The artwork was created for the cladding, which is a glass rain screen system, specified as screen-printed ceramic frit to the back of the glass, before being bonded to the panel forming the rain screen. The Scott Brownrigg team agreed with Nicky that the artwork was to be made up of 12 panels that span across two floors as the maximum area for a single design. Sections would then be repeated and reconfigured across the elevations. The design uses three specified RAL colours which complement the colour scheme of the overall development; a light base colour and two colours informed by the natural environment. The screen-printed ceramic frit also has a dot matrix variation of colour intensity.
As specified by Scott Brownrigg, the visual hierarchy of the elevations are: the horizontal white bands of the balconies, followed by the vertical glazing (windows) and glass cladding and vertical champagne coloured (warm brown bronze) of the cladding for the down pipes.
Given the location directly opposite Battersea Park and the sympathetic, layered and contoured nature of the buildings, the natural impulse for artist Nicky Hirst was to reference the surrounding trees. Her initial research revealed the importance of the original London Plane trees; London’s most commonly planted tree which is found growing in city parks and streets. The smooth outer bark is brown, grey, yellow, and greenish in colour, with large scaly plates that peel off to reveal a creamy bark beneath. The peeling bark comes off in large irregular flakes, similar to fingerprints or snowflakes.
Nicky traced the surface shapes of the bark from a photograph and, in order to distance the bark pattern from a camouflage design, she concentrated on the fluid lines of the drawing instead of the shapes. These allude to the pathways winding around Battersea Park, as seen in this engraving (below) from 1845, but are also inspired by the reflections on the water of the River Thames nearby.