Page last updated at 07:30 GMT, Friday, 16 January 2009

Artist's farewell to old stadium

The Ninian Park print, by Jamie Edwards
Jamie Edwards likes to include a stadium's surroundings in his work

An Arsenal fan arrived at Ninian Park early - to create a print of Cardiff City's stadium in its final season.

Artist Jamie Edwards, 32, specialises in cityscapes and football grounds and made his trip before his club were given a trip to Cardiff for the FA Cup fourth round on 25 January.

His previous work includes the home grounds of clubs such as Liverpool, Chelsea, West Ham and Fulham.

Cardiff are to move to a new stadium next season after almost 100 years.

Gunners fan Mr Edwards, who produces prints of stadiums through his Urban Colours brand, said he felt passionate about football stadiums, and one day hoped to paint all 92 league grounds in Wales and England.

I think a lot of art that surrounds football is very dated and stuck in the 1970s and 1980s
Jamie Edwards

"I'm quite keen to capture these grounds before they go so it was the next one for me to do," he said.

"The Cardiff ground was fantastic to visit. It's just so modest and there's that lovely park opposite.

"There's also the new ground looming over it which highlights the difference in architectural styles."

He believes stadiums can be an interesting subject due to their architecture and surroundings but, while he uses bold and contemporary colours, he said many artists produced old-fashioned pictures of football grounds.

"I think a lot of art that surrounds football is very dated and stuck in the 1970s and 1980s. It needs updating," he said.

"People sell the pictures to the fan on the basis of their support for the club, although that's probably an injustice to some artists, but I don't see how it fits in a modern home."

Mr Edwards, whose prints include urban scenes in Nottingham and Bristol, said he always tried to include a stadium's surroundings in his work.

Flat building

"The Charlton ground is nice because there's terraced housing, a block of flats and Canary Wharf in the background," he said.

"I think that's really important because some of the housing around clubs can be part of the history of the club."

Arsenal will also get a last chance to see Ninian Park at close quarters after the two sides were drawn together in the fourth round of the FA Cup.

"I just thought 'blimey' but I was quite pleased because I know where it [Ninian Park] is now," he said. "That could be the worst draw for Arsenal, a Championship team away from home."

But he said he was unlikely to revisit Ninian Park for the match on 25 January because tickets would be scarce.

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