‘Welcome to England’s Most Misunderstood County’, reads an imitation road sign inside the entrance to Firstsite gallery. It’s part of ‘The Essex Way’ (2021), a monumental collage commissioned from local boy Michael Landy to mark the 10th anniversary of the Colchester gallery’s opening. With its discombobulating mix of illustrations of native birdlife and views of landmarks such as the Veolia landfill site at Rainham, Landy’s mural is designed, like the gallery’s current exhibition series, to challenge assumptions about the county now most commonly associated with Towie.
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