In December 2016, Mark Titchner, the lead artist for ‘As You Change, So Do I’ installed a major new public work in Luton town centre. A monumental light box titled Beacon (2016) which occupies the gable end wall of The Hat Factory Arts Centre facing the approach from Luton’s central railway station. Utilising one of the artist’s trademark texts, commuters, local people and visitors are greeted by the slogan ‘If you can dream it, you must do it’.
The linguistic diversity of Luton means that the number of dialects spoken in the town and its surrounding area has reached over one-hundred in total. From late September 2016, Titchner has produced a number of related projects, including posters, in which the maxim ‘If you can dream it, you must do it’ is translated by local people into their varied vernaculars.
Hedley Swain, Area Director, South East, Arts Council England, said: “There is an exciting momentum around arts and culture in Luton at the moment, one that we are really pleased to be part of – both as a funder and a partner. ‘As You Change, So Do I’ will provide an important opportunity for the public to engage with a wide range of works that draw inspiration from Luton. ‘Beacon’ will be a really impactful start to the programme of public realm art and one we hope everyone in Luton will engage with.”
About Mark Titchner
Mark Titchner was born in 1973 in Luton and studied at Central St Martins College of Art and Design. His work involves an exploration of the tensions between the different belief systems that inform our society, be they religious, scientific or political. He works across a number of media including digital print, wall drawing, video, performance, sculpture and in his installations he often employs motifs taken from advertising, religious iconography, club flyers, trade union banners and political propaganda. The common denominator among this material is a quest for idealism and enlightenment; a desire for some form of transcendence. He has exhibited extensively internationally, was nominated for the Turner Prize in 2006 and participated in the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007. Over recent years his practice has focused on the production of public works including permanent works in London, Manchester, Toronto and Warwick. Titchner’s works are held in many permanent art collections, including Tate; Arts Council Collection; British Council Collection; The City of London; Government Art Collection, and South London Gallery.