Art on a higher level
South Glengarry just got a whole lot more colourful.
Take a drive through Williamstown, Lancaster, Green Valley, Martintown, Glen Walter, or other communities and you will likely spot several attractive new banners hanging from hydro poles.
In the spring, the township procured nearly $50,000 from the provincial government’s Main Street Revitalization Initiative. It used this money to pay local artists to create unique banners that celebrate South Glengarry Celtic culture.
On Thursday evening, the Char-Lan Recreation Centre on Thursday evening hosted a viewing of these banners. Shauna Baggs, the township’s Economic Development Officer and Tourism Coordinator, said that 12 artists used 19 different images to create a grand total of 54 different banners.
Some of the images are specific to certain locales – the St. Raphael’s Ruins or the cairn or the painted boathouses in South Lancaster. Others feature iconic Glengarry imagery like pipers and Highland dancers. Still, others featured nature and farm imagery.
One of the artists was Carolyn Elshof of Berwick, who said she responded after learning that Ms. Baggs was looking for an artist who could paint cows. Mrs. Elshof’s husband, Will, has parents who have jersey cows, so it was easy for her to find a cow to paint. She also created a banner featuring a Ferris wheel, a reference to the Williamstown Fair.
Williamstown artist Katie Lamarche’s work is also featured; one banner depicts a piper and the other portrays a dancer. Those paintings had been hanging in the recreation centre for a while. All she had to do was add some colour. “I think these banners are a great idea,” she said. “It helps support local artists and it adds colour and art to the street. It brings something new.”