Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Kelburn colors

When they learned in 2007 that harling on a turret at Scotland's Kelburn Castle would need to be replaced, the Earl of Glasgow and his family had an unusual idea. Their ancestral home, parts of which date to the 16th c. and earlier, is listed with Historic Scotland and cannot be altered. But they got permission from the North Ayrshire Council to make some striking changes (photos above, more here and here) on the understanding that they were to last only 3 years. The family then commissioned a group of Brazilian graffiti artists - including Otavio and Gustavo Pandolfo, Nina Pandolfo, and Nunca - to paint a mural on the designated portion of the castle, and were very pleased with the result. Since the completion of the £20,000 project (time-lapse video here), it has been named by British designer Tristan Manco as one of the 10 best examples of street art. The Earl, Patrick Boyle (photo below), has now politely petitioned Historic Scotland and the local council for permission to allow the psychedelic art to remain in place indefinitely. He makes his case: "In the 3 years that the mural has been on the castle it has attracted enormous interest from around the world and it is loved by everyone who sees it. It has become a landmark and a talking point and it has given the castle and the estate a whole new character. What we now call historic buildings have always been drivers of fashion in architecture and design. Features that we now take for granted would have seemed radical in their day. The mural might look a bit outlandish and futuristic but if it provokes interest and makes people smile, why shouldn't it stay?"

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