Sunderland designer pays tribute to Freddie Mercury with unique artwork made from 14,000 screws

A Sunderland designer has paid tribute to one his favourite musicians on what would have been his 75th birthday with the creation of a unique art piece.

Sunday, 5th September 2021, 1:02 pm

Darren Timby, 39, from Roker, made the artwork of Queen star Freddie Mercury over a three-week period using approximately 14,000 screws, coinciding with what would have been Mercury’s 75th birthday on Sunday, September 5.

Darren was inspired with his latest creation after seeing that The Saltgrass pub, in Ayres Quay, was hosting a celebration in honour of Mercury’s birthday.

He wanted to be a part of it and pay tribute to one of his favourite artists.

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The Freddie Mercury piece has become Darren’s third artwork using only screws, with previous pieces of Marilyn Monroe and Elvis Presley on display inside the fine art section at the Pigment and Toil Gallery inside the Bridges shopping centre.

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Speaking about his latest creation, Darren told the Echo: “I’ve been a massive Queen and Freddie fan ever since he died when I was about 10. My mam got me into their music and I was obsessed with all their albums.

“When I heard the Saltgrass were having a tribute birthday bash for Freddie it was a great excuse to try and get it done.

Darren Timby, right, and Malcolm Hassan with the Freddie Mercury artwork. Picture: Darren Timby.

"With my previous pieces of Marilyn and Elvis I wasn’t on a deadline, but I really wanted to get this done in time for Freddie’s birthday and The Saltgrass celebration so it was quite an intense three weeks. Freddie has always been on my list to do, he’s one of my favorites.”

The Freddie Mercury 75th birthday event at The Saltgrass on Sunday, starting at 5pm, will be a celebration of the life of the former Queen frontman.

Fancy dress is encouraged and there will be a performance from North East Queen tribute band, We Are Champion.

Darren’s piece will be front and centre during the celebration, staying in The Salthouse for one week when, unless sold, it will join his other pieces at the Pigment and Toil Gallery.

Work underway on the Freddie Mercury piece. Picture: Darren Timby.

Other names on Darren’s list of potential future projects include Amy Winehouse, Keith Richards and David Bowie. The designer is also considering doing a piece which would pay tribute to Sunderland’s industrial past.

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Darren enjoys a well-earned drink outside The Saltgrass pub with his artwork. Picture: Darren Timby.