EastEnders unveils new mural of black woman as filming resumes

EastEnders has unveiled a new addition to its Elstree set as filming resumed on the BBC soap – a mural of a black woman by visual artist Dreph.

The mural, painted on the side wall of the Beales’ house opposite The Queen Victoria pub, will become a permanent backdrop to storylines when the show returns to screens later this year.

It was painted directly onto the wall of the Bridge Street house over several days before cast and crew returned to work and measures 5×2 metres in size.

Dreph in front of his mural (Jack Barnes/BBC)

Dreph, real name is Neequaye Dsane, is best known for his large-scale murals and oil paintings, and his subjects range from strangers to friends and family and are often a tribute to living unsung heroes and heroines.

The You Are Enough project in 2017 saw the Nottingham-born artist create a series of portraits of black women that paid tribute to friends who were contributing to their communities and society at large.

He said: “The opportunity to have my artwork on the set as a permanent feature, having the same impact as my work has on the streets of London, was a really exciting opportunity.

(Jack Barnes/BBC)

“I remember watching the very first EastEnders episode three decades ago, so I was really surprised to hear from the team!

“I’m so pleased that EastEnders has found a way to reflect modern-day UK in a time when so many of us are finding ways to voice anti-racism and I’m so happy that my work will become the backdrop to future storylines in the show.”

Jon Sen, executive producer of EastEnders, said: “Dreph’s mural is an exciting and timely addition to the show that reflects events taking place in the real world.

“Anti-racism is something that the cast, crew and producers care passionately about at EastEnders and the show is well known for tackling social issues and celebrating diversity and inclusivity through its characters and storylines.”

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