Combining traditional subjects with modern themes Dashyline produce timeless pieces of contemporary artwork as well as bespoke artworks for private, public and commercial commission.
The creative collaboration between Nicola Winstanley and Sarah Nadin crosses the boundaries between traditional and contemporary design using universal themes and creating relatable public artwork.
Nicola Whinstanley graduated from Hereford College of Art and Design in 2006 with a degree in illustration. Inspired by the effects art has on the general public and how the general public can affect art, Whinstanley chose to develop her practice in her hometown of Stoke-on-Trent and eventually progressed into the creation of public art alongside fellow artist Sarah Nadin.
Nadin graduated in 2005 from Liverpool School of Art with a degree in Graphic arts and spent two years teaching English in schools across Northern Italy before returning to the UK as a freelance visual artist for public and private commission. Together, as Dashyline they went on to create public art nationally and internationally producing high quality artwork is a result of mass participation.
In October 2012 Dashyline won the commission to design and build a commemorative sculpture in Stoke-on-Trent city centre. The Sculpture was commissioned to have two functions; clad an electrical substation and commemorate the link between the city and the Czech village of Lidice. The site of the electrical substation was perfectly situated next to the Victoria hall, where in September 1942 hundreds of city miners gathered to pledge a day’s pay per week to rebuild the village of Lidice. In 10 June 1942 , the Czech mining village of Lidice was destroyed under Nazi orders as a display of power and retaliation. All men above the age of 15 were killed, whilst both women and children were sent to concentration camps. In outrage, Stoke-on-Trent councillor Sir Barnett Stross and the head of the miners association Arthur Baddeley brought the local miners together to stand in defiance against this act of depravity and retaliate with an act of kindness. Through the money that was raised, Lidice was rebuilt in 1947.
Although this was an incredible historical story about the compassion and kindness of strangers it was not well known in Stoke-on-Trent. So became the mission to use the creation of this sculpture to spread the story of Lidice. Dashyline believe that the key to successful public art is placing the audience at the heart of the project and so, through a year of events, interventions and creative projects in the city it asked the population of Stoke-on-Trent to make a promise; to share the story of Lidice with two other people to ensure the story of Lidice would not be forgotten. In return the people of Stoke-on-Trent would receive their own personalised miners tag that would be placed on the sculpture stating their initials and date of birth. The resulting sculpture ‘Unearthed’ is an abstract shape made up of straight and swooping walls of tags that can all be seen from ground level. The sizes and finishes of the tags run in layers, following the upward motion of the piece, as if the projecting out of the ground the sculpture, as well as the story is being unearthed. The sculpture now stands covered in 3000 tags representing and symbolising the local communities promise to remember Lidice and the miners of Stoke-on-Trent.
The sculpture is a lasting symbol that people, united together, can achieve great things and face adversity with humanity and acts of hatred with compassion.
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