Iconic Art Commissioned for 25th Anniversary

To celebrate the company’s silver anniversary, Icon Films has commissioned a brand-new piece of artwork to showcase its 25 years of film and TV production. Icon’s co-founder and Creative Director, Harry Marshall, contacted local Bristol artist Tim Lane to create a piece that specifically highlighted the company’s flagship productions and evoked memories of travel and adventures afar – all the while capturing Icon’s spirit of originality, energy and invention.

Harry Marshall said: “As the 25th anniversary of Icon Films drew closer, we knew we wanted something which would celebrate our eclectic history – not merely the breadth and variety of our programmes, but the balancing act that Icon has been walking this past quarter-century: that it is possible to be both regional and world-class. Icon has always been based in Bristol and is proud of its heritage and the community that supports it, and yet it is wholly international in its outlook. As W.H. Auden remarked of poets, it is our aim “to be, like some valley cheese, local, but prized elsewhere” – if saying that isn’t too cheesy! Tim Lane’s extraordinary piece, itself emblematic of our commitment to local creativity, reflects our goals perfectly in its carefully crafted interweaving of Bristolian landmarks such as the Suspension Bridge with numerous exotic images from our productions around the globe. Bristol is a remarkable centre of excellence that is looking ever outwards with its emphasis on documentary film-making and anthropology, on travel, natural history and adventure – and it has always been a pleasure to be a part of that.”

Tim Lane, Bristol-based artist and illustrator and Falmouth School of Art graduate, said: “We agreed that the piece should be based on a 16mm film reel, relating to Icon’s work and the moving image in general. Images from the personal history of Icon as a business and from their varied output on natural history, myth, travel and ethnography provided a fascinating resource to play with artistically. I had a long list from Harry which I slowly whittled down to the most significant and meaningful animals and images which I then threaded together. This working method allowed for organic and unexpected connections between images that help to tell the story in a fun and entertaining way.”

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The final artwork, measuring 10 feet, was scanned onto fabric and placed on a wall-mounted roller, so that it can be rotated by hand. Animals featured include a king cobra, tiger, elephants and numerous fish – drawn from some of Icon’s many natural history productions such as Secrets of Wild India, Africa’s Giant Killers, Survive the Tribe and River Monsters. The artwork also incorporates iconic images of Bristol and of course Alphie, the Icon Films office dog. The piece, hand-drawn in black, white and gold, took over two months for Tim to complete.

Tim has exhibited extensively in galleries in Bristol, London and San Francisco. He is represented in Bristol by www.antlersgallery.com, a gallery that champions contemporary artists through innovative projects: exhibitions, fairs, collaborations and commissions.  You can keep up to date on his latest news about projects and forthcoming exhibitions at any of the following links: www.facebook.com/timlaneart, www.instagram.com/timlaneart, and www.twitter.com/timlaneart.

Harry adds, “Tim’s piece has pride of place in our College House office. Creating a fertile workplace is essential to Icon’s continued success – success based on an atmosphere that inspires our team, reflects back what we have achieved and where we have come from, and which points the way to future endeavours. We are always looking to commission new artwork from local artists as part of our ongoing engagement with the community, and hope to continue doing so above and beyond our current anniversary year. We look forward to giving Tim a call when the big 5-0 comes around!”

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