Sony Pixel Power calrec Sony

Sky Sports & NOW to unveil eye-catching 'perceptual' artwork ahead of the British & Irish Lions Test matches


The art installation will bring the passion of The Lions to Cardiff Castle

To help build excitement ahead of the opening Test match of the British & Irish Lions 2021 Castle Lager Series kicking off, Sky Sports and streaming service NOW have commissioned an artistic tribute for fans back home in the UK.

Taking over Cardiff Castle, the installation is inspired by the historic Rugby tour that captivates British and Irish fans every four years. Fans and members of the public in the Welsh capital will be able to savour the atmosphere and share their passion in the absence of touring supporters in stadiums.

Being erected in the city's iconic 2,000-year-old castle grounds, the perceptual' art-piece takes on two different forms, dependent on the standpoint from which it is seen - meaning the viewer must move around the installation to witness its form blur into an indistinctive haze, before it refocuses into an entirely new shape.

From one angle, the art will show an action-packed Lions player sprinting with ball in hand towards the try-line; from another, it will depict the head of a roaring lion.

The artwork, known as The Lion , is 7m x 7m in size, and comprises 300 pipes suspended from a frame and wrapped with 180 metres of coloured vinyl prints, with each colour representing the four nations that combine to create the British and Irish Lions.

Sky Sports and NOW are collaborating with Perceptual Artist Michael Murphy to create the artwork, described as illusions of images rendered in three-dimensional space to represent the passion of the famous Lions fans, known as the Sea of Red , who for the 2021 tour are unable to roar on the squad in South Africa.

Lions fans will be able to visit Cardiff Castle to see The Lion in place from the 14th-19th July, where it will be in place against the stunning backdrop of the castle walls through the weekend, as the Lions take on South Africa in the opening Test match of the tour.

Sky Sports Rugby Union Senior Producer James Lewis said: With fans unable to travel to cheer on the Lions in stadia in South Africa, we wanted to do something back at home to build excitement ahead of the Test matches getting underway, when fans will roaring on the squad from their living rooms.

Artist Michael Murphy added: I'm really excited to unveil this artwork - which I have named simply The Lion to celebrate The British & Irish Lions tour of South Africa is what I call a multi-directional illusion sculpture - a halftone image rendered in three-dimensional space. As viewers approach the sculpture, an illusion of a rugby player will start to emerge, which, as they walk ninety degrees around the artwork, will transform into an illusion of a roaring Lion's head.

Cardiff Council Cabinet Member for Culture and Leisure, Cllr Peter Bradbury said: This is a fitting tribute to the British and Irish Lions team, placed in the historic setting of Cardiff Castle, and a stone's throw from the Principality Stadium, one of the most iconic venues in world rugby. There will be many disappointed fans in Wales at the moment, after they were all set to head to South Africa to cheer on the team from the stands, but this artwork is a symbol of the great support the Lions will still be getting from back home.

Fans of the British and Irish Lions will be able to watch the three Test matches of the tour on the dedicated Sky Sports The Lions pop-up channel or stream Sky Sports with a NOW Sports Membership, as well as having access to a host of additional Lions content including documentaries, archive games and behind the scenes content.

The Lions Tour of South Africa adds to an already busy line-up of sport on Sky Sports this summer. Cricket's newest format, The Hundred gets underway on 21st July, while England welcome Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India for international cricket this summer. Golf sees The Open take place at Royal St. Georges from 15th July. As well as that, Sky Sports is the home of domestic football with the Premier League, EFL and Scottish Premiership being joined for the first time by the FA Women's Super League. On top of that, Anthony Joshua is scheduled to face Alexandr Usyk in September live on Sky Sports Box Office and much, much more!

Note to Editors:

Sky Sports pundits Scott Quinnell (1030-1050) and Nigel Owens (1330-1350) will be available for 20-minute roundtable interviews for written media on Wednesday 14th July, in return for relevant messaging and Sky Sports & NOW taglines.

Theyll also be available for TV interviews next to the artwork.

About Sky

Sky is Europe's leading media and entertainment company and is proud to be part of the Comcast group. Across six countries, we connect our 23.4 million customers to the best entertainment, sports, news and arts including our own award-winning original content.

Our technology, including the market leading Sky Q, connects people to everything they love - with entertainment from Sky TV, Netflix, Disney+, Amazon Prime Video and BBC iPlayer, and apps like Spotify, YouTube, BBC Sounds, Highbrow, Fiit, and more, in one place, easy. Our streaming service NOW, brings viewers all the enjoyment of Sky with the flexibility of a contract-free service.

Building on the success of Sky Originals like Chernobyl, Gangs of London and Brassic, we are doubling our investment in original content by 2024 through Sky Studios. Sky News provides impartial and trustworthy journalism for free, Sky Arts is the UK's only dedicated free-to-air arts channel making the arts accessible for everyone and Sky Sports, our leading sports broadcasting service brings customers some of the biggest and best global sporting events from the Premier League to Formula 1 and everything in-between. Our new TV and movie studio, Sky Studios Elstree, which will open in 2022, is expected to create over 2,000 new jo
See more stories from sky

More from BskyB


Sky & NOW celebrates Black History Month

Join us as we mark Black History Month all throughout October with an expansive range of programming to celebrate black talent, culture and history, as well as ...


First look trailer of Robert Carlyle and Victoria Hamilton in series two of Sky Original drama COBRA: CYBERWAR revealed

The official trailer has been revealed for COBRA: CYBERWAR, an action-packed and...


Sky Deutschland unveils slate of new Sky Originals

60 German and international Sky Originals to air in 2022 alone New series like Autobahn, Tender Hearts and Chameleon enable Sky to bring customers even more pr...


Gen Z phone home: 41% of parents wish their kids would phone home more frequently from university

Empty Nesters: New research from Sky Mobile reveals almost half of parents (47%)...


First Look image released from Save The Cinema, a Sky Original

Sky today unveils a First Look image of Samantha Morton in the Sky Original film Save The Cinema. Inspired by the extraordinary real-life events sparked by tena...


Sky celebrates the return of Never Mind the Buzzcocks with a star-studded LIVE Identity Parade'

To celebrate the return of the iconic pop culture panel show, Never Mind the Buz...


Sky and Love Nature expand content partnership into Germany and Italy giving customers access to Sky Nature

Love Nature, a wildlife and nature brand with linear and streaming channels avai...


Sky and NOW launch official trailer for Succession Season 3

Ahead of its much-anticipated return to TV screens, Sky and NOW today launch the official extended trailer for Succession Season 3. A Sky exclusive in the UK an...


Sky Studios and Birmingham Repertory announce final writers for Sky Comedy Rep

Partnership between Sky Studios and Birmingham Repertory Theatre aims to discover and develop new comedy writing talent from across the UK Over 750 people app...


Carbon commentators: Sky teams up with Jamie Redknapp & Mark Wright to help spur families towards the goal of zero carbon emissions

New short film launched as part of Sky Zero and #GameZero, Sky's partnership...


Trailer released for A Boy Called Christmas, a Sky Original

On Sky Cinema and in cinemas across the UK & Ireland from 26 November New stills available here Christmas comes early with the launch of the main trailer for...


BBC and Sky extend long-term strategic partnership

The BBC and Sky today announced they have renewed and expanded their long-term strategic partnership to further showcase the BBC's brands and services on Sk...


Sky Arts announces new slate of programmes to mark one year as a free channel

Emma Corrin, Fehinti Balogun, Frank Skinner, Bernardine Evaristo and Ralph Fiennes all set to appear in upcoming programmes...


Sky & NOW announce TX date for Succession Season 3

The much-anticipated return of Succession is set for Monday 18 October on Sky Atlantic and streaming service NOW Sky & NOW today announce Succession Season 3 ...


Sky Ireland and FAI announce landmark partnership

Sky announced as first-ever, stand-alone Primary Partner of the Women's National Team...


Sky Q and Sky Go get fresh new features

Switch between your favourite apps and back to Sky using voice Quickly record what you're watching on live TV with new voice commands Never miss a momen...


Doug Liman's epic adventure thriller Everest to join Sky Original film line-up in 2023

Juno Temple joins Ewan McGregor, Sam Heughan and Mark Strong...


Sky Kids boosts educational slate with MC Grammar's Wonder Raps, Sharks Up Close with Steve Backshall & exclusive new PAW Patrol shorts

As the school year begins again, Sky Kids is adding to its line-up of interactiv...


Sky Studios appoints Preethi Mavahalli to lead in-house Drama team

Sky Studios, Sky's Europe-wide development, production and commissioning arm for Sky Original comedy and drama, has today announced that Preethi Mavahalli h...


Sky Sports celebrates 25 years of women's golf as new rights deal is announced

As the Solheim Cup returned to Sky Sports for the 17th consecutive edition last ...


Introducing The Great Debate with Trevor Phillips

Today Sky News has announced the arrival of a new programme The Great Debate. Hosted by Trevor Phillips, the weekly discussion programme will give the audienc...


Sky Sports reveals new chapter in boxing, new fighters and winter boxing schedule

Josh Taylor v Jack Catterall (18th December), Vasiliy Lomachenko, Chris Eubank J...


Sky reveals first look and premiere date for highly anticipated documentary Hawking: Can You Hear Me?

California 1974. Family photograph. Copyright Hawking Estate Sky has today reve...


Sky Sports' new WSL broadcast deal is a ground-breaking moment for women's sport

This week sees the start of Sky Sports' new multi-million-pound broadcast d...


First look images released of Django

The eagerly-anticipated upcoming Sky Original TV series and CANAL+ creation originale...


Sky boosts Factual channels offering

Sky unveils seven new titles across Sky Documentaries, Sky Crime, Sky Nature and Sky HISTORY...


New comedy series starring Gemma Arterton based on Nick Hornby novel Funny Girl' has been commissioned for Sky and NOW

Sky today announces the commission of upcoming comedy series based on Nick Hornb...


The Intros' round returns in Never Mind the Buzzcocks coming to Sky Max and NOW this September

Re-introducing The Intro's round! A first-look clip has today been release...


Jacqui Oatley announced as commentator for Sky Sports' Barclays FA WSL coverage

Sky Sports announce Jacqui Oatley as Barclays FA WSL commentator whilst Jess Cre...


Filming begins for Sky Original drama Then You Run coming to Sky and NOW in 2022

Leah McNamara, Vivian Oparah, Isidora Fairhurst and Yasmin Monet Prince star in this new drama series alongside Richard Coyle, Cillian O'Sullivan, Francis M...


Sky Arts reveals the UK's favourite public art ahead of brand new series, Landmark

A 1.2 tonne metal sculpture of a soldier reflecting on the horrors of World War ...


Portrait Artist of the Year returns to Sky Arts on 13 October

Celeste, Alastair Campbell, Alexa Chung, and Lydia West all sit for portraits in brand new series...


Comcast and ViacomCBS announce SkyShowtime, a new streaming service to launch in select European markets

Subscription Video on Demand Partnership to Include Premium and Original Content...


First look images from Sky and HBO co-production Landscapers starring Olivia Colman and David Thewlis

Sky today reveals exclusive first look images of Landscapers; an exhilarating an...


New street art mural celebrates start of Premier League in best picture quality

Vivid artwork and research, commissioned by Sky Q, marks live Premier League games being broadcast in Ultra HD with HDR (Ultra High Definition with High Dynamic...


Sky & NOW Autumn Brochure 2021

Check out some of the most exciting shows coming to Sky & NOW this Autumn. There's more premium Original Drama with Landscapers starring Olivia Colman on S...


New Sky Sports report reveals how Football Fandom is changing across the UK

Growing number of fans connecting with football through players' stance on social issues Only 30% of fans classified as traditional die-hard Lifers' l...


New Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 & Z Flip3 available to pre-order on Sky Mobile and save yourself 288

Sky Mobile, voted Uswitch Best Pay Monthly and Best Value Pay Monthly Network, i...


Sky appoints Prasanna Gopalakrishnan as Group Chief Technology Officer

Prasanna Gopalakrishnan has been appointed Sky Group Chief Technology Officer (CTO) following a global search. Prasanna will join Sky in September 2021 and over...


Meet Professor Wolfe, half genius, half liability coming to Sky Max and streaming service NOW on Friday 10th September 2021

Sky today releases an exclusive first look trailer for darkly funny Sky Original...


Sky makes changes to entertainment portfolio unveiling Sky Showcase and Sky Max

To help customers easily find programmes that they love and to discover new shows, we're making some changes to our portfolio of TV channels and on demand d...


Comcast announces Peacock coming to Sky

Later this year, nearly 20 million Sky customers In UK, Ireland, Germany, Italy, Austria, and Switzerland will receive Peacock at no extra cost with Sky Q, NOW,...


Sky hits its 100% renewable electricity target and publishes method behind Scope 3 emissions reporting

Sky, Europe's leading media and entertainment company, has today announced i...


Sky publishes 2020 Impact Report highlighting its societal and environmental initiatives and contributions

Sky has published its Group-wide Impact Report looking at the bigger picture of ...