Exhibition shows how young creative talent was inspired

Brenna Donnelly from Dalziel High, Motherwell with her artwork
Brenna Donnelly from Dalziel High, Motherwell with her artwork

Artwork produced by North Lanarkshire’s most creative pupils is at the heart of an inspiring new exhibition at Summerlee Museum in Coatbridge.

The work is the outcome of a creative residency programme in picturesque Kilbowie, which overlooks the Sound of Kerrera, near Oban.

Every year, pupils in S4 and S5 from across North Lanarkshire take part in the week-long learning programme, under the guidance of specialist tutors.

Original paintings, drawings, films, digital photography, textiles, jewellery, fashion, creative writing and music all feature in the exhibition, which is now in its twelfth year.

Isabelle Boyd, from the council’s learning and leisure services said: “The residency provides a space for creativity and learning to thrive in an environment outside of the classroom.”

Pupil Dawn O’Neill said: “The creative residency was an amazing and eye opening experience.

“I had the opportunity to make friends and work with an amazingly talented group of people.

“The most valuable thing I learned is to push myself out of my comfort zone when learning new things and meeting new people.”

Erin Toolan from Taylor High School, who took part in the music group this year, said she felt taking part had helped her grow as a musician.

“I only wish the whole experience could’ve lasted longer,” she said.

Brenna Donnelly from Dalziel High said: “The creative residency gave me a fantastic opportunity to improve my drawing and painting skills.

“Oban’s location provided me with plenty of inspiration to experiment. I learned new painting techniques which have changed the way I originally painted.

“I also learned more about different types of mediums and what they can achieve.

“I got to make friends with people from other schools who also have an interest in art. I really enjoyed being able to focus on art, surrounded by people who are my age and are around the same level.”

Rebekah Tong from Braidhurst High School, who took part in the printmaking group, was equally positive.

She said: “My experience at this year’s creative residency is one to remember...observing other people’s amazing work inspired me to work and focus more.”

Piroska Anna Horvath from Our Lady’s High School in Motherwell took part in the filmmaking group.

She said: “Now that I’ve been to the creative residency I can only say that it was amazing and I enjoyed it so much that I found it hard to leave the place.”

Councillor Frank McNally, convener of education said: “The high quality of work produced never fails to impress.”

The exhibition runs until February 19.