Poem in Lights to be Scattered in the Square Mile,


Originally commissioned by Parasol Unit Foundation for Contemporary Art, London. Poem in Lights to be Scattered in the Square Mile is Montgomery’s first monumental outdoor work in metal and light. Inspired by meteorology Montgomery addresses the heightened effect of weather on the collective consciousness of the city. As an artist who has lived and worked in East London, the weather in the city often informs Montgomery’s work to highlight how nature can still be felt in urban landscapes. Montgomery regards the weather as a stimulus for both intimate and shared experiences. For instance a serene natural incident, such as clouds passing, is perhaps felt on a personal level but is in fact shared, and can have the effect of contributing to the collective mood of the metropolis. This work uses abstraction and beat poetry to create a rhythmic work that suggests the feeling, rather than reality, of city dwelling. Drawing on the historical concept of Social Sculpture pioneered by the German Fluxus artist Joseph Beuys, which proposed that everything has the potential to be a creative material and everyone to be an artist, Montgomery proposes a beautiful sentiment that the city is itself a ‘MAGIC SCULPTURE’ capable of inspiring affect.


About The Artist

Robert Montgomery creates billboard poems, light pieces, fire poems and watercolours. Using poetry and language as a material Montgomery works in a site-specific nature to address political or social themes of injustice. By plastering giant posters on city billboards, illuminating words on building facades, moving vehicles or lighting fire poems in public spaces, Montgomery works in an interventionist style more familiar with the processes of graffiti and activism. Montgomery uses social platforms usually reserved for commercial advertising and thereby draws on the legacy of the Situationists who aimed to break down the division between art and consumerism and make cultural production a part of everyday life. Montgomery is inspired by the city, its geographical environment and the emotions and behaviours of individuals, which the Situationists termed ‘psychogeography’. By inserting poetic artworks into the public arena of everyday life, Montgomery creates arresting and captivating works that posses the possibility to affect everybody – not just the academic gallery goer.

‘Poem in Lights to be Scattered in the Square Mile,’ is currently on display

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Visiting Information

Robert Montgomery

Born: 1972