RESIDENTS and visitors to Oakham were treated to a spectacular red, white and blue surprise on Friday when close to 150 elaborately painted horseshoes were suddenly festooned around the town.
The pop-up art event came from a collaboration between artists from Rutland Open Studios, Arts 4 Rutland, and primary school children from across the county who had decorated the wooden horseshoes to celebrate the Queen’s diamond jubilee.
The “Shoebilee” also marks the launch of this month’s sixth annual open studios when up to 70 local artists, from painters to sculptors, photographers, textile designers to jewellers, will be opening their doors to the public.
Mo Gardner and Annie Tappenden of Rutland Open Studios, who dreamed up the Shoebilee idea, were delighted by the talent shown by the county’s budding younger artists, which included children from Catmose Primary, Exton and Greetham Primary School, Oakham CE Primary School, The Shires, Brooke Priory School, Leighfield, Brooke Hill, St Nicholas in Cottesmore, Whissendine, English Martyrs, Edith Weston, St. Mary and St John in North Luffenham, Ketton and Uppingham CE primary schools.
Mo said: “We were very impressed by the innovative and charming designs that the children have thought up, using only red, white and blue. We are also very grateful to all the teachers who gave up their time to help with the project.”
Keep your eyes peeled for more horseshoes which will appear later in the month, as some have galloped off in the direction of Burghley House where they will decorate Rutland’s marquee to welcome the Queen on June 13.
For further information on Rutland Open Studios go to www.rutlandopenstudios.co.uk. For a free colour brochure call 01572 747639.