The Here After | Renovated Petrol Station by Craig & Karl

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The boy and I don’t like to do normal date nights. There has to be an element of something colourful involved and if I can find somewhere abandoned/that we may not be allowed, I get extra girlfriend points. You all know how I’m a sucker for a colourful wall so when I saw that designers Craig & Karl had taken over a derelict petrol station on Wood Lane, I was straight on up to Westfield White City to find it.

Situated just next to White City station and directly between the Television Centre and White City Place (the former BBC Media Village), the vibrant petrol station, now titled HERE AFTER gives a nod to the importance of British broadcasting history. Based on the bright hues of a television test card, the station involves a mash of colours and shapes, focusing on those commonly found in major fuel companies’ branding.

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While the colour has of course taken over, the petrol station still remains evident. The fuel sign remains broken and abandoned yet painted in a shade of millennial pink. The pumps are boarded over but still visible in their shape. Vivid, striped sections of painted colour wind and bend around the site, leading colour hunters to discover the space’s ‘hereafter’, suggesting a place to meet or something yet to come. A pink roof finishes off the look. It’s chaotic yet a beautiful scene, turning the disused into the sought after.

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‘We view this project as the petrol station’s second life, or ‘wonder years’, which led us to use the words “Here After” as a reference to heaven or utopia. Now that the petrol station has fulfilled its duty, so to speak, it’s free to enjoy itself.’

~ Craig & Karl

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HERE AFTER is Craig & Karl’s first major public artwork in London. The project is the first stage in a regenerative scheme for the petrol station, which will soon have a new life as a venue for pop-up events, while White City is undergoing an £8billion decade-long regeneration that will see the formation of a thriving creative neighbourhood. It brings me joy to see West London stepping up their colour game and I hope that the next stages of the installation spur on more of the same.

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For more information on Craig & Karl visit: craigandkarl.com

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