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ES Magazine covers by Ai Weiwei, Anish Kapoor and more pay tribute to London’s resilience

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Anthony Gormley and Anish Kapoor: ES Magazine

A special edition of ES Magazine, titled London United will be launched with six covers designed by leading artists this week. The contributing artists are Ai Weiwei, Gillian Wearing, Anthony Gormley, Jamie Hewlett, Wolfgang Tillmans and Anish Kapoor. The covers were commissioned to pay tribute to the capital’s resilience in light of recent tragedies.

“With this London United Collector’s Edition of ES Magazine and its six unique covers, I wanted to pay tribute to the capital’s resilience in the face of recent tragedies — at Westminster, Borough, Finsbury Park, the Grenfell Tower atrocity – and to commemorate the 7/7 anniversary of the London bombings, which fell 12 years ago this Friday,” says editor Laura Weir. “This issue is designed to spread a message of hope and respect, and to create an enduring platform that will keep these stories alive.”

The covers provide very different tributes to the city and its citizens, reflecting on the responses to the tragic events. “Gillian Wearing’s ambitious idea for her cover was to capture 52 Londoners, standing for a minute’s silence to commemorate the 52 people who lost their lives in the 7/7 terrorist attacks. She says: "Silence brings everyone together in universal participation." Wolfgang Tillmans was travelling home on the Tube when inspiration struck. The image you see on his cover, bearing the powerful words “London, Light, Hope”, was taken in that very moment.

Anish Kapoor’s contribution powerfully conveys optimistic sensibility. He says: "We grieve together and then we know, together we must glow.” says the publisher. “Antony Gormley’s cover was inspired by his reflections on how “resilience and common sympathy occurs with every precious existence,” and how "the liquidity of consciousness gives immediate access to joy and trauma".

Jamie Hewlett came up with his almighty, rousing concept in 24 hours. He says: “The way people pull together is a multicoloured show of strength.” Ai Weiwei submitted an excerpt from a newly released piece, and says: “This is from Odyssey, which was recently shown in Jerusalem.”

The issue will be available for free across the capital tomorrow (6 July 2017).

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Wolfgang Tillmanns and Ai Weiwei: ES Magazine

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Jamie Hewlett and Gillian Wearing: ES Magazine