Showing posts with label Artist. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Artist. Show all posts

Friday, 24 August 2018

Art Freedom without Borders


This years theme at the Edinburgh International book festival 2018 is "freedoms". It is important we are free to have our VOICE. Its important for culture, sense of identity, artistic creativity, truth, heritage, communicating, collaborating and so much more. 
At a talk on the highly respected Scottish singer songwriter Michael Marra, a Canadian asked - 'why did we not hear of Marra on the Scottish radio or tv, and how can we have a Voice here in Scotland, if we have no way of expressing it freely and widely? ..The answer is that Marra went to London for a while, but the London music industry wanted to change him and take away the essence of what makes him a great artist. ........ And I wonder often why Scotland is not free, and unlike other nations has no media of its own....

An artist must be true to their art...
Creatives not only require freedom of expression, it’s the life blood they draw on for their creativity. Any artist who tries to stick inside boxes is stifled. I remember a Russian art exhibition at the Tate modern – all were identical, raising arms to the heavens.  


JD Fergusson
The Scottish painters JD Fergusson on modern Scottish painting is his plea for artistic freedom. "Scotland should have an independent art," Artists must challenge assumptions and take a sledgehammer to totems. 
Artist Alexander Moffat and poet Alan Riach , in a new edition of Scottish artist JD Fergusson Modern Scottish Painting, in which he questions the need of artists to conform to market forces. If arts motivation is economic it is not usually successful. Then as now, there was what Moffat and Riach call "the tyranny of academic authority in taste, practice and artistic social priorities". Oddly there have been significant problems with Creative Scotland’s large umbrella organization (which includes film, Games, music, literature, arts) being controlled by the accounts men.  There was the need for artists to conform if they wanted to be embraced by the kind of organisations and institutions who view art as the conduit to boosting the economy and encouraging an ever-growing influx of tourists. 

The need to conform to be embraced by established art institutions. Fergusson's approach to art was embedded in political philosophy and he was convinced of the need for independence. He questioned why "the Glasgow School" faded out. "Was it Scotland's feeling of inferiority? Was it the lack of sympathy or financial support?" 

Nick Barley
**Edinburgh book festival director Nick Barley claims culture and the arts is being adversely affected by the hostile attitude at the UK home office.  
“We’re putting culture at risk, ironically the theme of this years EIBF this year is freedom!  
The UK Home office refusals from Syria are up from 18% to 68% in 2017.  -"Our relationship with authors is being damaged because the system is completely unfit for purpose. They’ve jumped through hoops – to have their applications refused.”  The UK Home Office has refused visas for authors invited to Edinburgh book festival. Festival director Nick Barley says ‘humiliating’ application process will deter writers and damage cultural life in UK. A dozen writers, from African and Middle East countries have had their visa applications refused, amid a process that requires 3 years of bank statements. 

Michale Marra, Arrest this Moment
JD Fergusson was drawn like so many other Scottish artists of the day, to Paris. (Samuel Peploe, Francis Campbell and Boileau Cadell). He writes of the impact that the French capital had-. “Paris was a place of light, freedom, intellectual challenge, learning and research. It allowed me to be Scots as I understand it, and has made me so Scots that I am leaving it and coming home." 

Fergusson’s book is a cri de coeur for artistic freedom and he is always passionate..
Some of the greatest art happen when we challenge the boxes – as when French impressionisms challenged the Paris Salon.



Modern Scottish Painting, by J D Fergusson, published Luath Press, http://www.heraldscotland.com/arts_ents/13415574.J_D_Fergusson_on_modern_Scottish_painting/


Tuesday, 25 April 2017

A New Scottish National Photography Gallery

 470 clergymen who founded the Free Church of Scotland
The Scottish National galleries are showing an exhibition of the work of Scottish photography pioneers,
Robert Adamson and David Hill – ‘Scottish Photography pioneers, A Perfect Chemistry. Fisherfolk of Newhaven,’
27th May to 1st October 2017, TE SCOTTISH PORTRAIT GALLERIES, Queen St, Edinburgh.

It has taken others overseas to recognise the work of these Scottish pioneers in photography. These two world renowned pioneers are mostly unknown in Scotland and are yet more reminders of the neglect of Scotland’s heritage.  

The Museum of Modern Art New York put on an exhibition Photography1930 – at the beginning of the show Hill and Adamson had pride of place as Photography pioneers. In 1989 The Huntarian Glasgow staged another exhibition of Hill and Adamson’s work, which came over from Saskatoon Canada, where it had been acclaimed.


The Scottish galleries hold the biggest collection of their work in the world, yet only exhibit their work every 15 years. In the 1840s Hill and Adamson were partners in the new science of Photography. Adamson portraits of clergymen documented the disruption in the Kirk with the Free church of Scotland. They worked in Rock house, Calton hill, producing portraits and also images of the Forth estuary and coast.

In the 1990s the Royal High school was considered for a new Scottish National Photography gallery  to include Annans, Gillanders, Calum Colvin and others.


**Scottish Artist David Hill 1802 – 1870), landscape painter
He formed Hill & Adamson studio with the photographer Robert Adamson
(1843 - 1847) pioneer photographer. He learned lithography at the school of Design Edinburgh. His landscape paintings exhibited Institution for the Promotion of the Fine Arts in Scotland and he established Scottish Academy1829 with Henry Cockburn.

Pioneer Photographer Robert Adamson (1821–1848) pioneer photographer at Hill & Adamson. Best known for his work with artist David Hill at his photographic studio Rock House Calton hill. Hill and Adamson were commissioned in 1843 to make a group portrait of the 470 clergymen who founded the Free Church of Scotland. Hill had desired to make photographic portraits of the founders as reference material.

Adamson’s collaboration with Hill, who provided skill in composition and lighting, and Adamson’s dexterity with the camera, proved extremely successful. They used the calotype process, and produced a wide range of portraits depicting well-known Scots.

They photographed Fife landscapes, urban scenes, the Scott Monument under construction; 
the fishermen of Newhaven and the fishwives who carried the fish in creels the 3 miles (5 km) uphill to the city of Edinburgh to sell them round the doors, with their cry of “Caller Herrin”
They produced groundbreaking "action" photographs of soldiers and two priests walking side by side.


They produced some 3000 calotypes of mostly portraits within 5 years, 1843 – 1847.
Adamson died unmarried on 14 January 1848, at the age of 26.

In 1851, the works of Hill & Adamson's appeared at The Great Exhibition.
It wasn't until 1872 that their work was rediscovered. In 1905, 1912, and 1914, some of their works appeared in Camera Work. There were also several New York City exhibits at Alfred Stiegiltz’s 291 art gallery and at the National arts club.


Calotype or talbotype is an early Photographic process introduced in 1841 by William Henry Fox Talbot using paper
coated with silver iodide. The term calotype comes from the Greek καλός (kalos), "beautiful", and τύπος (tupos), "impression".

Sunday, 9 April 2017

Scottish Artist Joan Ardley


Exhibitor Museum of Modern art Edinburgh

Ardley developed a special understanding of children in poverty in Townhead tenement streets of Glasgow.  
She built up her images with layers of colour – in oils, watercolour and pastels.  Later she lived in a cottage in Catterline – on the east coast south of Aberdeen..  Some of her later images display more depth. 

An exhibition worth visiting.


 
One of the pre-eminent British artists of the 20th Century”
The Times 
Joan Eardley’s career lasted barely fifteen years: she died in 1963, aged just forty-two. During that time she concentrated on two very different themes: the extraordinarily candid paintings of children in the Townhead area of Glasgow; and paintings of the fishing village of Catterline, just south of Aberdeen, with its leaden skies and wild sea. These two contrasting strands are the focus of this exhibition, which looks in detail at her working process. It draws on a remarkable archive of sketches and photographs which remains largely unknown and unpublished.
The exhibition also features many loans from public and private collections, allowing the viewer to trace specific developments between the photographs, the drawings and the finished paintings.
Image: Joan Eardley, Children and Chalked Wall 2,  1963
Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal © Estate of Joan Eardley. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2016





Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Allan Ramsay festival



New Allan Ramsay festival Carlops 14 - 16 October 2016. 

Allan Ramsay Snr Born 1684 – 1758 Leadhills Lanarkshire, was a Scottish poet who strongly influenced Robert Burns. He was one of the founders of the Easy Club, a group of like-minded men who enjoyed literary discussions over a bottle of claret. It was known for Jacobite sympathies and Ramsay was determined the Scots language would not die out in the years after the Act Of Union (1707) when “North Britishness” was all the rage.
He started to earn money for his verse collections in Scots and then decided to turn his wigmaking shop in the Old Town into a booksellers. He also decided to  rent out books, and became known as the founder of Britain’s first library.

He also composed Scotland’s first opera The Gentle Shepherd, which is a ballad opera both comedy and a homage to the joy of pastoral life, which was his masterpiece. There is monument to Allan Ramsay Snr in Princes St Gardens.

Allan Ramsay Jnr was his eldest son. He studied art in London and Italy and then based himself in Edinburgh in 1738. He established himself as a portrait painter and later moved to London. Where he was appointed official portrait painter to King George III. Earlier this year, his long lost portrait of Charles Edward Stuart, painted at Hollywood in 1745, was bought for the nation at a cost of £1m and now hangs in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. 




Saturday, 16 May 2015

Artist Peter Doig


Peter Doig is a Scottish painter. I read of him recently in a Times magazine article by Bryan Appleyard. Oddly I had never heard of him, even while I often visit art galleries here and abroad. He was born in Edinburgh, the Tate lists him as English.

When others were turning to conceptual art in the 1990s Doig stuck to his painting.  
I went to check on his paintings and was impressed with his subtle use of colour and tones, thoughtful narratives and careful immersive reflections, Beautiful. 


Doig is one of the most renowned living figurative painters, he has settled in Trinidad since 2002. In 2007, his painting White Canoe sold at Sotheby's for $11.3 million, then an auction record for a living European artist. In February 2013, his painting, The Architect's Home in the Ravine, sold for $12 million at a London auction. 

His work is at the Palazzetto Tito, Venice from May 5, Venice biennial of art.   http://www.saatchigallery.com/artists/peter_doig.ht


Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Exhibition Margaret MacDonald

There is a big exhibition of Rennie Macintosh's work at the Huntarian Glasgow. I am a great admirer of his work and it was devastating about the Glasgow Art school fire this year.
His wife Margaret MacDonald, I probably admire her work even more - and her exhibition is away in Helensburgh. I've been writing on women artists recently - and they are usually treated as second class or ignored and hidden away. I notice too how often female artists are referred to as - collaborating with their partners, or being painted by them - when the reality is that these women artists were strong independent artists in their own right.
Margaret influenced the wonderful Austrian artist Klimt and others.
Macintosh credited her with being an important part of his figurative and symbolic interior designs. "Remember, you are half if not four-quarters of all my architectural...Margaret has genius, I have only talent."


Margaret MacDonald, (1864 Scotland) She was celebrated for her panels in Glasgow's famous Willow Tearooms - The May Queen, and Oh ye, all ye that walk in Willowood. Along with her husband Rennie Macintosh and Herbert MacNair, she was one of the most influential members of the collective known as the Glasgow Four. She exhibited with Mackintosh at the 1900 Vienna Secession, where she was an influence on the Secessionists Gustav Klimt and Josef Hoffmann.