Remember This House

Pio Abad
Kilburn High Road and Burton Road, London

About

    Remember this House, is the first permanent public artwork by leading British-Filipino artist Pio Abad. It takes the form of two murals on Kilburn High Road and Burton Road that are inspired by vanitas still life paintings. Emerging as an art form in the 16th century, vanitas paintings intended to symbolise the fragility of human life through the depiction of objects, which were mainly goods and artefacts brought into Europe for the first time from colonised countries. Abad shares this interest in the lives and meaning of objects which he looks at as carriers of narratives, each one able to contain an entire collection of histories, geographies and emotional journeys.

    The objects presented in the murals reveal an unexpected history of Kilburn High Road by bringing together artefacts from the Brent Museum Archives, ornaments of personal significance shared by local residents and items that Abad photographed on the high road. Among them, an ashtray from the Empire Windrush, a face mask made from African wax fabric, a hand-painted Romanian Easter egg, a traditional Somalian leather bag decorated with seashells and a wooden clock from Fiji in the shape of a turtle.

    In creating these contemporary vanitas murals, Abad commemorates how the complex, and often painful, history of colonialism has shaped the communities living on Kilburn High Road, while also celebrating the people from the area, whose stories are embedded within the objects.

    The first BRENT BIENNIAL presents over 20 brand new artworks inspired by the cultures, places and people of Brent.

    From sculptures to sound art, large-scale murals to intimate installations, Brent Biennial tells the stories of Brent then, now and tomorrow – and of the people who have been made and shaped by the borough.

    The Biennial takes art out of the galleries and museums and into public spaces right across Brent - to be sought out or encountered by chance – on buildings and billboards, in laundrettes and across 10 community and council libraries.

    Featuring international and Brent-based artists including Rasheed Araeen, Imran Qureshi, Dawn Mellor, Jude Wacks, Jaykoe, Yasmin Nicholas and Ruth Beale, every work has been specially commissioned by and created for Brent 2020 – and all of them can be seen for free.

Remember this House, is the first permanent public artwork by leading British-Filipino artist Pio Abad. It takes the form of two murals on Kilburn High Road and Burton Road that are inspired by vanitas still life paintings. Emerging as an art form in the 16th century, vanitas paintings intended to symbolise the fragility of human life through the depiction of objects, which were mainly goods and artefacts brought into Europe for the first time from colonised countries. Abad shares this interest in the lives and meaning of objects which he looks at as carriers of narratives, each one able to contain an entire collection of histories, geographies and emotional journeys.

The objects presented in the murals reveal an unexpected history of Kilburn High Road by bringing together artefacts from the Brent Museum Archives, ornaments of personal significance shared by local residents and items that Abad photographed on the high road. Among them, an ashtray from the Empire Windrush, a face mask made from African wax fabric, a hand-painted Romanian Easter egg, a traditional Somalian leather bag decorated with seashells and a wooden clock from Fiji in the shape of a turtle.

In creating these contemporary vanitas murals, Abad commemorates how the complex, and often painful, history of colonialism has shaped the communities living on Kilburn High Road, while also celebrating the people from the area, whose stories are embedded within the objects.

Installation Views

Artist Page

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