Health and Wellbeing Art Project for Insch

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A LOCAL community is using an art project to engage the public in helping to shape a state-of-the-art ‘Health Hub’.

A steering group has been set up to drive the project forward. Thanks to funding from Aberdeenshire Council and Friends of Insch Hospital, two artists have been employed to produce a piece of conceptual art as an outcome of the engagement process.

Insch Art Project Steering Committee member, Henrike Bird said: “It is a new approach in our locality to link the local communities with two appointed artists who will take a creative approach to meeting groups and individuals, draw out current opinions and aspirations through health and wellbeing, and reflect these through public art.”

The project will also incorporate Kennethmont, Meikle Wartle, Fisherford, Culsalmond, Colpy, Old Rayne, Oyne, Premnay, Rhynie, Keig Rothienorman and Rayne.

Artists Catrin Jeans and Fraser McDonald will create an original work of temporary public art derived from the “community’s hopes and needs for health and wellbeing in the widest sense” said Henrike.

She added: “This will hopefully identify a clear set of priorities and options to link to future opportunities for activity, development and funding.

“We thought a project like this would engage the community while raising awareness and it would also reveal what was needed in terms of funding. We want to know what everybody thinks and what is visualised by the public to meet the demands of the growing community in Insch and the surrounding villages in the future.”

The artists are currently working on branding which will make them instantly identifiable when they visit the local communities. Taking on the subject of health and wellbeing, they call themselves ‘art practioners’ and this will be reflected in their ‘look’, their website and their blog.

Fraser McDonald spoke enthusiastically about the project. He said: “We’re excited to be working with people in an area we are as yet unfamiliar with. The project will encourage people to discuss their opinions and ideas about art in relation to health and wellbeing and will be included towards establishing an artwork as a celebratory event in late October.”

The pair will also work closely with the medical profession. Catlin said: “We’re looking forward to working closely with hospital staff and patients with regard to health and wellbeing as an overview for the project.”