Glasgow’s Kelvingrove Park transformed for free harvest-themed festival

Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park has been transformed this weekend for a festival being staged as part of a £7 million harvest-themed project being staged across Scotland this year.

Friday, 17th June 2022, 6:09 pm
Updated Friday, 17th June 2022, 11:20 pm

Live music, street performers, storytelling and art installations are being laid on alongside stalls and workshops on food-growing and climate action projects, initiatives and movements.

The festival site features a 10-metre-tall art installation made up of "growing cubes”, with live vegetable plants growing inside.

Similar cubes are also being sent around the country as part of the Dandelion project, which is running until September, when another free festival will be staged in Inverness.

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Along with specially created “edible farms”, the cubes are expected to help turn unused and derelict locations across the country into new food-growing gardens.

Other features at the Kelvingrove site include an 18m-long immersive whale installation made entirely of recycled ocean plastics, a 5m-tall singing art installation, sensory plant and nature experiences, and a locally-sourced street food market.

The event will culminate on Sunday with a giveaway of thousands of plants to inspire festival goers to grow their own food at home.

Bands and singers from around the world are appearing, along with a host of leading Scottish acts, at the event, which has been programmed by the organisers of Glasgow’s annual Celtic Connections festival.

Clem Sheridan (8) and Sholto Sheridan (6) were entertained by street theatre act Treemendous on the first day of the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow. Picture: Andrew Cawley

Scientists, chefs, environmentalists, musicians and writers are also speaking at the event, which will explore issues including food poverty, climate action and sustainability.

Singers appearing at Kelvingrove this weekend include Newton Faulkner, Rachel Sermanni, Sam Lee and Hannah Rarity, while Admiral Fallow, Rura, Hen Hoose, Niteworks and Shooglenifty are among the leading Scottish bands performing.

The festival features the live debut of Hen Hoose, a new collective of female and non-binary singers and songwriters, including Tamara Schlesinger, Emma Pollock, Elisabeth Elektra, Suse Bear, Pippa Murphy, Karine Polwart, Carla J Easton, Jayda and Amandah Wilkinson.

Also in the line-up are Afro-Brazilian collective Baque Luar, West African supergroup Les Amazones D’Afrique and Boston indie-folk band Darlingside.

A 10-metre tall installation entitled the Pavilion of Perpetual Light provides the striking backdrop to the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park this weekend. Picture: Mark Runnacles/PA Wire

Donald Shaw, Dandelion’s music director and the creative producer of Celtic Connections, said: “Just as plants can grow from tiny seeds, great music can grow from small ideas that we nourish till they bloom into full art forms.

"After the pandemic, it seemed even more pronounced to consider the medicinal value of music and its positive impact on mental health, social cohesion and community spirit – similar to the visceral experience of feeling the earth in your hands and the joy you get from watching something grow, so music plays a very important part in this creative programme.

“All of the musicians who feature on our line-up have a passion for the values of Dandelion, sharing our beliefs in environmentalism and individual action against climate change.”

Paul Bush, VisitScotland’s director of events, said: “The Dandelion Festival promises to be an exciting addition to Scotland’s events landscape this summer, bringing together a creative programme infused with the collaborative spirit and environmentalist ethos of the Dandelion project.

A 10-metre tall installation entitled the Pavilion of Perpetual Light provides the striking backdrop to the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park this weekend.

“It’s wonderful to see artists, scientists and food specialists coming together to create a bespoke festival experience for audiences and visitors across Scotland, and we’re proud to support a project that aims to connect creatively with the widest range of audiences in this way.”

The Dandelion Festival is being staged at Kelvingrove Park in Glasgow this weekend.
Father and son Joakim Leijon and Jack Hamilton enjoyed the opening day of the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park.
Three-year-old Tara Meyerricks enjoying some gardening on the opening day of the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow.
A 10-metre tall installation entitled the Pavilion of Perpetual Light provides the striking backdrop to the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park this weekend.
A 10-metre tall installation entitled the Pavilion of Perpetual Light provides the striking backdrop to the Dandelion Festival in Glasgow's Kelvingrove Park this weekend.