Dumfries and Galloway Fine Arts Society is having its 90th Annual Exhibition at Gracefield Arts Centre from Saturday 14th July to Saturday 19th August. This year it is holding a Past and Present Exhibition using both galleries at Gracefield with past presidents and artists going back to 1922 when the exhibitions were started by Oppenheimer, Jessie M King and others.
Archive for ‘Exhibitions’
Moffat Art Collective is holding its third exhibition at Moffat Town Hall from Saturday 19th August to Sunday 20th August. There is free admission and will be open from 10.00am to 4.00pm . There will also be a private viewing by invitation from the group’s members on Friday evening 18th August.
The group currently has eight members whose work includes painting in acrylic, oils, watercolour, cartoons and pen and ink. Members also work in wood and beaten metal and in stained glass so a good variety of work will be available to view and purchase.
Free drop in family activities at Dumfries Museum
10am – 12noon or 2pm – 4pm on each of the following Tuesdays:
4 July Glorious stained glass
Inspired by the rose window at Sweetheart Abbey create beautiful coloured stained glass window pictures.
11 July Super scribes
The monks of Sweetheart Abbey were experts in beautiful handwriting. Try 14th century writing with quill pens. Make gold and jewel coloured illuminated letters.
18 July Medieval power wheels
Medieval Cistercian monks used water wheel technology. Have fun playing with water wheel models and make your own simple wheel to take home and try out.
25 July Heart boxes
Learn about Lady Devorgilla who founded Sweetheart Abbey. Decorate a heart shaped box to keep your treasured possessions in.
1 August Wonder weaving
The medieval monks of Sweetheart Abbey wore a woven white wool robe called a cuccula. Have a go at different kinds of weaving and make a bookmark to take home.
8 August Beautiful books
Discover lots of ways to make fun folded and decorated books.
15 August Grotesque gargoyles
Find out about these scary sculptures on medieval abbeys and castles. Make your own clay gargoyle.
Drop in gallery activities available every day from 24 June until 31 August
• Sweetheart gallery trail
• Try writing the 14th century way
• Contribute a decorated heart to the Sweetheart mobile
• Gargoyle face masks
• Colouring sheets and quizzes
Call for expressions of interest -Engage
Deadline: 22 June 2017 at 10:00
Engage is seeking Generation ART host venues in Scotland and England, 2018-20
Following the success of Generation ART: Young Artists on Tour 2015-16, Engage are seeking support from the Arts Council England Strategic touring programme and other sources, including trusts and foundations to run a more ambitious Generation ART touring programme in 2018-20, hosted by venues in England and Scotland. Engage and Engage Scotland anticipate exhibitions will take place in a maximum of three locations in England and one in Scotland.
They’re asking for expressions of interest from venues in England and Scotland from December 2018 – May 2020, for a touring exhibition of children and young people’s art selected through an open submission process. The tour will include an active engagement programme aimed at children and young people and families and audiences new to the arts.
Any venue with an interest in showing a touring exhibition of children and young people’s art work may submit an expression of interest. Successful venues/organisations must demonstrate that: they are located in an area of low cultural engagement or with a lack of access to high quality visual art and/or are engaging with audiences new to the arts. The deadline for expressions of interest is 10am, Thursday 22 June 2017.
Annual summer celebration of art and science around Crawick Multiverse, a 55-acre artland in Dumfries & Galloway designed by Charles Jencks. Enjoy an outdoor performance, exhibition and engaging public lectures inspired by this year’s theme of ‘Cosmic Collisions’.
Events commence on Friday 23 June with a preview of ‘Cosmic Collisions’, an exhibition at MERZ Studio, Sanquhar that includes new work by Charles Jencks and architect Daniel Libeskind, followed by a talk by world renowned cosmologist Prof Carlos Frenk who will share his insights into the origins of the universe.
On Saturday 24 June, a series talks by leading thinkers at Sanquhar Town Hall will be punctuated by a lunchtime visit to the Crawick Multiverse for a picnic, music, the opening of Charles Jencks’ latest installation and an exhilarating site specific performance of ‘Sea Hames’, the latest work from physical theatre company Oceanallover.
Speakers include Professor Martin Hendry MBE, Head of the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Glasgow, Professor Monica Grady CBE, leading space scientist, primarily known for her work on meteorites and Daniel Libeskind, architect of Berlin’s Jewish Museum and Ground Zero site New York. The talks will close with a conversation between Charles Jencks and Daniel Libeskind. Friends for many years, they both pursue the question of meaning in design, and how the universe inspires it.
Scotland’s premier visual art and craft open studios event got off to a cracking start yesterday as 93 artists and makers threw open their doors to the public.
Among those taking part were hat maker Kay Ribbens who has been participating right from the start in 2003.
Kay, based near Kirkcowan, is renowned for her beautiful and extraordinary hand crocheted hats. She said: “It’s been a great start to the weekend. People love Spring Fling because it’s always such high quality art and craft that’s exhibited, and it never rests on its laurels, there’s always offers lots that’s exciting and new.”
The event is taking place across Dumfries and Galloway from 27-29 May and includes painters, printmakers, woodworkers, ceramicists, photographers and many others.
Every participant is specially selected, and this year the line-up included seven artists and makers based at the Wasps studios in Kirkcudbright. Among them is Suzi Plunkett who creates incredibly detailed illustrations with thousands of hand drawn tiny dots and circles.
Joanna Macaulay, Events and Exhibitions Manager for Upland Arts Development, which runs Spring Fling, said: “We couldn’t have wished for a better start to our 15th birthday event – great weather, lots of visitors and a huge range of studios to visit. What’s particularly special is that we have such a mix of artists and makers, some like Kay who have been part of Spring Fling from the very start, some like Suzi who have joined us in recent years, and others who are absolutely new. It means that people can see the latest work from their favourite artists and also find something completely fresh and unexpected.”
For full details of Spring Fling see the website at www.spring-fling.co.uk.
Image credit – Neail Hanna
Meet amazing artists and makers and see remarkable places during Scotland’s top open studios visual arts and craft weekend
Spring Fling is a fabulous chance to meet amazing artists in wonderful places from castles to cottages and kirks to clock towers.
Thousands of visitors are expected to enjoy the 15th annual open studios event, taking place across Dumfries and Galloway this Bank Holiday weekend.
Among the unusual venues where the 93 painters, photographers, jewellers, ceramicists, print-makers, wood workers, sculptors, textile designers and others will be exhibiting are:
- The Tower House, Moniaive: Each week painter and mixed media artist Silvana McLean and her husband Alasdair wind the village clock that keeps the local community ticking along on time. It is located in the high tower on the front of their home. The building including the bell tower was started in 1865 and finished in 1867. Much of Silvana’s work, though, is inspired by Iceland. “I was interested in glaciation and visited Iceland to find out more – once I got there I was absolutely smitten by it’s beauty. I also love the people’s ‘can do’ attitude and the way they work with nature. In my work I try to capture the island’s landscape and its culture.”
- The Laundry, Kirkandrews: Situated beside a remarkable castle-like St Andrew’s kirk, which is open for teas and coffees during Spring Fling, Linda Mallet’s home and studio was originally a community laundry built by philanthropist James Brown of Knockbrex. An abstract painter who makes her own pigments from local rocks and clays, she said: “Rather than painting the landscape I now paint with the landscape.” Linda is also deeply concerned about the environmental harm caused to the nearby beaches and wildlife by litter and pollution and litter at sea. In response she has started to collect the lengths of marine cordage she finds washed up and weave it into placemats, coasters and miniature baskets. She said: “There is a real litter problem, which is bad for the environment and for wildlife. I’m turning it on its head in a small way by picking up some of the things that other people throw away and trying to make something beautiful from them. At the same time I hope to draw people’s attention to the problem of litter and environmental damage.”
- The Little Theatre, Lockerbie: The former temporary classroom was converted into an 88-seat theatre in 1964 and fitted with seats from a Glasgow cinema. It’s home to the Lockerbie Drama Club which produces two or three plays a year. This year it will have a new role as the entrance hall and stage become Bella Green’s exhibition space. She said: “I went to a production at the Little Theatre and thought what a wonderful exhibition space it would make, and I’m delighted that they have agreed.” Bella loves exploring multiple images through the form of triptychs and creates a wide variety of works, including transparent window pieces. She said: “I make playful, colourful compositions from observing everyday objects and places, and also inspired by my visits to places like Venice.”
- Abbots Tower, a small castle outside New Abbey, is home to photographer Laura Hudson Mackay, whose studios are in the converted outbuildings. Potter Archie McCall’s studio is in the lovely garden of the converted mill where he lives, also at New Abbey. Another former mill, Mill on the Fleet at Gatehouse of Fleet will be the location for collage maker Gail Kelly and Photographer Caroline McQuistin.
Fascinating art and artists
One of the great appeals of Spring Fling is the wonderful art, artists (and pets) that visitors will meet along the way.
- Ailsa Black: There’s a Beryl Cook quality about Ailsa Black’s gentle artwork, with its charming depictions of people and animals and villages. Many of Ailsa’s paintings show moments of companionship between humans, birds and animals. Indeed, Jack her six-year-old Collie and her husband make frequent appearances in her pictures as they wander the shorelines near their home in Carsethorn. She said: “I love the Scottish seaside and the villages that cling to its shores. It’s these places and the birds and animals I see that tend to feature strongly in my paintings. And whether it’s squirrels and butterflies, cats and mice, hares and robins, they often seem to be having a friendly chat.” Ailsa will be exhibiting at Kirkbean Village Hall.
- Victor Henderson: Renowned for his striking use of colour, Victor’s work is full of variety – vivid flowers, scenes of Venice, through to images of the martyrdom of St Sebastian. A former psychotherapist, Victor’s life has been spent helping others. During his career he supported people who had experienced everything from childhood traumas to torture in war zones. He believes that much art emerges from the unconscious. Victor said: “My own paintings begin with a mark, sometimes an accidental one, and develop from there. They are always going from the known to the unknown.” During Spring Fling he will be exhibiting at Cannonbridge Village Hall, though the studio where he works (and often shares with Ru the whippet) is at Drumlanrig Castle, and the flowers in castle gardens sometimes appear in his work.
- Sarah Keast and Melville Brotherston: Moniaive is famed as Scotland’s Festival Village, but it is also a hotbed of visual art. Sarah Keast, a former geologist, is a well-established painter and original printmaker who is using aerial photographs to create semi-abstracted birds-eye views of the landscapes near the village. These often feature the stone walls and circular sheep pens that were so important to past farming practices and are now gently collapsing back into the land. She said: “All my work is motivated by my life-long connection to the environment. It’s been amazing to compare the aerial photographs taken just after the Second World War to modern ones. You really notice how the sheep pens and walls that took such immense human effort to build are falling into decay and how the fields have enormously increased in size as farming practices change.” Melville, known for his dramatic use of colour, light and tone, is also working on a series about Moniaive. These ground-level paintings are studies of the three glens that lead to the village – Dalwhat Glen, Craigdarroch Glen and Castlefairn Glen. He said: “Many of my paintings were inspired by the far north of Scotland, but now I’ve turned my attention to the landscapes all around me, with the glens, burns and rivers that flow to and from Moniaive. This is such a wonderful place – it has a lovely quietness and beauty all its own.” Sarah will be exhibiting at the Masonic Hall in Moniaive and Melville about a mile away at Mill Studio, Dungalston Farm.
Joanna Macaulay, Events and Exhibitions Manager for Upland Arts Development, which runs Spring Fling, said: “The magic of Spring Fling is the way it combines lovely visual arts and craft, remarkable people and wonderful places that visitors often don’t have the chance to see. This year is our 15th anniversary event, so we are particularly looking forward to welcoming visitors to Dumfries and Galloway to enjoy everything it has to offer.”
For full details of everyone taking part in Spring Fling see the website at www.spring-fling.co.uk.
Phantom tideline of curios to be created in a scenic Scottish cove
Mysterious objects washed up by the sea will form the heart of a temporary artwork on a picturesque Scottish beach.
Robbie Coleman and Jo Hodges have spent months scouring the shorelines of Dumfries and Galloway for detritus and small treasures that have been lost, abandoned and thrown away.
And from 27 to 29 May they will be used to form EDGE, an installation designed to conjure up tales of parted lovers, lost sailors and forgotten voyages.
EDGE is part of the 15th annual Spring Fling – Scotland’s premier open studios visual art and craft event, which involves nearly 100 artists and makers across the region.
Robbie and Jo have also made, found and been given other curiosities to add to their beachcombing finds.
Visitors to the secluded cove at Carrick Foreshore, near Knockbrex, will encounter a phantom tideline with everything from suitcases (still packed for journeys), a birdcage and a collection of brass instruments, through to a jewellery box, a working phonograph, an astronaut’s helmet and even an old church organ. Hidden within the tideline will be boxes and trunks that visitors will be able to open and explore.
All are bleached ivory and white, with many now encrusted by limpets.
And for those who go along at 3.30pm on the Saturday, there will be specially written sea shanties and other songs, from Scottish country punk band The Hoolits.
Jo said: “Beaches have always marked the border between different worlds, and we have a fascination with the objects washed up there and the stories they tell.
“They have the power to fire our imaginations and get us wondering how long they had been adrift, who had been the last person to touch them and why they let them go.
“EDGE will be visually striking, stretched out in a white ribbon along the beach for people to explore, and even to do what we have done, scavenge bits they like and take them home at the end of the project”
Jo and Robbie also hope the installation will get people thinking about the reasons behind people’s voyages to and from Scotland.
Robbie said: “The sea has always been a place of danger, mystery and myth. Tales from the rich history of this specific coastal site from 18th century emigration to smuggling and shipwrecks, are woven into the work.
“People are still embarking on perilous journeys across oceans to escape persecution or in the hope of a better life somewhere over the horizon line.
“The objects in the EDGE will be the fragments of many stories, some of them playful and fantastical, and others of peril and exile.”
EDGE is an Upland public art project commissioned for Spring Fling 2017.
Joanna Macaulay, Events and Exhibitions Manager for Upland Arts Development, which runs Spring Fling, said: “Jo and Robbie have really captured the essence of our relationship with the sea and the stories of so many other lives that we glimpse for a moment when we find something washed up on a beach.
“EDGE promises to be a really magical piece of work and will give visitors the chance to discover a fabulously beautiful corner of Dumfries and Galloway.”
Visit EDGE at the Carrick foreshore during Spring Fling 2017 (find the exact location here).
For full details of everyone taking part in Spring Fling see the website at www.spring-fling.co.uk.
The Lockerbie Old School Project have been working with Lockerbie Academy and The Holywood Trust to put together an exhibition on the past, present and future of the former Dryfesdale School in Lockerbie.
The launch of this exhibition will take place on Saturday May 20th in the Dryfesdale Hall, Lockerbie.
They have been busy gathering memories from former pupils and teachers of the old school, learning what it was like to work and learn in this wonderful building. You have the opportunity to re-live funny stories of troublesome students, scary headmasters and playground games that they’ve gathered in the new interactive exhibition.
Refreshments will be provided all day. Art and poetry activities are available for children all morning.
There’ll also be a short talk from historian Isabelle Gow, who will tell you what she’s learnt while gathering local stories. Isabelle will also talk to students from Lockerbie Academy to hear their experiences during this exciting project.
Programme of the day:
10am – Exhibition opens with children’s poetry and drawing activities
1pm – Refreshments served
1.30pm – ‘A Living Building’ film showing
1.45pm – Readings from Lockerbie Writers Group
2pm – Talk from Isabelle Gow
Exhibition open until 4pm.
You can reserve your free ticket here:
Wilhelmina Barns-Graham works in exhibition by Threadneedle Prize winner Patricia Cain ahead of international symposium
A new exhibition by Patricia Cain, including works by the celebrated Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, aims to take visitors inside the mind of the artist.
Seeing Beyond the Immediate, opens at Gracefield Arts Centre in Dumfries on 20 May and will later be shown in Hawick and Glasgow. It explores the artistic process from first idea to completed artwork.
The works by Cain, past winner of the Aspect Prize and Threadneedle Prize, have all been created since her move from Glasgow to Dumfries and Galloway three years ago. It is her first exhibition featuring an entirely new body of art since 2011.
Over the years her subject matter has ranged from landscape to forensically detailed architectural studies, and more recently organic structures. The unifying element is that she is always digging deep to expose underlying structures and the thinking that goes on behind the making.
Cain’s exhibits will contrast with original prints by St Andrews-born and Edinburgh trained Wilhelmina Barns-Graham, a leading light of the St Ives School. The interest in Barns-Graham (affectionately known as “Willie”) developed after winning a residency to spend three months at her former home in St Andrews in Fife.
Cain said: “What I discovered was that while we sometimes had little in common aesthetically, we shared a great deal in the way we tried to look beyond the immediate. The exhibition gives insights into why artists move away from representational work that simply reproduces what they observe towards something which captures an essence. It’s about how artists look at the world, and how when they look at one thing they often see beyond to quite another.”
The process is far from straightforward according to Cain, whose doctorate from Glasgow School of Art looked at the relationship between art and thought. She believes that artists rarely start out with an exact mental image of what the end result will be.
She said: “I am fascinated by the reasons why I, as an artist, do something. It’s often not consciously planned. I have to have faith that things become clear through a process of making. Although my decisions may be unique to me, this subconscious process is something we all engage in, one way or another. The fact it’s hidden makes it so interesting.
“I’m interested to understand what is happening at that point. For me, to understand the process, I have to step back and once I do, I see the patterns there.”
The Gracefield exhibition will include 90 pieces plus an animated video in six specifically themed rooms. Two works by Scottish abstract artist William Gear have also been loaned in addition to those by Barns-Graham.
It will be accompanied by an international symposium, also entitled Seeing Beyond the Immediate, bringing high-calibre speakers to Gracefield on 15 June, which Cain is organising in conjunction with the Upland Art Development organisation.
Among the special guests is Dr Francis Halsall, Dublin-based academic and art writer whose main interests are in the history, theory and practice of modern and contemporary art and in philosophical aesthetics. The audience will also be able to hear from Fluxus artist and organiser Louwrien Wijers who will join the event via Skype from her home in the Netherlands.
Joyce Woodcock, Interim Director of Upland CIC, said: “Dumfries and Galloway has a growing reputation as a centre for the arts – something that will be powerfully reaffirmed by the symposium and exhibition.
“Patricia Cain is not only a leading artist but an important thinker in her field, so we are delighted to be working with her and welcoming such an outstanding group of speakers, for what will be a genuinely significant cultural event.”
The Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust is lending a dozen original prints for the exhibition.
Geoffrey Bertram, of the Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust, said: “It was wonderful to have Patricia Cain as our artist-in-residence in 2013. She became very engaged with Willie Barns-Graham’s life and work, fully absorbing the atmosphere of the house and having access to the trust’s important collection of Willie’s art. Given our connection with Patricia and the quality of her proposal the trustees did not hesitate to support this exhibition.”
Andrew Leitch, Creative Industries and Capital Projects Officer at Creative Scotland said: “This exhibition clearly demonstrates Dumfries and Galloway’s continuing growing reputation as a centre for the arts of the highest international quality.
“That this will be accompanied by an international symposium bringing high-calibre speakers to Gracefield further cements Upland Art’s importance as a key player within Scotland’s arts infrastructure. Creative Scotland is delighted to be able to support Upland Art, The Stove, and the creation of a new space for contemporary art in the Kirkcudbright Art Gallery.”
Patricia Cain with her glass paints palette.
Photography for Spring Fling from: Colin Hattersley Photography – firstname.lastname@example.org – www.colinhattersley.com – 07974 957 388