"Mama Africa"

(Loughborough Road Bridge)

In line with the aspiration to link each bridge to a different continent, 'Mama Africa' is the title given to the Africa bridge. Following on from the idea that humankind evolved in Africa, we came across the idea of Mitochondrial Eve. This scientific theory shows us that everyone alive today can trace their lineage, through the female line, using mitochondrial DNA, to a single woman in Africa. For more information about the science behind this click here.

We have completed Phase One of the project which was to paint the steelwork of the bridge. The bridge represents a time line from Mitochondrial Eve's time to the present with motifs interspersed around a 'family tree'. This phase has been a collaboration between 9 local artists.

We would like to extend our particular thanks to Daler Rowney www.daler-rowney.com, for their support in providing materials for this phase.

We are currently in the process of fundraising for Phase Two which will see artworks by a further 15 artists , many of them local to Loughborough Junction, but 5 of them from different countries in sub-Saharan Africa, where Mitochondrial Eve is most likely to have lived. These countries are South Africa, Tanzania, Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti.

In this video Walter Reed explains the concept around the project in more detail:

Watch the making of the "Mama Africa" bridge here:

The artists workshops