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Edinburgh set to become Europe's most creative city as winners of #CEawards16 are revealed

Photo credit: Ross Fraser McLean / StudioRoRo

The achievements of Edinburgh's creative sector were recognised and celebrated last night at the annual Creative Edinburgh Awards as the winners in nine categories were revealed. Highlighting innovative thinking, great ideas and work to be proud of, no matter how big or small, the award categories include; City, Collaboration, Commercial, Creativity, Independent, Leadership, Social, Startup, Student. As one of the world's largest city based creative networks with over 3000 members Edinburgh's vibrant creative sector includes everything from architects and animators to performers and creative producers. This year's roll call of winners reflects the diversity of the talent working in Edinburgh today.

Award winning sculpture park Jupiter Artland is recognised with The City Award recognising its contribution to Edinburgh's people and profile. Choreographer Janis Claxton and composer Pippa Murphy win The Collaboration Award for their touching POP-UP Duets which received international acclaim during this year's Edinburgh Festivals. Experience and service design consultancy Nile bring home the bacon winning The Commercial Award for the unique project The People's Money working with the public and other creatives to design new banknotes for the Royal Bank of Scotland.

Highlighting the inclusiveness and openness of the creative sector The Scottish Poetry Library win The Creativity Award for their drag queen poetry night The Library is Open! hosted by Jean Francois Kerbs and Iain Morrison. Putting a cultural spotlight on Leith, arts producer Morvern Cunningham wins The Independent Award for her work on Leith Late amongst other projects.Another cultural producer Adam Castle receives The Leadership Award for his vision, creation and delivery of the Edinburgh Artists’ Moving Image Festival (EAMIF) and LGBTQ+ friendly cabaret night Pollyanna.

WHALE Arts in Wester Hailes pick up The Social Award for their vital Street Arts project where artists engage with engage with interesting young people and create new participatory work in an unexpected environment. Design and motion studio Werewolfwalk away with The Startup Award fresh from winning First Prize at the International Projection Mapping Competition in Moscow earlier this year. Finally The Student Award goes to illustrator Paula Caffrey whose book Pronouncing Poland created to help her understand her partner's family wowed the judges.

To celebrate the nominees outstanding efforts, almost 500 people gathered to hear this year's winners. Edinburgh's iconic Central Hall venue was tranformed thanks to projections by Unstable Creations, which provided the perfect backdrop for music curated by Nothing Ever Happens Here, Rhythm Machine and She-Bang Rave Unit. It simply wouldn't be a Creative Edinburgh birthday bash without a cake, and this year it was courtesy of the fine folks at Jelly & Gin.

Speaking following the announcement of the awards Creative Edinburgh Director Janine Matheson said: “Edinburgh is one of the world's most creative cities and its important we shout about this world class talent working in our city. The award winners and nominees shortlisted showcase how broad and vibrant this creative sector is. In recognising this talent we want to make people in Edinburgh and beyond aware just how valuable these creative individuals and businesses are and how important their contribution to life in the city is.”

Echoing Janine's sentiments Convenor of the Economy Committee for City of Edinburgh Council Cllr Gavin Barrie said, “The calibre of the submissions in this year’s Creative Edinburgh Awards has been truly inspiring and congratulations are due to both the winners and all who were nominated across the nine different categories.”

Clive Gillman, Director of Creative Industries, Creative Scotland, commented: “The Creative Edinburgh Awards are a fantastic way of supporting and raising the profile of talented projects and people across the city. From internationally acclaimed work by Janis Claxton and Pippa Murphy, the outstanding efforts of Morvern Cunningham, to WHALE Arts, the creative heart of Wester Hailes, it’s terrific to see such a diverse array of creative talent celebrated. Congratulations to all the winners and nominees. These awards are important as they recognise and celebrate the impact that arts and creativity have on communities. Arts and culture make a real difference to the places we live and contribute to improving our lives and wellbeing. I would also like to congratulate Creative Edinburgh on the important role they play in bringing together creative people from across the city, nurturing talent, encouraging connections and profiling work.”

The awards highlight great ideas, inspired thinking and recognise the outstanding creativity of our city across all platforms and sectors, from process to outcome. The 2016 Award winners will receive a bespoke commissioned sculpture by 2015 Creative Edinburgh Creativity Award winner Alasdair Thomson sculpted from the volcanic dolerite of Salisbury Crags.

Creative Edinburgh helps creative individuals and businesses create, collaborate and stay connected. The largest city based creative network in the world with almost 3000 members Creative Edinburgh are committed to advancing the value and impact of creativity, both locally and internationally working together to help creative individuals and businesses create, collaborate and stay connected at every stage of their careers. Creative Edinburgh is funded by City of Edinburgh Council and Creative Scotland. This year's awards are sponsored by FreeAgent, Administrate, CodeClan, CodeBase and Black Box.

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