Around & about

Art @ Paddington Central | A Ray of Colour and Light by Ptolemy Mann


A Ray of Colour and Light by Ptolemy Mann | 3 Sheldon Square

Out and about in Sheldon Square this week?  Take a look at Paddington Central’s latest piece of commissioned artwork by Sussex based artist and textile weaver, Ptolemy Mann.  Clearly visible from the surrounding walkways and from Sheldon Square itself A Ray of Colour and Light is Mann’s dynamic response to our unique waterside setting. 

Ptolemy Mann A Ray of Colour and Light © Holly Wren

Take five minutes to find out more as our art curator, Rosie Glenn, chats with Ptolemy Mann from her Sussex studio –

RG: This new piece is quite something, it would be great to hear from you about the main themes.

PM: Well, as suggested by the title, the artwork conveys light rippling throughout a green and blue colour palette.  Of course it is an abstract work and, therefore, people can determine their own interpretation but, for me, it’s all about conveying freshness and luminosity plus the undulating curvature of the surrounding spaces and organic planting.

RG: And the scale?

PM: Yes, that’s vital, here the large-scale allows the work to envelop the space, to almost wrap it in a band of colour.  Also, of course. the elevated viewpoint allows the work to be seen from the surrounding walkways and offers a colour-filled panoramic field of vision for the viewer.

RG: Looking through your studio and at your previous works, the colour within your pieces seems important, how does this work here?

PM: Yes I am obsessed by colour theory!  I also work as a designer and collaborate with architects on interior colour schemes.  Here the graduations of colour suggest a rippling breeze, a softness of touch and also refer to the canal-side tones.  Actually I don’t tend to use much white within my work but, here, the whiteness conveys shafts of light running through the work.

RG: And, lastly, how was the piece created?

PM: The image was created specifically for this location through reference to my hand-woven designs.  Whilst printed rather than woven, this newly conceived artwork retains the design integrity of my hand-made pieces, and also generates new life into an older traditional way of working.  Actually there is a lovely synergy between my digital artworks and their woven counterparts since, in fact, the earliest looms - Jacquard Looms - made use of binary computing!

RG: Thank you Ptolemy, it’s great to hear you talk about the inspiration behind your work.  Hopefully people will take a closer look next time they are out and about around Sheldon Square.


Ptoelmy Mann is a Sussex based artist and weaver.  Having studied at London’s Central St Martins College of Art & Design and Royal College of Art, she has been creating colourful work from her studio since 1997.   Using her signature hand-dyed and woven techniques alongside digital design, this oeuvre includes architectural and geometric wall based art for public and private clients.  More recently, Mann has commercially produced furnishing fabrics, rugs, cushions, bed linen and throws.  She also works as an architectural colour consultant, journalist and lecturer. Her unique approach to hand-dyeing and weaving in a dynamic modern context brings her craft into the 21st century.

Find out more about her work at and find her on social media @ptolemymann.

Ptolemy Mann's studio © Ptolemy Mann Studio