Radio covered in plaster and cement appears outside the Tate Modern in London

THIS "work of art" - a radio covered in plaster and cement - got a very strange reception when it appeared outside the Tate Modern in London.

People stopped to take photos of the ‘new exhibition’ outside the famous London art gallery – a Makita DAB radio - which was placed inside a glass display box on a plinth.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The device convinced one artist it was a true modern masterpiece, and she said the radio deserved to be on display alongside her own work inside the Tate.

Despite convincing art aficionados and commuters of its artistic credentials, when Fix Radio’s Jack Edwards tried to drop the radio off inside the gallery, he was roundly rejected by security.

 Representing the best of Britain

The radio, which belonged to builder Christopher Kitchenside, from Borehamwood, London, had no volume dial, and so a golf ball was drilled in as a makeshift fix.

The 37-year-old also attached a car aerial which he found on a building site after the original went missing.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The multi-trade builder joked he had his radio “longer than most people have been in a relationship” after it was put on display for all to see.

He said: “It's covered in literally everything. I started doing loft conversions so it's had a bit of sawdust on it and insulation, and we've gone from there.

"It's had a few different aerials. It's had screws for aerials.”

Jack Edwards, senior producer on The Bald Builders Breakfast on Fix Radio, who put the radio on show as a symbol of the art Britain’s tradespeople carry out every day, said: "Chris's radio represents the best of Britain.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"The device has been alongside him through thick and thin, providing countless hours of entertainment and joy as he worked to make people's homes better.

"As Britain’s radio station for builders, we know each device has been on its own journey, and we want to celebrate their stories and their owners."

The backbone of society

More than 40 tradespeople from across the UK, including builders, painters, scaffolders and carpenters, took part in Fix Radio's competition to find Britain's dirtiest radio.

Among the runners-up included Tom Morse, 30, who uses his radio to wipe his hands clean after painting.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The Bridgend-based decorator thought he'd broken his radio after leaving it in the rain for three days - only for it to rise from the dead and start working a week later.

Ben Waldron, 29, from Peterborough, who also works as a painter, had his Makita DAB radio fall out of his van, having to replace the aerial with a spring to get it working again.

The radio was given to him as a hand-me-down from his boss eight years ago, and he still uses the beat-up device to this day.

Another entry came from carpenter Josh Branscombe, 32, from Newcastle, who swapped a sandwich and drink for the Dewalt radio.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

One day he couldn't be bothered to carry it down from a roof, so instead threw it off.

Miraculously, only the screen broke but the radio itself still works - thanks to the help of a cable which doubles-up as an aerial.

Jack Edwards added: “British builders are the backbone of society and help make our lives much easier.

“Whether it’s re-laying the garden, building an extension or putting up some shelves, they’re always there for us.

“We wanted to show the art which inspires this generation of builders – the humble radio, which keeps them going throughout the working day.”