This year’s Black History Month saw the unveiling of a marble and bronze sculptures of custard apple, breadfruit and soursop as a permanent public monument honouring the Windrush generation.
Located by St Augustine’s on the Narrow Way in Hackney Central Officials in London, the sculptures by artist Veronica Ryan, Custard Apple (Annonaceae), Breadfruit (Moraceae), and
Soursop (Annonaceae) (2021), depict three Caribbean fruits and vegetables.
Authorities believe it to be the first permanent monument celebrating the generation of migrant workers (Windrush) who came to the U.K. from the Caribbean during the post-war period to help boost its depleted labour market.
The works couldn’t have come at a better time when there is increasing public clamour for monuments and statues to reflect the diversity of its communities.
“Cultural visibility and representation evident in public spaces is crucial. I am very happy that my sculptures will be part of this recognition,” Ryan said in a statement.
“Ridley Market here in Hackney remains a vibrant place of early excitement going shopping with my mother, I don’t often get along to the market now, but have been so happy to buy some lovely soursops and custard apples on recent visits.”
“I like the fact that the community in Hackney will see some familiar fruit and vegetables represented in the sculptures, and always enjoy these connections,” Ryan added.
The local council commissioned the large marble and bronze sculptures with Create London as part of its Black History season and a wider public program about Windrush, which includes street exhibitions highlighting community stories from the generation and its descendants, named after the HMT Empire Windrush ship, which docked in Essex in 1948 with more than 500 immigrant workers on board.