Small scale fish in large artwork

Svetlana Kondakova works with youngsters during her Sunday afternoon workshop at The Haining.
Svetlana Kondakova works with youngsters during her Sunday afternoon workshop at The Haining.

There were some fishy goings-on at The Haining over the weekend as artist Svetlana Kondakova held workshops so that townsfolk could create colourful piscene mosaics.

The fish will form part of her community art project for the Selkirk Flood Protection Scheme, after the Russian artist won the contract earlier this year, commissioned by the scheme and Scottish Borders Council to decorate part of the flood wall.

Svetlana is originally from St Petersburg and graduated from Edinburgh’s College of Art in 2011, but it was her during her exchange visit to Athens when she became interested in Greek mythology and learned the traditional technique of mosaic – two aspects which feature greatly in her work.

The weekend workshops – which also formed part of the YES Arts Festival – enabled visitors to be involved in creating a permanent public artwork.

The project, entitled ‘A Selkirk Legacy’ takes the form of a large mosaic mural, and she wanted locals to come up with colourful designs of leaping salmon to represent local wildlife within the artwork.

Visitors – mostly youngsters – were encouraged to be creative and express their own personality through colour and style. Completed mosaics will then be included in the final installation and remain on the wall for generations to come.

Svetlana was delighted with their work.

On her Facebook page, she said: “The workshop went swimmingly well! Enjoyed by children and adults alike and resulting in some beautiful fish mosaics.

“Thanks so much to everyone who came along and contributed.”