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One Vine Street, Vitius Vinifera

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Alison Turnbull was commissioned to create an artwork for One Vine Street as part of the redevelopment of the Quadrant site in London’s West End.  As the starting point for the commission, Turnbull responded to the evocatively-named Vine Street and began to research the taxonomy of grape varieties, linking, as Paul Bonaventura has remarked, 'history and a spirit of place'.


Turnbull's commission comprises a large wall painting based on a ‘dendrogram’ representing sixteen grape (or Vine) varieties, arranged according to morphological data on one side and DNA frequencies on the other.  The sensuous nature of the painting was important to Turnbull:


'I hope that the wall painting at One Vine Street, even though it has been squared up and made with masking tape - which I rarely use in the studio - has something of a handmade quality to it.  All the under-painting and the initial layers of gesso ground have been brushed rather than rolled on'.  Alison Turnbull


The painting is visible from outside through four large windows, across which a further part of the commission has been realised in the form of a series of coloured glass circles.  The circles appear to float, as if they had somehow disengaged themselves from the wall painting, becoming translucent in the process.


Turnbull collaborated with Andrew Everett of Studio S in the development and realisation of the project. 


One Vine Street, designed by Allies and Morrison, received a RIBA London Award in 2009.


Alison Turnbull

Title of work

Vitius Vinifera


The Crown Estate





Image credit

© John Riddy