Wigan students' art with a powerful conservation message

Art and design students from Wigan and Leigh College have impressed judges to reach the final of the Explorers Against Extinction Sketch for Survival exhibition.

Friday, 15th October 2021, 8:12 am
Updated Friday, 15th October 2021, 9:50 am
Orangutan by Lauren Gosson

The exhibition is a global art initiative in aid of conservation, and entrants to the competition had the opportunity for their work to be displayed at the [email protected] in Southbank, London.

Former St Mary’s Catholic High School pupil, Rachel Yates entered the competition after finding out about it from her college tutor while she was studying BTEC Level 3 Art and Design.

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German shepherd by Rachel Yates

With the competition raising awareness of animals that are critically endangered, Rachel wanted to bring attention to the African wild dog and this formed the inspiration for her artwork.

She was delighted to find out her painting was chosen as one of the pieces to be displayed at the exhibition in London.

“When I found out I was one of the finalists I was over the moon as this is a huge deal for me,” said Rachel.

Rachel, who now studies Graphic Design and Illustration at Liverpool John Moores University, plans to visit the gallery with friends to see her artwork (on display from November 17 to 28).

Shark by Alex Colquhoun

“I’m really enjoying the course and living the university experience and after I hope to work within the film industry art sector, she added.

Two more former students who have recently completed their Level 3 Art and Design courses at the college also made the top 100 final, along with current second year student, Megan Sheridan.

They will all have their work displayed in the Explorers Against Extinction virtual gallery space.

Lauren Gosson, Alex Colquhoun and Megan Sheridan have their work shown in an online store from October to help support conservation projects.

Racoon by Megan Sheridan

Art Lecturer Lee Clarke added: “It’s an incredible achievement to have one of our students displaying their work in such a prestigious gallery, together with our three selected artists for the virtual exhibition.

“The college are extremely proud of their accomplishments and all for a good cause too in supporting worldwide conservation projects.”

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