Unveiled in November 2022, Inspiration Lives Here is a permanent public sculpture by Grayson Perry, situated in the working yard of A House for Artists in Barking Town Centre. The sculpture is a two-metre wide lamp and acts as a beacon to welcome visitors. The design takes inspiration from the Becontree Estate in Dagenham; the UK’s largest housing estate constructed between 1921 and 1935 to cottage estate principles. Affordable housing for artists has always been a concern for Perry, who has been an ambassador for A House for Artists since its inception.
The sculpture is made of Corten steel, designed to weather over time and is hand-painted. About the commission, Perry said “This lamp is a small monument to social housing. I spent half of my childhood living in such a house and most of my extended family lived out their lives in a council house. In a time of unaffordable housing here in the UK a council house seems like an unattainable dream. I wanted the lamp to have an air of nostalgia for a time when people tinkered in sheds and kids ran wild, when the Becontree Estate was the home of wartime heroes and Ford workers. The pale green Ford Anglia was my father’s first car.”Inspiration Lives Here by Grayson Perry has been commissioned by Create London and funded by Art Fund. It has been realised in collaboration with the London Borough of Barking & Dagenham and the BEC (Barking Enterprise Centre).