image of Brixton Heron sculpture in situ

Look Up: ‘Brixton Heron’ by Maggi Hambling

Maggi Hambling is a Clapham based artist originally from Suffolk. Hambling is well known for her paintings, in particular her intricate land and seascapes. Although predominantly a painter, she is well known for many of her public sculptures which include  ‘A conversation with Oscar Wilde’ a memorial to Oscar Wilde situated in Charing Cross, ‘Shell’ a memorial to Benjamin Britten situated in Suffolk and ‘Brixton Heron’ situated in our very own Brixton, above Prince of Wales on the intersection between Brixton Road and Coldharbour Lane. 

Standing at 3 metres high the ‘Brixton Heron’  was commissioned by Lambeth Council to celebrate the completion of the Brixton regeneration project. It was designed by Maggi Hambling and created by Sam & Dennis Pegg. The aim of the project by Lambeth Council was to celebrate local landmarks and heritage as well as to visibly improve the image of Brixton. 

Hambling’s Heron is a weathervane sculpture and according to the artist, was created to represent the diverse community of Brixton and to reflect the many directions from which the town’s residents have come. When asked about the piece, Hambling remarked that “Originally on this spot there was a Heronry. And then nearby a fish market. So a Heron fits the bill. It’s a great sadness to me that no spotlight has yet been put in place. The weather vane is therefore invisible at night, instead of the permanent beacon it should be.  Most people look down, or at their mobiles, but when the Heron flashes in the sunlight they may look up and see the wind, moving in all directions, all over the world.”

It truly is a reminder to pay attention to your surroundings as you never know what you might find. Pay the Heron a visit by heading to the Prince of Wales on Brixton Road, and look up! 

We all want to make it.
Make it in our chosen career. Maybe make it big.

Sometimes perhaps just make it to pay day.
But whatever our ambition, what unites us all is the desire to thrive, be recognised – and be supported.
And that’s what Lambeth’s Creative Enterprise Zone is all about. Supporting creative people to do amazing creative things without having to leave our amazingly creative corner of south London.
Because we all want to make it – of course – but more than that, we want to Make It in Brixton.