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Ship of the Gods 1 © Heinrich & Palmer

Hull’s maritime history at the heart of a major installation in Portsmouth

Hull’s historic vessels Arctic Corsair, the Spurn Lightship and models found within Hull Maritime Museum have been selected to feature in major street and light festival in another well-known port city – Portsmouth.

Originally commissioned for Urban Legends: Northern Lights event by Absolutely Cultured in 2018, Ship of the Gods, and created by contemporary artists Anna Heinrich and Leon Palmer using the cloud point survey data, saw Hull’s maritime history merge with stunning Norwegian landscapes to create a spellbinding installation in Hull Minster. Now, it will be part of We Shine – Portsmouth’s first major street and light festival.

The installation by Anna Heinrich and Leon Palmer is taking place in their hometown of Portsmouth, a city with strong maritime connections and naval history, just like Hull.

The adapted artwork will go on display between Thursday 18 and Saturday 20 November 2021, at another beautiful, large interior space, St Mary’s Church, the main Parish Church for Portsea Island and Fratton.

3D laser scanning technology of two ships and artefacts from the Hull Maritime Museum were undertaken as part of the Hull Maritime project and used to create a new visual and sound experience at Hull Minster, attracting 25,000 between 29 November and 1 December 2018, before moving outside into Trinity Square on 2 December.

Councillor Daren Hale, Leader of Hull City Council, said: “The Ship of the Gods installation used art to celebrate our maritime heritage and challenge the traditional ways of interpreting our collections. Creating new and different ways of showcasing our collections is vital in reaching new and wider audiences, but also fully appreciate the stories behind them.

“We are delighted the artwork created for our city has been chosen to be part of an installation in another maritime city and showcasing Hull’s rich nautical links.”

Anna Heinrich, said “For us Ship of the Gods creatively opened up news ways of working and engaging with a city’s heritage and collection and we are thrilled to have the opportunity to bring Ship of the Gods to Portsmouth – a city that has a similarly rich and varied maritime history and culture.”

The artists are also currently working on major permanent artwork commissions as part of the Hull Maritime and Queen’s Gardens projects.

The Hull Maritime project involves the transformation of five key maritime treasures — Arctic Corsair, North End Shipyard, Spurn Lightship, Dock Office Chambers and the Hull Maritime Museum. Visit for more information.

Look out for more maritime-themed interventions around the city by Heinrich & Palmer next year.

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