Saturday, 28 September 2013

Coupled Up

Hello everyone,

This weekend and next Monday offer you a last chance to see our lovely Autumn Exhibition before it makes way for the stunning Beth Robertson Fiddes Solo Exhibition.

One of the things that you'll find if you get here over the weekend, is a number of 'couple-related' paintings - quite an unusual turn of events for UG.
For Example:

'Burton' and 'Taylor', acrylic and collage on panel, by Colin Brown.


'Mr.' and 'Mrs.', oil on panel, by Dylan Lisle.

Maybe there's something in the air, or maybe it's just great, imaginative work by some great artists, but whichever, we are delighted to see such exceptional work in the gallery.  After all, who can resist the wonderfully sensitive and delicate charms of Joyce Gunn Cairns MBE's works, such as:


'Mutual Regard', oil and pencil on card.

Don't miss the chance to see all this talent yourselves - Monday is the deadline.

Thursday, 19 September 2013

The Height of Sophistication

Hello everyone,

In my last blog I promised we would take a closer look at something fishy in our Autumn exhibition.
Here it is:

'See no Fish, Hear no Fish, Catch no Fish', acrylic on canvas by James Newton Adams.

OK, so the fishermen might look a little comical with their big yellow gloves and rubbery red overalls, but James Newton Adams is making reference to the very serious issue of the declining fishing industry in Scotland. I love the glum expressions of their faces.

And there's more:

'Mallaig Fishermen' acrylic on canvas by James Newton Adams.

Now this is a painting I really wanted to take a closer look at!
I have often heard people refer to James as a 'niave' or 'primitive' painter. Yes there is a deliberate stylising of the figures, which in themselves appear childlike, and that of course is part of the appeal of James' work, but there's so much more to his work and this is a brilliant example of it.
There is nothing primitive about James' techniques as an artist: indeed every mark on his paintings is premeditated, skillfully rendered.

Just look at that fisherman's head!
In what seems to be an awkward and anatomically impossible face, the gruelling and relentless conditions which he has endured for many years are etched on his chiseled features.
It's so authentic you can practically smell him!
I also really enjoy the movement in this painting. The composition is clever, chopping up the canvas to mimic the choppy seas on which it's all 'niavely' balanced.
It is a buoyant and brilliant painting.

Come back soon to catch more marvels of the Autumn Exhibition :)

Monday, 16 September 2013

It's In your DNA

Hello everyone

We are particularly excited to have new work by Sophie McKay Knight on exhibition just now.
You can see why:

'DNA', acrylic and screenprint on canvas, by Sophie McKay Knight.

And my personal favourite:

'The Equation', mixed media on canvas, by Sophie McKay Knight.

A closer look reveals these paintings are not just pretty faces: just under the skin you can see the figures' DNA, their very make up, as Sophie McKay Knight says:

My work has always been based on the human figure. I am inspired by the things that make up a whole person, and what/where their sense of self comes from. This means I incorporate many things into my paintings - I 'collect' images of people from everywhere; often remembering a scene I have witnessed, sometimes responding to a fictional or historical character. I am interested in storytelling, everyday magic, memory and reflections.
As well as depicting the outside of the body, I have also become very interested in what happens inside the body & mind - the idea that genes and DNA partly make up who we are and where we have come from. I recently secured funding from Fife Contemporary Art & Craft to pursue a project called 'Human Self' and to create a new body of work surrounding these issues. I will essentially be exploring the nature/nurture debate through my work, focusing on local children and their families' thoughts on the concept of 'inheritance'.
SMK September 2013.

Looking at these figures I can't help but thinking the girls look a little lost, possible in need of some love and comfort.  All the more reason, then, for us to be thrilled that young 'Maya' here will be going to a loving home all the way over in Dubai:

'Maya', acrylic on canvas, by Sophie McKay Knight.

Have a great weekend all and hurry back to take a closer look at something a bit fishy in the exhibition.

Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Little Nipper

The first spring-loaded mouse trap was invented by William C. Hooker of Abingdon, Illinois, who received US patent 528671 for his design in 1894. James Henry Atkinson, a British inventor who in 1897 invented a prototype called the "Little Nipper", probably had seen the Hooker trap in the shops or in advertisements and used it as the basis of his model. It is a simple device with a heavily spring-loaded bar and a trip to release it. The design is such that the mouse's neck or spinal cord will be broken, or its ribs or skull crushed, by the force of the bar. 
Simple, brutal, but effective.

'Three Blind Mice' oil on panel by Dylan Lisle.

Three blind mice, three blind mice,
See how they run, see how they run,
They all ran after the farmer's wife,
Who cut off their tails with a carving knife,
Did you ever see such a thing in your life
As three blind mice?

Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Here Comes Autumn!

Hello everyone,

It might be a bit more Indian Summer than a typical Autumn, but hey, who's complaining?

All the more reason to get out and about and enjoy the fine weather!

Join us for a glass of something lovely and enjoy some cracking artworks:


Meet Joyce Gunn Cairns' 'Hello Dolly' painting. It's just a bit special :)

See you soon.....