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My love and native land, farewell

posted 10 Feb 2009, 01:10 by David Rintoul   [ updated 28 Dec 2009, 16:16 ]

In response to the Homecoming Scotland 2009, designed to welcome those with Scots heritage back to the homeland, the City Art Centre sets out to find the roots of the Scottish diaspora – who emigrated originally, and why?

My love and native land, farewell, featuring works from the City Art Centre’s collection, explores the living and working conditions in Scotland when emigration was at its height.

From 1650 Scots from both urban and rural life were enticed abroad. The major Scottish cities were known to be overcrowded, unsanitary, and constantly beset by smog.

Farther afield, work for farmers and fishermen consisted of difficult manual labour.

The increasing overhaul of land management spawned a class of dispossessed and landless workers.

In the Highlands and Lowlands, social dislocation and poverty prompted Scots to seek a fresh start.

The United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand were the most common destinations, idealised for their vast tracts of unclaimed land.

By 1900 over three million emigrants had left, establishing Scottish culture around the globe.

The City Art Centre's licensed café can provide you with a cup of tea or coffee, or a three-course meal.

City Art Centre (map)

Open: Monday to Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 12:00 - 17:00
Admission Free, charging for occasional exhibitions

Visual Arts Scotland 2009

posted 10 Feb 2009, 00:42 by David Rintoul   [ updated 28 Dec 2009, 16:19 ]

The City Art Centre proudly hosts the free annual exhibition for the first time.

This is a rare chance to see some of the best painting, sculpture, printmaking, jewellery, ceramics, glass, textiles, furniture and photography in Scotland all under one roof.

This year invited artists include furniture maker Gareth Neal.

Innovation and freshness are hallmarks of each Visual Arts Scotland exhibition.

Compiled from an open submission of work, the display also gives visitors the unique opportunity to purchase works by a wide range of artists and makers.

Visual Arts Scotland

The City Art Centre's licensed café can provide you with a cup of tea or coffee, or a three-course meal.

City Art Centre (map)

Open: Monday to Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 12:00 - 17:00
Admission Free, charging for occasional exhibitions

Famous Scots

posted 27 Jan 2009, 10:01 by David Rintoul   [ updated 6 Feb 2009, 04:45 ]

Billy Connolly’s family history is the subject of a free exhibition in the ScotlandsPeople Centre from 26th January until 27th March 2009.

On Friday 23rd January Linda Fabiani MSP, Minister for Europe External Affairs and Culture, launched the ‘Famous Scots’ exhibition. Starting with Billy Connolly, the rolling exhibition explores the family history of six well-known Scots, changing every eight weeks and running through to Hogmanay 2009. ‘Famous Scots’ is being supported by Homecoming Scotland as part of this year’s official celebrations.

The ScotlandsPeople partners, including the National Archives of Scotland, are delighted to have the opportunity to present Billy Connolly’s genealogy, and to highlight some of Scotland’s key ancestry resources available to everyone for tracing their own family history.

The exhibition traces Billy Connolly’s Glasgow roots back to his ancestors from Ireland and the Isle of Mull. They came in search of work in the industries that made Glasgow the second city of the Empire. Connolly’s early years in the shipyards was part of a family tradition. The living conditions of his ancestors are also explored in the exhibition, which is based on original documents, some of which are displayed for the first time.

Full Story...

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I am ever yours, Robert Burns

posted 9 Jan 2009, 22:54 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 17:39 ]

Robert Burns (1759-1796), Scotland’s national bard, is best-remembered for his timeless songs and poems. Yet he was also an accomplished letter-writer who corresponded with over 200 people during his short life.

This small but significant selection of manuscripts on display at the Writers’ Museum focuses on 8 recipients of letters from Burns between 1783 and 1796.

The letters themselves help to reveal something of Burns’ character – his strengths and weaknesses, his humour and seriousness, his frankness and common-sense, his friends and acquaintances, his family ties, his love of his country and his history.

Running 'til 18th April 2009

The Writer's Museum
Situated in Lady Stair's House, built in 1622, The Writers' Museum is dedicated to the lives and work of Scotland's great literary figures, in particluar Robert Burns (1759-1796), Sir Walter Scott (1771-1832) and Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894).

The rich collection of portraits, manuscripts and personal exhibits include Burns' writing desk, Scott's chessboard, dining table and the printing press on which his Waverley novels were produced. The Stevenson collection is the most significant in the United Kingdom. Other prominent Scottish writers, including contemporary authors, are featured in the museum's programme of temporary exhibitions.

The courtyard immediately outside The Writers' Museum has been designated as Makers' Court. Here you can find inscriptions commemorating famous Scottish writers, from the 14th century to the present.

The Writer's Museum
Lady Stair's Close, Lawnmarket, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH1 2PA (map)
Open: Monday to Saturday 10.00 to 17.00
Admission Free

Contact Information:
Tel: 0131 529 4901

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Bob Dylan - The Drawn Blank Series

posted 4 Jan 2009, 14:32 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 19:48 ]

The Drawn Blank Series

The Drawn Blank Series is the most comprehensive and authoritative collection of Bob Dylan's art ever assembled and casts a vibrant new light on the creativity of one of the world's most important influential cultural figures.

Bob Dylan has been a committed visual artist for more than four decades. Based on drawings and sketches made by Dylan while on the road during the period of 1989 to 1992, the paintings in The Drawn Blank Series visually echo the hallmarks of Dylan’s prose, poetry and music.

Bob Dylan is one of the world’s most popular and acclaimed songwriters, musicians and performers, having sold more than 110 million albums and performed literally thousands of shows around the world in a career spanning five decades.

The City Art Centre's licensed café can provide you with a cup of tea or coffee, or a three-course meal.

City Art Centre (map)
Located in the heart of the capital, with six exhibition galleries, the City Art Centre is Scotland's emporium of the visual arts. It is both home of the City's collection of Scottish Art, and one of the UK's leading temporary exhibition spaces.

Since opening in 1980, the City Art Centre has mounted a huge range of exhibitions, from rare Egyptian antiquities to the most innovative contemporary art, from Michelangelo drawings to Star Trek.

The scale and range of the programme has made the gallery one of Britain's most visited exhibition centres. The City's fine art collection consists of around 3,500 works of Scottish art: paintings, watercolours, drawings, prints, photographs, sculpture and tapestries, including works by McTaggart, Fergusson, Peploe and Eardley.

Through purchase funds provided by the Jean E Watson Bequest, the collection has been kept up-to-date, by the acquisition of works by contemporary Scottish artists, including Davie, Blackadder, Paolozzi and Bellany.

In 1997, the collection was further enriched by a substantial gift from the Scottish Arts Council. The holdings also include topographical views of Edinburgh and portraits. Exhibitions drawn from the collection are a regular feature of the City Art Centre's programme.

Open: Monday to Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 12:00 - 17:00
Admission Free, charging for occasional exhibitions

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Stills Gallery: Urban Reflections

posted 4 Jan 2009, 12:30 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 20:05 ]

Warped, fragmented and endlessly repeated. Responses to the urban experience have ranged from unbridled enthusiasm for these vibrant hubs of glittering prosperity to examinations of the psychological shadows of city living: alienation, anxiety, tension and fear.

The current age of global cities is marked by new geographies and social relations moulded by advancing technologies and economic systems.

How do contemporary artists respond to these conditions? Urban Reflections presents works by artists from across different generations and locations as they reflect literally and metaphorically on the theme of mirroring the city.

The development of industrialised modernity in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries brought a fascination with new technologies, speed and progress.

Population explosions resulted in new types of urban environments while advances in optics and chemistry gave birth to photography and film. Since then the lens and the city have been bound together in artists’ imaginations as they attempt to represent, comment upon and re-imagine their everyday environments through documentary, avant-garde experimental approaches, photomontage and film.

Urban Reflections presents five different artistic positions which reveal the range of contemporary responses to the city.

Rather than focusing upon Modernist visions of tightly controlled planning grids and utopian architecture, the exhibition presents work which explores the human imprint upon and experience of the urban landscape.

Drawing references from pop culture, urban studies, literature, and the documentary genre each artist seeks to explore a different facet of contemporary urban realities. A concern with the fragmentation of perception runs through the works: images are overlaid on top of one another, spaces and emotions are distorted. In these places there are no fixed horizon lines; boundaries between imagination and reality are blurred, everything reflects and nothing is truly transparent.

Nina Fischer & Maroan el Sani (Germany), Dan Graham (USA), Sabine Hornig (Germany), Santu Mofokeng (South Africa), Rhona Warwick (Scotland)

Curated by Kirsten Lloyd and Christine Nippe

Running 'till 22nd March 2009

Stills Gallery, 23 Cockburn Street, Edinburgh EH1 1BP (map)

Urban Reflections is presented in partnership with Goethe Institut Glasgow and is supported by Habitat and Eastern

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NMS Exhibition: Jean Muir: A Fashion Icon

posted 4 Jan 2009, 10:49 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 20:31 ]

Explore the workings of this 20th century fashion designer, and unravel the distinctive 'Jean Muir' look.

Jean Muir was an iconic figure in the world of fashion design. In 2005, the Jean Muir collection of over 18,000 items was donated to National Museums Scotland by her widower, Harry Leuckert. This cutting edge exhibition will feature selected highlights from this amazing collection, on display to the public for the first time.

The British designer held a unique place in the international fashion scene, from her emergence in the swinging 1960s to her death in 1995. In Paris, she was 'the new queen of the dress', and in New York, 'the jewel in the crown of British fashion'. To her customers she was 'addictive' and in her own words, 'evolutionary not revolutionary'.

Jean Muir: A Fashion Icon celebrates the life and workings of this individual and revered dressmaker.

Find out why she obtained such accolades through a stunning display of garments, sketches, patterns, accessories, catwalk footage and fashion photography. We also have a fantastic programme of events with a Jean Muir theme starting in November - make sure you book early to avoid disappointment!

Jean Muir: A Fashion Icon
Dates: Running 'til 15th March 2009
Times: Daily, 10:00 - 17:00
Cost: Free!
Suitable for: Everybody!
Venue: Special Exhibitions gallery, Level 3, National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh (map)

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NMS: Exhibition: Gifted

posted 4 Jan 2009, 02:31 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 20:45 ]

See, love, buy

Now in its fourth year, this popular exhibition gives you the chance to see and buy innovative new work from some of Scotland's most talented designers.

Ceramics, glass, jewellery and textiles will be on display, offering limited edition gifts for all tastes and budgets.

This year we will feature a selection of items from the designers for sale in our online shop.

Further information on the craftspeople exhibiting in Gifted will be available shortly.

Beat the crowds and do your Christmas shopping in style! Or, wait till the Christmas rush is over and treat yourself to something gorgeous from the exhibition - Gifted will be on 'til Sunday 11th January.

Sign up for updates on this exhibition on our e-newsletter sign up page and enjoy a relaxed shopping experience.

Dates: Friday 7th November 2008 - Sunday 11th January 2009
Times: Daily, 10:00 - 16:45
Cost: Free!
Suitable for: Everybody!
Venue: Special Exhibitions gallery, Level three, National Museum of Scotland, Chambers Street, Edinburgh (map)

2008 Jewellery exhibitors
2008 Glass & Ceramics exhibitors
2008 Textiles & Books exhibitors

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The John Murray Archive

posted 3 Jan 2009, 20:37 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 21:10 ]

The writers and thinkers of John Murray's publishing firm shaped the modern world through their works of literature, science, exploration and politics.

This exhibition draws on material from the John Murray Archive. It uses state-of-the-art exhibition technology to bring to life the work and lives of a changing selection of the publisher's most influential figures.

Those featured in the first line-up include Lord Byron, Charles Darwin and David Livingstone. Learn how they contributed to one of the greatest periods of human progress and creativity. See if you could publish your own international bestseller.

Permanent exhibition

National Library of Scotland, George IV Bridge, Edinburgh EH1 1EW (map)

Opening times:
Monday to Friday: 10.00-20.00
Saturday: 10.00-17.00
Sunday: 14.00-17.00 (closed on Sunday 11 January)
Early closing on 24 and 31 December: 17.00
See also public holidays.

Admission free. No need to book.

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The People Behind the Pages: Making Books in Scotland

posted 3 Jan 2009, 19:31 by David Rintoul   [ updated 27 Jan 2009, 21:59 ]

This exhibition charts the history of the people who worked in the various industries involved in the creation of books and other printed material in Scotland.

It documents the working lives of individuals involved in book production; from authors, editors, papermakers and printers right through to booksellers, librarians and finally the Scottish readers who bought and borrowed the books that were produced.

The exhibition utilises material gathered over the last ten years by the Scottish Archive of Print and Publishing History Records (SAPPHIRE) and allows a unique glimpse into the lives of the ‘People Behind the Pages’.

The exhibition contains a number of exhibits, exhibition panels, film footage of the various stages of book production as well as a unique opportunity to hear the voices of individuals from all stages of production talking about their working lives.

Museum of Edinburgh, Huntly House, 142 Canongate, Royal Mile, Edinburgh EH8 8DD (map)

Running 'til 17th January 2009
Monday - Saturday 10am - 5pm
Admission Free

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