Bogside Artist William Kelly passes away

The late William Kelly (centre) pictured here in September 2014 with fellow Bogside Artists Kevin Hasson with William's brother Tom Kelly at their Union Hall Place premises as they marked 20 years since their first work. DER3514MC130

The late William Kelly (centre) pictured here in September 2014 with fellow Bogside Artists Kevin Hasson with William's brother Tom Kelly at their Union Hall Place premises as they marked 20 years since their first work. DER3514MC130

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One of the internationally renowned artists who helped transform Derry’s Bogside into a major tourist destination has passed away.

William Kelly from the Bogside Artists passed away on Tuesday morning.

Mr Kelly, along with his brother Tom and Kevin Hasson, created the series of large murals across the Bogside depicting key scenes from Derry’s past, with the support of the community and Housing Executive.

The paintings document events such as the Battle of the Bogside and Bloody Sunday, as well as murals dedicated to peace and peacemakers.

The Bogside Artists’ 27ft murals have transformed the Bogside area of Derry into an iconic tourist destination that has become one of the city’s most recognisable landmarks.

A talented author and artist, Mr Kelly and his colleagues have also been involved in cross-community work in Derry.

Over the past 20 years, beyond Derry the artists have received international recognition, with commissions, exhibitions and university lectures and visits across Europe, America, Canada, Australia, and China.

Among the highlights have been creating murals at the Smithsonian in Washington DC and in China, receiving the Joseph Beuys Award, and also more recently the Kurt Schwitters Award.