Artists from across the country are looking forward to Scotland’s ‘friendliest art fair’

  • McInroy & Wood Borders Art Fair to feature more than 70 exhibitors
  • Edinburgh artist Martha Ellis values event for its atmosphere and ethos
  • Full 2023 programme has now been launched

Edinburgh artist Martha Ellis is among dozens from across the UK preparing for Scotland’s “friendliest art fair”.

Known for what she describes as “cut-out drawings” – including three quarters life-size wooden silhouettes of real people – Martha is one of more than 70 artists, makers and galleries taking part in the annual McInroy & Wood Borders Art Fair (BAF).

The full programme is now available free online and gives details of all the artists, activities and attractions.

The family-friendly weekend event, from 17 to 19 March at the Borders Events Centre, Kelso, features a wide variety of work ranging from landscape, wildlife and portrait painting through to animal sculptures, botanical castings, ceramics and stone carvings.

Over the years it has developed a reputation for providing exhibitors and visitors with a great experience.

Martha said: “It really is one of the friendliest art fairs. The conversations you have with visitors are always really positive and, for many of them, it’s part of their calendar – they make a point of coming back year after year.

“That’s got a lot to do with the atmosphere and ethos of the event, which always feels as if it’s genuinely committed to a love of art and a desire to nurture artists.”

Some of Martha’s work has fun by creating cut outs of real people and putting them in contexts where passers-by will feel they look familiar, and often end up wondering if they are of someone they know.

She also creates delightful, detailed and complex cut-outs showing rural and urban scenes, which hang on walls or can even be attached to the outside of buildings.

During BAF she will be exhibiting a series of cut-outs showing the grasses and flowers that grow during each of the four seasons on the banks of the Whiteadder river which runs through East Lothian and Berwickshire.

Frances Fergusson, Director of the Borders Art Fair, says: “We really want people to enjoy art, and to meet the artists. BAF is all about creating that connection between people and having an event that’s fun and friendly – it’s something we feel has tremendous value.

“Buying a work of art when you have met the artist, learned how they created it and discovered what inspired them can really add to your sense of what makes it special.”

This year’s BAF will feature a great food and drink area, plus the chance to create your own masterpiece at the new pop up print studio.

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