Artwork tribute to Khadija Saye opens at the Tate  

Published on: Tuesday 12 September 2023

Tate Britain has commissioned British artist Chris Ofili to create artwork for the very large walled area around one of the main stairwells in the building. 

The piece is called Requiem and is a dream-like mural painted directly onto the walls, so is likely be there for some time. 

Chris Ofili wanted to pay tribute to fellow artist Khadija Saye – one of the 72 people who died in the Tower Fire.  They met while they were both exhibiting in Venice in May 2017, shortly before the fire. In remembering Khadija he creates a powerful visual which holds an image of her front and centre as a “powerful creative force of transformation”.

The work has been developed following conversations over a number of years with Khadija’s family, as well as other survivors and bereaved. Khadija’s family have already had a private viewing to see the piece and other survivors and  bereaved visited last weekend. They have all been supported by specialist teams from CNWL, who provide the Grenfell Health & Wellbeing service to the Grenfell-affected community.

Mike Martin, Associate Director for the North Kensington Recovery (NKR) team says: “We recognise the response to the work might be triggering and stir powerful emotions in some people, especially those directly affected by the Grenfell Tower Fire tragedy.

“We want to remind the Grenfell-affected community that the NHS is here for you and you can contact the Grenfell Health & Wellbeing Service on 020 8637 6279 (everyday 8am to 8pm) if you need specialist support..”