Artists and foodbank combine to feed the soul

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Force for change: some of the prints Andy Peutherer donated to kids at Maryhill foodbank

Artist Andy Peutherer is on a mission to nourish young people’s souls as well as their bodies as part of his growing Give Art movement

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1st April 2015 by Graham Martin 0 Comments

A unique project aims to feed the imagination and creativity of children who rely on foodbanks.

Artist Andy Peutherer is on a mission to nourish young people’s souls as well as their bodies as part of his growing Give Art movement.

He has teamed up with Greater Maryhill Foodbank, one of Scotland’s biggest, to distribute art materials to children who use their services.

Glasgow-based Peutherer, from Hamilton, has issued a rallying call to the city’s artistic community to get behind his venture.

Give Art began to grow in December last year when the acclaimed artist, who specialises in highly distinctive and stylised landscapes, first donated prints of his artwork as well as materials to the foodbank.

Andy Peutherer

Andy Peutherer

A lot of these kids have empty walls and no idea how much fun it can be to create something yourself

He then hit on the idea of rallying the artistic and creative community to the cause, growing the project through his own network of likeminded artist friends and then the Art Retail Network, a body which brings artists together.

Peutherer, who had previously worked on art projects with youth groups in Glasgow, said: “Most kids that come into the foodbanks would love to get some toys or games. Giving them art materials and prints is a great way to inspire some wee minds.

“Most artists and professional creative people I know started with some paper and a biro or pencil. A lot of these kids have empty walls and no idea how much fun it can be to create something yourself.

“At the core of Give Art is a belief that creativity at a young age is important. Whether it is drawing a picture, painting a landscape or designing a dream car, the space to create new ideas and enjoy art is essential to every young upbringing.”

Julie Webster, manager of Greater Maryhill Foodbank, said the project could grow to encompass the whole country.

She said: “We are delighted to work in collective partnership with Andy and the Art Retail Network on this project.

“Andy’s previous generosity has benefited many families within the Greater Maryhill area.

“When we look back on foodbanks when they are gone, Andy’s generosity will live on through the artwork that now hangs in many of the houses in the area and through the creativity that he has helped inspire in a new generation of artists, designers and creators.

“We’re both looking forward to working in partnership in local primary schools within the local area. This is an idea that we hope spreads across Scotland, into the UK and worldwide, with community’s everywhere having their own creative appeals.”

Fellow creatives have been quick to back Peutherer's project.

Artist Michelle Campbell said: "As I child who constantly loved to draw and make stuff I was fortunate to be given the materials and encouragement to do so and in turn I found it do be fun and therapeutic.

"I believe that every child should be the same opportunities to express themselves and explore their own imagination through arts and crafts.

"Give Art is a wonderful way to provide such inspiration and encourage creativity in every child's home. It's amazing how just a few pens and some paper can go a long way in helping a child's creative and personal development.

"Such a small and simple act of kindness can make a massive difference!"

Give Art works with partner organisations to set up donation points where people can drop off art supplies, spare colouring pencils, paints or paper.

They then collect these donations, put them together into art packs and deliver them to the foodbank to distribute to children.

Donations can currently be made at Greater Maryhill Foodbank, The Whisky Bond on Dawson Road, the Art Store at Royal Exchange Square, Wasp Studios at The Briggait and Hanson Street, The Art School, Renfrew Lane and 103 Trongate.

The list of drop-off locations is expanding and more will be added soon.

Give Art is holding a fundraiser at the Record Factory, Byres Road at 7.30pm on Sunday, 5 April, with the entrance fee just £5.

There will be performances from The Declan Welsh Band, Lady Alba and Josephine Sillars.

More information on this can be found on Give Art’s Facebook page www.facebook.com/GiveArtNow and Twitter @GiveArtNow.