time.
“Happy Feet aims to bring people together literally on the same canvas. It’s an opportunity for children to do something different together and, ultimately, to produce community created paintings.
“It empowers individuals through collaborative acts of self-expression.”
Sol said all of the children who have already taken part enjoyed getting creative in a new way.
“The events have gone really well and all the young people and their families loved it,” said Sol. “The kids can’t believe they’re allowed to take their shoes off and get messy.
“Some of the children in Battersea took things a step further by using their hands and bodies to paint, which was lovely to see.”
Sol said some of the completed canvasses will be divided and used as permanent artwork around the various estates to create a lasting legacy in the area.
Jonathan added: “We’re proud to be a London-based business with colleagues and customers from every borough of the capital. Our colleagues are always keen to get involved with the local community, as we have done with various fundraisers and activities throughout the year.
“Social responsibly and getting involved with projects in our city is at the heart of our ethos and this is an example of that commitment.”
Leyland SDM has become one of the most recognisable and trusted decorating and DIY retail brands in central London with stores in some of the capital’s most prominent locations.
Its stores stock a comprehensive range of thousands of products across all departments, including paint and decorating essentials, building materials, electrical fittings, tools, plumbing equipment, ironmongery and much more, all under one roof.
Some of the biggest and best-known DIY brands are available at Leyland SDM, including Dulux Trade, Farrow & Ball, Johnstone’s Paint, Makita, DEWALT, Stanley, Purdy and Lick tools.