Graffiti Grannies – crafty pensioners who bonded as part of a project introducing older people to street art – are part of a Nuart initiative to create the largest paste-up wall in the world.
They submitted a poster to the worldwide collaborative project Stuck Up that will see a massive paste-up collage appear in the heart of Aberdeen.
Aberdeen Inspired issued a call for local people to get involved in the project in mid-June and some of those who decided to take part were three Graffiti Grannies – Rosemary Murray, Martine Shepherd and Dorothy Bothwell.
Graffiti Grannies inspired by roses
Hoping to create an artwork influenced by the memories they had of the Granite City, they eventually decided to focus on Aberdeen’s link to roses.
“We used to be the city of roses 40 years ago – I’ve still got a carrier bag (depicting a rose from Aberdeen),” said Rosemary.
A scanned copy of the carrier bag will be part of the paste-up wall. The project will feature curated pieces from a selection of Nuart artists and archive revolutionary street art posters, together with submissions from artists, poets and creatives from across the globe.
Developing their roses’ idea further, Martine of Graffiti Grannies also created paper roses which are currently embellishing Cafe 52’s outdoor seating area. In addition, the crafty pensioners also made a paper memory tree that includes notes from locals as well as strangers.
Dorothy said: “Some of them (the notes) are very moving, some of them are very funny, but for each, they represent a memory to the person who put it there.”
The memory tree is also located on the wall of Cafe 52’s outdoor area on The Green, close to where Nuart artists SNIK created their mural which is soon-to-be demolished.
The Graffiti Grannies, who became a sensation when they first showcased their street art skills on Adelphi Lane as part of Nuart in 2019, said they once again wanted to be part of the festival because it brings a “great deal” to the city.
Dorothy added: “What it brought has spanned the ages and it encourages people to look at buildings and to look at what is there and I think that’s hugely important.”
After working on their Aberdeen mural, they attracted UK-wide attention when they went down to London to give Holly Willoughby and Phillip Schofield a masterclass on This Morning.
Nuart’s paste-up wall will soon start taking shape
Locals are still being encouraged to contribute to Stuck Up, creating a collaborative paste-up wall running from the East Green into the Tunnels. The wall should be nearly half a kilometre long.
Nuart’s production manager Jon Reid said: “We hope the whole stretch will be covered in an amazing artwork from local and international artists.
“We invite artists from around the world to submit paste-ups, posters stickers, various tyles of artwork that we’re going to install across the walls in Aberdeen and hopefully, create the world’s biggest paste-up wall.”
Jon was thrilled they had already received a lot of stunning artwork.
He said: “We’ve had a lot of submissions from a lot of different places. I just picked up a parcel earlier that came from Mexico – we’ve had quite an international following through Nuart festival – and we had a lot of local stuff as well.
“The deadline for submitting artwork is roughly in the middle of July, with the hope for us starting pasting stuff up towards the end of July.”
The organisers aim to complete the paste-up wall when the Nuart festival wraps up at the end of July.
Jon thinks creative festivals like Nuart and its Stuck Up paste-up wall project are really important because they put Aberdeen on the map.
He said: “International artists who maybe wouldn’t normally be looking at Aberdeen as a destination…Nuart’s helped to bring them here and as a result, we’re seeing people who are seeing Aberdeen as a street art destination.
“I think we all just need to try to talk our city up and hopefully, we’re one of the voices that are doing that.”
How to get involved
To get involved send your posters, poems, printouts, photos and collages to: Stuck Up, The Anatomy Rooms, Marischal College, Shoe Lane, Aberdeen, Ab10 1AN.
In the spirit of inclusion, all submissions – as long as they are not considered too offensive – will be used.