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120 artists welcomed to Cheltenham

All Areas > Entertainment > Art

Author: Patrick Baines, Posted: Tuesday, 28th August 2018, 09:10

120 street artists will be visiting Cheltenham 120 street artists will be visiting Cheltenham

Locations across Cheltenham are to enjoy a fresh lick of paint later this month as over 120 artists take part in the 2018 Cheltenham Paint Festival.

Talented street artists will be painting buildings across the town centre on the weekend of 8th-9th September. It was local artist Andy Davies who launched the festival, and he’s confident that this year’s event will be a success.

“Last year was a real breakthrough, we welcomed over 80 artists to the festival and this year’s line-up of artists exceeds 120 which is very exciting,” said Andy. “The artists are incredibly talented, and the people of Cheltenham will see a huge range of painting styles. This year the visiting artists will be painting at locations all over Cheltenham, including the Honeybourne Line, the Hardwicke Campus at the University of Gloucestershire, the skate park at Pittville Park plus many other buildings in the town,” he added.

Many similar festivals welcome artists to paint onto boards that are later discarded but the Cheltenham Paint Festival gives artists the opportunity make permanent impressions on the landscape of the town. Andy continued: “The great thing about the Cheltenham Paint Festival is that the work the artists do doesn’t get instantly removed. That’s a big attraction for the visiting artists who know their work will be seen and enjoyed for a long time.

“Getting the artists to attend has been a lot easier than I thought. This year we’ve got artists travelling from all over the UK and abroad, including some of the most well-known street artists so we’re incredibly excited.

“Last year felt like the start of something special. I’d run much smaller events but fortunately I managed to secure funding from the Arts Council which enabled me to organise a much bigger scale event. It was a great weekend that really gave me the inspiration to make the festival an annual event. I managed to secure funding again for the 2018 festival and I had help from the Cheltenham Business Improvement District and the local council.”

Andy’s career as a full-time artist began a couple of years ago when a piece of work he was involved with went viral. He continued: “I was teaching at a school for children with disabilities. All the children wanted to paint in the style of Banksy, so I learned how to make stencils to help them do that. A couple of years later I helped the children paint a wall, the photo was viewed online by half a million people which was unbelievable. People started contacting me asking if they could purchase a photo of the wall and that made me realise I could go full-time as an artist. I absolutely love what I do, it’s a very rewarding job. I’ve just finished painting a mural at the oncology unit at the Gloucester Royal Hospital and a mural of Gustav Holst for the Holst Birthplace museum in Cheltenham.”

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