Christopher and Oliver's artworks are set to Shine

Young Borders artists didn't hold back when they were asked to completely reimagine the look of Kelso’s historic town hall.

By Kevin Janiak
Friday, 4th February 2022, 10:13 am
Oliver Wright and Christopher Blackwell with their winning designs. Photo: Borders Art Fair.

Organisers of Borders Art Fair were delighted to receive over 100 entries for their Shine competition, and now around 30 of their colourful designs will be brought to life when they are projected onto the front of the early 19th century neoclassical Category B-listed building.

The overall winners of the competition have been named as Oliver Wright, aged 11, (junior section for those aged 13 and under) who goes to Broomlands Primary School, and Christopher Blackwell, aged 17, (senior section for 18 years and under) from Jedburgh.

Both received a £100 Cass Art Voucher donated by Art Society Borders, who sponsored the competition alongside local businesses Hastings Legal, Douglas Home & Co and Focal Point Furniture.

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Frances Fergusson, Borders Art Fair director, said: “We wanted young people to use their imaginations and artistic talents to achieve something spectacular – and they seemed to love the idea of transforming the look of a whole town hall.

"It’s been a great response with some mind-blowing ideas.

“We’re inviting the public to come along during two evenings in February to see the designs that Oliver, Christopher and many others came up with.

"Kelso Town House will be brought to life as it becomes the canvas for their colourful artworks.”

The public are being invited along for the two free events on February 12 and 19, to see the designs being projected onto the building from 6pm to 8pm. The Dessert Diva café and takeaway will be open during that time for hot drinks and snacks.

The competition, funded by the Scottish Government, aimed to nurture an interest in the arts and to bring the community together as Scotland seeks to rebuild after the pandemic.

Organisers of the Borders Art Fair have also announced that, subject to Covid regulations at the time, the event will be returning this year after being cancelled in 2021.

More than 70 artists and galleries from the Borders and beyond will be taking part in the event, planned for March 25-27 at the Borders Events Centre, Kelso.