OAPs’ school spray time

Graf­fiti: Pen­sion­ers and pupils cel­e­brate di­ver­sity with a splash of colour

The Press and Journal (Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire) - - NEWS - BY DANIEL BOAL

A drab wall has been trans­formed by a team of pen­sion­ers and chil­dren.

The Graf­fiti Gra­n­ar­chists worked with 240 pupils from Gil­com­stoun School in Aberdeen to splash colour across the Skene Street wall.

The group had made head­lines for their street art and were in­vited on to ITV’s This Morn­ing pro­gramme to show­case their skills.

Sec­re­tary for the group and former head teacher,

“It’s great to see the area get a bit of life breathed into it”

Rose­mary Mur­ray, said: “This in­ter-gen­er­a­tional team has been great and both groups have taught each other so much.

“We’ve taught them that street art is a great out­let for cre­ativ­ity and they have shown us just how well young and old can work to­gether.”

Or­gan­iser An­gela Joss said: “The piece is set to be a mul­ti­cul­tural fea­ture that will cel­e­brate the di­ver­sity of the school, where there are 30 lan­guages spo­ken by pupils.”

Chil­dren dec­o­rated the grey wall with words mean­ing “play” in their na­tive tongues, along­side sten­cils they cre­ated de­pict­ing im­ages of happiness.

The Skene Street Project has been a long-run­ning ef­fort from Aberdeen City Coun­cil to make the area more at­trac­tive.

Aberdeen Al­co­hol and Drug Ac­tion laid the foun­da­tions when they pro­vided the white­wash can­vas pupils started with yes­ter­day morn­ing.

With the part­ner­ship of pen­sion­ers and pri­mary school pupils, the blank space be­came a colour­ful tableau as the day pro­gressed.

Chair­man Dustin Mac­don­ald, who has two chil­dren at the school and who helped with the spray paint­ing, said: “It’s great to see the area get a bit of life breathed into it, and the kids were re­ally ex­cited.

“Ev­ery child’s hand print fea­tures on the wall, giv­ing them all own­er­ship of this newly bright­ened space.”

The group, which was brought to­gether for the city’s NuArt Fes­ti­val, now has 13 mem­bers and, with the fes­ti­val be­hind them, the Graf­fiti Gra­n­ar­chists are look­ing to con­tinue their work across the city.

Mem­bers of the group are en­cour­ag­ing other peo­ple over the age of 65 to join them, and look for­ward to sharing their skills and love of art.

Pho­to­graph by Jim Irvine

BRIGHT: Gil­com­stoun pupil, Sara, was just one of many from the school to get paint­ing with the Graf­fiti Gra­n­ar­chists.

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