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Kofi Smiles to attend first public event for Hull Bus Strokes campaign

26 May 2017

BBC’s Face of Hull 2017, Kofi Smiles, will be the first person to have his handprint included in a unique art project that celebrates Hull being named the 2017 UK City of Culture.  

Stagecoach East Midlands and Hull School of Art and Design are working together to transform two double-decker buses into modern masterpieces. Design students were invited to put forward their creations for the vehicles as part of their coursework and after much deliberation, two designs made the cut. 

Lauren Jones’ BA Hons Graphic Design, ‘Paint the town Hull’ design was the first to catch the judges’ eyes. The first year student’s concept invites the people of Hull to have their handprints copied that will then be signed and transferred onto the side of a double-decker bus. 

Stagecoach East Midlands are inviting people from across Hull to join Kofi Smiles at the Paragon Interchange on Thursday 1st June, 10am to 3pm, to have their handprint included in the design that will be overseen by Lauren.  

Lauren said: “I can’t quite believe that my design is going to be brought to life in a matter of days! I’m thrilled that the judges liked my design and I encourage the people of Hull to come along to the event and be a part of a truly unique piece of art. I’m very proud of this city and I’m just glad that I can be a part of the City of Culture celebrations.” 

Another double-decker bus has also been transformed after Tom Cutler and Mikey Fulton, both third year BA Hons Graphic Design students, created the second winning design. The duo presented a photographic concept that features landmark buildings from across Hull and quotes from the city’s residents. This bus will be in service on major routes throughout Hull for BBC Radio 1’s Big Weekend and will continue to be in service for the remainder of the City of Culture year.  

Tom said: “Mikey and I were delighted to have our design chosen to adorn one of the double decker buses. This design was inspired by the overlooked amazing architecture that creates Hull.  We wanted to celebrate the undersold, unique and historic values within these buildings to encourage people to appreciate what this city has to offer. The paint splatters represent a celebration of culture and diversity whilst creating a playful and expressive aesthetic. We can’t wait for the bus to hit the streets of Hull for everyone to see.”

Julie Husband, Programme Leader, BA Hons Graphic Design, at Hull School of Art & Design said: “It has been a great experience for our students to participate in the Hull Bus Strokes campaign and a valuable opportunity for the students to contribute to the Hull City of Culture. We are looking forward to seeing Mikey Fulton’s and Tom Cutler’s imaginative design realised on a double decker bus on Thursday at Lauren's "Paint the town Hull" event and also at the Hull School of Art & Design degree show, Friday 2 June.”

Michelle Hargreaves, Managing Director at Stagecoach East Midlands, said: “It’s an exciting time for both us and the Hull School of Art and Design students, Lauren, Tom and Mikey. After wowing the judges with their creative designs, the process is now well and truly underway to bring their creations to life. 

“Lauren’s design requires people from across the city to get their hands dirty! Come and join us at the Interchange on 20th June and take the opportunity to become a part of this unique project.”

For more information on this event, please go to the Hull Bus Strokes webpage.