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Edinburgh Airport installs marathon artwork

Edinburgh Airport is working with a local artist to help encourage passengers to get into the running spirit ahead of this weekend's Edinburgh Marathon Festival.

Damian Callan has installed 'The Dalry marathon', a 10-metre charcoal sketch of runners and spectators, in the airport's departure lounge. The installation coincides fittingly with the Edinburgh Marathon Festival which takes place this Saturday and Sunday.

The drawing has been a work in progress since October last year where Damian sketched models in his Dalry-based studio. Now, in order to complete the piece, he will use the many passengers travelling through the airport as his inspiration. Damian will be adding to the drawing live on Friday and Monday - capturing the atmosphere before and after the marathon weekend.

Scotland's busiest airport is set to welcome thousands of runners and spectators over the next few days and this unique artwork will take pride of place in the airport's very own art gallery.

Jan Riley is the owner and curator of The Airport Gallery, which has now been in Edinburgh Airport for almost 7 years. The gallery exhibits and promotes work by Scottish artists from Edinburgh and around Scotland. Indeed, a piece by Damian was the first to be sold at the gallery.

Damian's marathon drawing will be exhibited in the airport for two weeks before hopefully being sold for charity.

Speaking about his piece, Damian said: “I’ve had art exhibited at the airport gallery before but this time I wanted to create something which was new and more performance related. I’m very interested in getting people involved and interacting with my work and an airport provides the best venue for this.

“Art, like running, is available to everyone, regardless of age or ability. However, after you’ve done a 10 metre charcoal drawing, it feels like you’ve already run a marathon.”

Sarah Gardiner, Head of Terminal Operations, said: "This is a wonderful opportunity for Edinburgh Airport to support its local artists and provide an excellent platform for artwork on this scale to be shown to the public.

"We are delighted that it has coincided with the Edinburgh Marathon Festival where we will see a large number of runners and supporters passing through our terminal. We hope everyone in the departure lounge will take a moment to view this stunning piece of artwork. It's exciting to know that Damian will be continuing to add to the drawing at the airport using our passengers as inspiration for his art."

Neil Kilgour, Edinburgh Marathon Festival Race Director, said: "Edinburgh Marathon Festival has it all - a great city that acts as a stunning backdrop to the event’s proceedings and a programme of races that means that everyone is catered for from children to marathon veterans.

“We are looking forward to welcoming runners from all over the world this weekend to Scotland’s capital. There are more than 1,000 international runners competing in the Edinburgh Marathon alone with runners from America to Austria, Belguim to Brazil, Canada, China, Finland, France, Greece, Germany, Norway, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain and Sweden all playing a proud part in the race. For many Edinburgh Airport will be their gateway to Scotland’s capital city so we welcome Damian’s marathon artwork and can’t wait to see the results.”