Galleries - August 2014

Trained in the 70s at that hotbed of latter-day Scottish Colourism, Dundee’s Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art, Joan Gillespie has added her own distinctive, abstracting touch to the style, one that looks directly back to the common inspiration of French painting and the Fauves in particular. Her Festival show at the Edinburgh Gallery (to 16 August) , with its portraits, genre subjects and still-lifes painted in rich glowing colour with thick brush-strokes and bold outlines, brings J.D. Fergusson to mind, Japanese printmaking too. It makes for a vibrant and original mix. Edinburgh Auctioneers Lyon & Turnbull are holding three Sales in August devoted to art, craft and design, with viewing from 10 Aug at their Broughton Place premises. The morning sale on 13 Aug is for Scottish Silver and Accessories, followed after lunch by Scottish Design, with Contemporary and Post War Art the following morning. JA scotland All the art press focus may well be on the referendum-oriented ‘100 artists, 1 country . . .’ show discussed in Bill Hare’s Festival piece, but there’s always plenty of other very lively stuff going on in the rest of Scotland during August, from both established gallery spaces and the now burgeoning Open Studio scene. Taking it from the top, as they say, first stop is right up in Inverness, the Kilmorack Gallery , situated in the handsome 18th C. Old Kilmorack Church close to the beautiful Beauly River. Derelict for 25 years when owner Tony Davidson took it on in 1997, the place makes a wonderfully spacious and atmospheric venue for some of Scotland’s best contemporary artists. If you get there before 9th August this will also include a special exhibition of work by the hugely gifted Russian figurative painter Eugenia Vronskaya. UK based since the late 80s, RCA- trained Vronskaya paints superb portraits and intensely expressive still-lifes. If you miss that though, you will then find a wonderful cross-section of work by such big names as Joyce Cairns, Will McLean, Helen Denerley, Steve Dilworth and George Wyllie. Then, coming down the East Coast into Aberdeenshire, there is the somehow appropriately named Lost Gallery (just look at the website directions – ‘turn left by the wild cherry tree’) tucked up the picturesque Don Valley, 40 miles inland from Aberdeen, where artist Peter Goodfellow and his wife Jean have been running their wonderfully idiosyncratic gallery for some 20 years. No special shows but, as always a good cross section of painting and more particularly sculpture by excellent artists, eg Pat Semple, Mhairi McGregor, Alex Main (showing this year at the Scottish NPG), stone carver Janet McEwen and, of course, Goodfellow himself. Further down again and we come to the very different landscape of East Fife and East Neuk in particular, with its string of picturesque fishing villages. Pittenweem , as part of its annual Arts Festival (2 to 10 August) is running ‘Open House Art’ in which 30 artists resident in the village and surrounding countryside, (plus 4 featured artists, Steven Campbell among them) exhibit in homes, studios, galleries and public spaces in and around it. Meanwhile over on the West Coast, Tighnabruaich ’s eponymous Gallery in the Kyles of Bute (Argyll) is varying its usual offerings of contemporary Scottish art with an exclusive UK presentation of Belgian artist Joel Moens de Hase’s work “featuring feminine curves used in a most interesting way” . . . Finally, hop on a ferry to the Isle of Arran for the Arran Open Studios 2014. Here, from 15 to 18 August, we are promised a plethora of fine and applied art in a wide range of media from 34 artists (not to mention linked poetry readings from the dynamic Arran Poets group) based on this picturesque island, often described as ‘Scotland in miniature’’. John Andrews 10 GALLERIES AUGUST 2014 L eon Morrocco ‘Still Life with Kettle’ 1969 at Open Eye Gallery. John Bellany OBE RA HRSA ‘Port Seaton’ at Lyon and Turnbull. George Wyllie ‘At Promontory Point’ bronze at Kilmorack Gallery