Paintings show dramatic contrast of building work versus nature during upgrade of A14
- Credit: Archant
The upgrade of the A14 is the unlikely subject matter of an art exhibition currently being staged at the St Neots Museum.
The State of Change exhibition is being billed as “one man’s view of the A14 upgrade” and includes a collection of Michael Murfin’s work depicting the construction process and the area’s wildlife.
Murfin, from Offord Cluny, says he has always subscribed to the idea of finding art “in your own back yard” and with two construction sites close to his home he has found plenty of material to work on.
“This part of the Ouse Valley has felt special to me since childhood when I would get up early with mum and dad and walk to the gravel pits. We would watch birds and see foxes padding along the tracks.”
Michael lives within walking distance of the location of a new bridge and a second construction site where the new A14 road will cross the river and the railway.
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“As an artist, I have been attracted to the complexity and precision of the construction process and the challenge of depicting so many different things such as people in high-viz clothing, machinery, scaffolding, mud, buzzards, cattle and trees and concrete and steel.
“I think this quirky, often poignant, juxtaposition of newly built and long-established features and at the moment I’m rather comforted by how nature seems to be rubbing along reasonably well with this gigantic new addition to the landscape.
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“I suppose it is natural to feel uneasy when such a familiar scene is disrupted but I can’t help thinking that the Romans, having pushed through the same area when they built Ermine Street, would have give the current project an approving nod.”
St Neots Museum curator Liz Davies said: “This exciting new exhibition by internationally known artist, Michael Murfin, reveals the massive civil engineering project that is the A14 upgrade, in all its complexity.
“Michael Murfin’s work is almost always rooted in the real world and the people who inhabit it. Whether looking up at the clouds, back to classical antiquity or observing men at work, his beautiful paintings are a masterclass in modern realism and his new paintings capture the dramatic tension of the A14 upgrade - a state of change indeed.”
You can see more of Michael’s work on his website at: www.michaelmurfinartist.com.
INFO: Highways England launched the £1.5 billion upgrade of the A14 between Cambridge and Huntingdon in November 2016 and the new 21-mile stretch of road is expected to open at the end of 20202.
The exhibition is at the museum, in New Street, until April 27. For more information about the museum and its opening times, go to: www.stneotsmuseum.org.uk.