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Cairngorm creatives get their own special directory

By Tom Ramage

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The Cairngorms' artistic talent is putting itself on the map – and a real one too.

As one of its Heritage Horizons: Cairngorms 2030 projects, the national park authority today delivered a map-based directory of creative practitioners.

More than 80, from poets and painters to sculptors and storytellers, have contributed to the new directory which received development funding through The National Lottery Heritage Fund.

The Community Arts & Culture project’s creative map showcases the depth and breadth of creative activity, expertise and resources here.

Musicians all: Badenoch and Strathspey's Strathfest maestros pictured by Sophie McLeod
Musicians all: Badenoch and Strathspey's Strathfest maestros pictured by Sophie McLeod

More widely, the project aims to create a greater connection to landscape and place and encourage a desire among park communities to get involved in climate action.

The next stage of the project will see local creatives come together through a series of workshops to consider ideas on how to inspire and involve members of the community in climate action projects, some of which could be art installations, writers’ forums, youth and school climate activities or community design projects.

"The aim is to develop some of these ideas, bring them forward for consideration by communities with a view to submitting them for funding consideration for the delivery phase of the Cairngorms 2030 programme," said Tania Alliod, project lead.

“Our creative community can now articulate their vision for the contribution community arts and culture make towards deepening our sense of connectedness with our landscapes and achieving transformational climate action. "The first objective was to develop a map to showcase creative practitioners of the park and I am delighted that so many have contributed and chosen to participate.

Carrbridge Gallery by Amy Buttress
Carrbridge Gallery by Amy Buttress

“We have now begun the second part of the project’s development phase, working in partnership with park creative practitioners in consultation focus groups to develop and take forward a number of ideas for fostering a desire among people to get involved in community-based climate action through culture and art.”

The 18-month development phase of the project will culminate in the production of a stage two funding application to The National Lottery Heritage Fund in June 2023, when the ideas for community-based climate action culture and arts projects will be presented.

If successful it is anticipated the delivery phase will run from 2023-2028. The Art and Culture project is one of many that will contribute to the second stage application of the wider Cairngorms 2030 project.

One of the creative practitioners involved in the Creative Directory, Frances Crawford of Art in the Buchat, said: “The Creative Directory is a fantastic resource for creatives, communities and visitors to the park and really demonstrates the range and richness of the creative talent we have here.”

Creatives who wish to be involved can contact taniaalliod@cairngorms.co.uk

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