Press releases 2013
A major exhibition of stunning American Impressionist paintings, an ambitious survey of 25 years of contemporary art in Scotland and a fascinating look at the sport of golf in art are among the highlights of the National Galleries of Scotland’s exhibition programme for 2014, which is announced today. Other key moments in the calendar include the opening of a landmark exhibition of watercolours and drawings by the great nineteenth-century critic and artist John Ruskin; the first exhibition to be devoted to two forgotten stars of mid-twentieth century British painting, the ‘Two Roberts’; and the hanging of Titian’s great mythological paintings Diana and Actaeon and Diana and Callisto in a display which unites them with a third masterpiece from the same series, The Death of Actaeon, on loan from the National Gallery in London. Titian and the Golden Age of Venetian Painting, which opens at the Scottish National Gallery in March will draw on the Gallery’s exceptionally rich collection of sixteenth-century Venetian paintings, drawings and prints to showcase and place in context these three world-renowned canvases.
Also opening in March, the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2013 will be shown at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery for the first time. The exhibition brings together the cream of recent portrait photography from around the world, highlighting 60 outstanding entries selected from the 5,000 images submitted to the judges of the prestigious £12,000 prize last year.
American Impressionism, which opens at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art on 19 July, will explore the impact of French Impressionism on American artists working in France and in the US in the period between 1880 and 1900, bringing together some 80 paintings by major international artists such as James McNeill Whistler, John Singer Sargent and Mary Cassatt. A collaboration between the musée des impressionnismes in Giverny, the Terra Foundation for American Art, the National Galleries of Scotland and the Museo Thyssen-Bornemisza in Madrid, the exhibition runs until 19 October, and will have its only UK showing in Edinburgh.
The National Galleries’ contribution to GENERATION, the nationwide celebration of contemporary art in Scotland which will take in more than 60 venues in 2014, will be shown at both the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the Scottish National Gallery on The Mound, from June until October. More than 30 artists will be represented in this hugely ambitious exhibition – the first to be shown across the two sites - and works made at key moments in the last quarter-century will be shown in parallel with new commissions by both established and promising younger artists. Further details of the GENERATION programme will be announced next year.
This major project will have a high profile during international events like the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup and fittingly The Art of Golf,an exploration of thedepiction of golf in art from the seventeenth century to the present day, will be on show at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in summer 2014. At its heart will be the most celebrated golfing painting in the world, Charles Lees’s nineteenth-century masterpiece The Golfers, but it will also feature around 60 other works which beautifully illustrate the emergence of the sport, particularly in Scotland.
The little-known artworks of John Ruskin, the famous aesthete, art critic and champion of Turner will also be on show at the Portrait Gallery next summer. Ruskin’s watercolours and drawings express his sense of exhilaration as he observed landscape and nature, buildings and artifacts, and his extraordinary skill as a draughtsman, so long overlooked, will be revealed in this landmark exhibition. A collaboration with the National Gallery in Ottowa, the exhibition’s only showing outside Canadawill be at the SNPG.
To mark the centenary of the beginning of World War I, the SNPG will also be showing Remembering the Great War, from August 2014 to July 2015. The display will focus on individuals - including Dr Elsie Inglis, who took a team of Scottish nurses to Serbia and Harry Lauder, who entertained troops at the Front - and how they were affected by the war.
The year will end at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art with the first exhibition to trace the twin careers of Robert MacBryde and Robert Colquhoun, otherwise known as the The Two Roberts, who burned brightly in the post-war London art-world, enjoyed a string of successful exhibitions and whose work was bought by the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Following their subsequent lapse into obscurity and early deaths in the 1960s, this exhibition will be a long-overdue re-examination of their work.
Sir John Leighton, Director-General, National Galleries of Scotland said: “In recent years, NGS has offered a dynamic and varied exhibition programme which has attracted national and international acclaim. Next year, as the attention of the world turns to Scotland there are many opportunities to showcase the best of our art and culture. This is why we have conceived what I believe to be a truly exceptional programme, ranging from a survey of contemporary art in Scotland to surprising thematic shows such as the Art of Golf. It is an amazing offer and one which we hope will attract wide audiences at home and from abroad.”
For further information and images please contac the National Galleries of Scotland's press office on: 0131 624 6325 / 6247 / 6314 / 6332
THE SCOTTISH COLOURIST SERIES: J. D. FERGUSSON
7 December 2013 – 15 June 2014
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art (Modern Two)
73 Belford Road, Edinburgh
Telephone: 0131 624 6200 | Admission £7 / £5
A partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland and The Fergusson Gallery, Perth & Kinross Council
The first major retrospective in forty years to showcase the work of J.D. Fergusson opens this weekend, Saturday 7 December. Bringing together well over 100 paintings, sculptures and works on paper by the Scottish Colourist, the exhibition will celebrate the importance of one of the UK’s greatest twentieth-century artists. The outstanding features of the exhibition include examples from the series of extraordinary nudes Fergusson painted in Paris in 1910, two series of landscapes reunited for the first time in almost 100 years, and a significant display of his remarkable sculpture.
This exhibition, featuring works from public and private collections from throughout the UK, is the third and final in a series devoted to the Scottish Colourists, following the hugely successful shows focussing on F.C.B. Cadell and S.J. Peploe.
J.D. Fergusson (1874 – 1961) has the most international reputation and was the longest-lived of the group, which also included G. L. Hunter. His career spanned the birth of modern art in Paris before World War One, to re-vitalising the arts scene in Glasgow after the outbreak of World War Two. Fergusson is the only Colourist to have made sculpture and to have been involved with the performing arts, through his partner the dance pioneer Margaret Morris.
An artist of passion and sensuality, Fergusson is best known for his depictions of women. Paintings of his partners are amongst his most celebrated; these include The White Dress: Portrait of Jean, 1904, a bravura life-size image of Edwardian femininity featuring Jean Maconochie, and Le Manteau Chinois, 1909, a dazzling depiction of female self-possession showing the American artist Anne Estelle Rice. Morris and her pupils provided Fergusson with an endless source of inspiration, resulting in works such as the idyllic Summer 1914, of 1934.
Born in Leith near Edinburgh, Fergusson was essentially self-taught. By 1902 he had his first studio in the Scottish capital and became a familiar figure sketching in the city, as can be seen in Bank of Scotland from Princes Street Gardens, early 1900s. In about 1900, Fergusson met Peploe and from 1904 they spent the summers painting together in France, resulting in works such as Grey Day, Paris-Plage, 1906.
Fergusson’s first solo exhibition was held in London in 1905. He moved to Paris in 1907 where, more than any of his Scottish contemporaries, he assimilated and developed the latest advances in French painting by artists such as Henri Matisse and André Derain. Fergusson’s work changed dramatically, as can be seen in the boldly coloured and designed Hortensia, 1907, and the striking and complex La Bête violette, 1910. A daring series of nudes, including Rhythm and Les Eus, of between 1910 and 1913, are amongst the most original paintings in British art of the period.
In 1913, Fergusson met Morris in Paris; they began a personal and professional relationship which lasted until his death. On the outbreak of World War One, Fergusson moved to London, where Morris was based. Through the Margaret Morris Club, which she ran alongside her dance school and theatre in Chelsea, Fergusson immediately came into contact with the London avant-garde.
Few works by Fergusson survive from the war years. In July 1918, he was granted permission by the Admiralty ‘to go to Portsmouth to gather impressions for painting a picture’. He spent several weeks there sketching and the resultant series of paintings, including Damaged Destroyer and Portsmouth Docks, show Fergusson experimenting with Vorticism. As a result, they are as distinct in style as they are in subject matter within his oeuvre. These works will be seen together in this exhibition for the first time. In addition, an important series of landscapes which Fergusson painted following a motoring tour of the Scottish Highlands in 1922, including A Puff of Smoke near Milngavie, will be shown together for the first time in 90 years.
Fergusson made his first sculpture in Paris in 1908; his last is thought to date from c.1955. This important aspect of his oeuvre is little-known. A special feature of the exhibition will be a display of fifteen sculptures, made in wood, stone, bronze and plaster, including the seminal Eastre of 1924, enigmatic Standing Female Nude and voluptuous Dancing Nude: Effulgence of c.1920.
The 1920s was perhaps the most successful decade of Fergusson’s career. The end of the war meant he and Morris could once again visit France, as symbolised by the joyous Christmas Time in the South of France of 1922, and later in Bathers, Noon, 1937. Fergusson had numerous solo exhibitions, including in Edinburgh, Glasgow, New York and Chicago, and his work was included in important group shows in London and Paris.
In 1929 Fergusson moved back to Paris, but World War Two forced him to leave France for a second time. In 1939, he and Morris settled in Glasgow, which he believed was the most Celtic city in Scotland. ‘Fergus’ and ‘Meg’, as the couple were affectionately known, played a vital part in the renaissance of the arts in the city, including as founder members of the exhibiting and discussions groups the New Art Club in 1940 and the New Scottish Group in 1942. Fergusson developed a distinct late style, which reached its climax in the majestic Danu, Mother of the Gods, 1952. Continued visits to France throughout the 1950s resulted in pictures of beauty and poise, such as Wisteria, Villa Florentine, Golfe-Juan of 1957.
Fergusson died in Glasgow on 30 January 1961. Morris made a huge effort to secure his reputation, establishing, in 1963, the J. D. Fergusson Art Foundation, to look after the works and archival material which she inherited. These were presented to Perth & Kinross Council, who opened The Fergusson Gallery in 1992.
Director of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Simon Groom, commented: ‘This is the first major retrospective exhibition of the work of J. D. Fergusson to be mounted by the National Galleries of Scotland. We are delighted that, just over fifty years since his death, the international significance of this major Scottish artist is being recognised in a captivating finale to the highly popular Scottish Colourist Series.’
The exhibition is a partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh and The Fergusson Gallery, Perth & Kinross Council. Provost of Perth and Kinross Liz Grant, said: ‘J. D. Fergusson’s links with Perthshire are well-known and we are proud to care for an extensive collection of his art and archival material that reflects the breadth of his artistic expression and his fascinating life. I am delighted that we are collaborating with the National Galleries of Scotland on this important retrospective of Fergusson’s work.’
The exhibition is kindly sponsored by Dickson Minto WS, who have shown great generosity in supporting the entire Scottish Colourist Series at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art.
A lavishly-illustrated publication based on new research accompanies the exhibition.
For further information and images please contact the National Galleries of Scotland's press office on 0131 624 6325 / 6314 / 6247
NOTES TO EDITORS
The Scottish Colourist Series of exhibitions:
F.C.B. Cadell - 22 October 2011 – 18 March 2012, with partial tour to The McManus: Dundee’s Museum and Art Gallery
S.J. Peploe - 3 November 2012 – 23 June 2013, with partial tour to Aberdeen Art Gallery
J.D. Fergusson - 7 December 2013 – 15 June 2014, with partial tour to Pallant House Gallery, Chichester (5 July – 19 October 2014, see www.pallant.org.uk)
J.D. Fergusson: Picture of a Celt - The Fergusson Gallery, Perth
7 December 2013 – 15 June 2014 | www.pkc.gov.uk
Doughty Hanson Assistant Curator - The Scottish Colourist Series has been curated by Alice Strang, Senior Curator at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. She has been assisted by Rachel Smith, Doughty Hanson Assistant Curator. This post was made possible by two generous grants from Doughty Hanson & Co., the British private equity firm co-founded by Nigel Doughty, who kindly agreed to this support before his untimely death last year.
The Scottish Colourist Series: J.D. Fergusson – A Seminar - A one-day seminar examining the life and career of J. D. Fergusson, will be held at the Hawthornden Lecture Theatre at the Royal Scottish Academy Building on 20 March 2014. Call 0131 624 6560 for further details.
The J.D. Fergusson Arts Award - Administered by Perth & Kinross Council, the award alternates yearly between an Exhibition Award and a Travel Award, see www.pkc.gov.uk/museums. The 2013 Exhibition Award was won by Debbie Lawson.
The National Galleries of Scotland has acquired The Chalk Cutting, 1898, a major work by the influential Scottish artist Arthur Melville (1855-1904), with generous support from the Art Fund and Patrons of the National Galleries of Scotland. The painting was acquired for £72,000 with a grant of £25,000 from the Art Fund.
The Chalk Cutting greatly enhances the holdings within the national collection of paintings associated with the Glasgow School, an important group of artists working in Scotland in the late 19th century. Melville is increasingly recognised as one of the most consistently innovative and significant Scottish painters of this period
Michael Clarke, Director of the Scottish National Gallery, commented: “One of the key aims of the National Galleries is to acquire the very best of Scottish art and to show these works in a wider international context. This remarkable painting by Melville demonstrates how Scottish artists at the end of the 19th century could be just as innovative and ambitious as their counterparts elsewhere in Europe. Following on from recent acquisitions by Guthrie and E.A. Walton, the new Melville further strengthens the presentation of the Glasgow Boys and adds a dramatic new note to the displays.”
Stephen Deuchar, Director of the Art Fund, said: “The Art Fund trustees were struck by the fresh modernity of Melville’s luminous painting The Chalk Cutting. He is one of the most significant Scottish painters of the later nineteenth century, and this quietly radical work will find an ideal home at the Scottish National Gallery. If the reception of its temporary display in May is anything to go by, it will prove an extremely popular and important acquisition.”
Susan Rice, Chairman of the Patrons of the National Galleries of Scotland, added: “The invaluable support of the Patrons has enabled the Galleries to take on a number of important projects and acquisitions over the years. On behalf of the Patrons, I would like to say how honoured we are that we have been able to play a major part, along with the Art Fund, in securing this particularly significant and striking Scottish work of art for the nation.”
Painted in London in 1898 during the artist’s last decade, this stunning composition reveals Melville to have been the most forward-looking and inventive of all the painters associated with the Glasgow School. By the 1890s he was highly regarded for the technical brilliance of his watercolours, some characterised by a truly exceptional modernity. Although executed on an exhibition-scale canvas, the picture was not shown publicly in the artist’s lifetime, perhaps because of this extreme experimentalism.
The sheer visual power of The Chalk Cutting suggests that it was painted in response to immediate experience rather than from recollection. However, the actual location of Melville’s subject is still unknown. As in many of his late watercolours, his approach to landscape tends towards near-abstraction, revelling in pure colour. Carefully calculated touches subtly add definition – the sign-post on the cliff edge and the tiny human figures at the head of the rail track. But Melville’s essential motif is the dazzling light reflected from the exposed white chalk face, suffusing the whole composition.
Born in Angus and raised in East Lothian, Melville studied art in Edinburgh, finally settling in London after a period in France. The Chalk Cutting remained in the artist’s own collection until his death in 1904. Sold by order of his executors, in Edinburgh, in 1922, it remained in a Scottish collection until 1982. It was bought by the well-known Irish entrepreneur Peter Langan, in 1983, for his celebrated Brasserie in London’s Mayfairandwas part of the celebrated collection of artworks associated with Langan’s Brasserie sold at Christie’s in December 2012.
Since 1999 the Scottish National Gallery has purchased several outstanding works by leading artists connected with the Glasgow School, complementing the great collection held by Glasgow Museums. In 2007, Melville’s pioneering early work, A Cabbage Garden, 1877 (currently on display next to The Chalk Cutting), and E.A. Walton’s A Herd Boy, 1886, were acquired. More recently, in 2012, there was the ground-breaking joint purchase, with Glasgow Museums, of In the Orchard byMelville’s close friend, Sir James Guthrie. These followed the important acquisitions in 1999 of: E.A. Walton’s A Daydream, 1885; David Gauld’s Saint Agnes, 1889-90; and Margaret Helen Sowerby (known as Helen Sowerby), 1882, one of Guthrie’s earliest known portrait commissions.
A complementary display of some of Melville’s most stunning watercolours of Northern Africa and the Middle East is on show at the Scottish National Gallery, allowing visitors to appreciate the wealth of works by Melville now present in the national collection.
Notes to Editors
The Art Fund
The Art Fund is the national fundraising charity for art, helping museums to buy and show great art for everyone. Over the past 5 years we’ve given over £26m to help museums and galleries acquire works of art for their collections and placed hundreds of gifts and bequests, from ancient sculpture and treasure hoards to Old Master paintings and contemporary commissions, with 25% of grants going towards works by living artists. We also help museums share their collections with wider audiences through supporting a range of tours and exhibitions, including the national tour of the ARTIST ROOMS collection and the 2013-2014 tours of Grayson Perry’s tapestries The Vanity of Small Differences and Jeremy Deller’s English Magic, the British Council commission for the 2013 Venice Biennale. Our support for museums extends to the Art Guide app – the comprehensive guide to seeing art across the UK, promoting a network of over 650 museums and galleries throughout the country, and the £100,000 Art Fund Prize for Museum of the Year – an annual celebration of the best of UK museums, won in 2013 by William Morris Gallery in Walthamstow. We are independently funded, the majority of our income coming from over 100,000 members who, through the National Art Pass, enjoy free entry to over 220 museums, galleries and historic houses across the UK, as well as 50% off entry to major exhibitions.
The Patrons of the National Galleries of Scotland
The support of the Patrons is vital for the work of the National Galleries of Scotland; their generosity has enabled us to acquire over 1,200 individual items, including paintings, drawings, prints, sculpture and photography. Additionally, the Patrons provide valuable help with funding for special exhibitions and major projects, such as the 2004 Playfair Project at the Scottish National gallery and the recent transformation of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in 2011.
ARTIST ROOMS LAUNCHES THE FIRST GALLERY/UNIVERSITY MOOC IN UK
Sixth year of ARTIST ROOMS on Tour - Scottish highlights to include four new venues in the Highlands and Islands and the work of three artists new to the collection. 16 New venues across the UK
It is announced today that an ARTIST ROOMS Warhol MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) has been developed as part of the ARTIST ROOMS research partnership between the University of Edinburgh, Tate, and the National Galleries of Scotland. This is the first art MOOC dedicated to a single artist and the first such course to be developed in a gallery/university partnership in the UK. The MOOC will introduce participants to the life and work of Andy Warhol, exploring his international standing, thematic concerns, creative innovations and examine his relationship to major artistic movements of the 20th century. The course will be delivered collaboratively by staff based in the School of Design at Edinburgh College of Art and the School of Education at the University of Edinburgh.
MOOCs are free online courses delivered from prestigious universities. They are open to all and encourage large-scale interactive participation. The development of this MOOC affords the opportunity for ARTIST ROOMS to do important early work in establishing the impact of MOOCs on gallery learning.
The National Galleries of Scotland and Tate are also delighted to announce plans for the sixth ARTIST ROOMS Tour in 2014. New exhibitions and displays will go on show at 16 venues across the UK. The Tour will include the Isle of Wight, Exeter and Shetland, adding twelve new venues to ARTIST ROOMS on Tour. By the end of 2014, ARTIST ROOMS will have been shown in 66 museums and galleries nationwide and 132 displays and exhibitions will have opened since 2009. ARTIST ROOMS have been seen by 29 million people to date. The tour is supported by the National Lottery through Arts Council England and through the continued support of the Art Fund and, in Scotland, support from the National Lottery through Creative Scotland.
Of the six tour venues in Scotland, four will be taking part for the first time (Bonhoga Gallery, Shetland; Shetland Museum and Archive; Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre, North Uist; and Caithness Horizons in Thurso). The tour will also feature three artists whose work is a new or recent addition to the collection, being shown in an ARTIST ROOMS display for the first time. The celebrated Turner-Prize-winner Douglas Gordon will be shown at Caithness Horizons in Thurso; Gracefield Arts Centre in Dumfries will show the work of the American minimalist artist Dan Flavin; and a series of powerful photographs by Don McCullin will be shown simultaneously at the two venues on Shetland. The Douglas Gordon exhibition is also part of Generation, a celebration of 25 years of contemporary art in Scotland, which will be shown at more than 60 venues across the country in 2014.
Across the UK, ARTIST ROOMS exhibitions and displays will also be seen in Bideford, Birmingham, Denbighshire, Dumfries, Exeter, the Isle of Wight, Kilmarnock, Leicester, Middlesbrough, Northumberland, Powys and Preston.
The total number of artists now included in the ARTIST ROOMS collection is 38, six having been added since the project began in 2009: Louise Bourgeois, Martin Creed, Dan Flavin, Douglas Gordon, Don McCullin and August Sander.
The continued and powerful impact of ARTIST ROOMS through the associate institutions across the country has been clearly demonstrated over the past year. Venues have seen record numbers at ARTIST ROOMS displays. Highlights have included the first exhibition of the work of Andy Warhol in Northern Ireland at The MAC in Belfast; Bruce Nauman at York St Mary’s, York’s contemporary art space; Robert Mapplethorpe in Galashiels attracting 50% more visitors in the first month of display; and Martin Creed at Ferens Art Gallery in Hull, where the artist gave a performance. The New Art Gallery Walsall saw 235,938 people visit the Damien Hirst exhibition, an 18% increase in visitor figures on the previous year.
The full 2014 ARTIST ROOMS tour is as follows:
Harris Museum & Art Gallery, Preston Bruce Nauman 15 February - 24 May 2014
Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery, Exeter Gilbert & George 22 March - 22 June 2014
Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre, North Uist Vija Celmins 29 March - 28 June 2014
Bodelwyddan Castle and Park, Denbighshire Francesca Woodman 5 April - 13 July 2014
Tate Modern Alex Katz 7 April 2014 – 1 March 2015
Tate Modern Robert Mapplethorpe 5 May 2014 – 1 March 2015
Caithness Horizons Museum, Thurso Douglas Gordon 10 May - 11 October 2014
Quay Arts, Isle of Wight Martin Creed 13 June – 20 September 2014
mac Birmingham Robert Therrien 21 June - 7 September 2014
mima Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art Louise Bourgeois 18 July - 12 October 2014
Gracefield Art Centre, Dumfries Dan Flavin 16 August - 15 November 2014
Dick Institute, Kilmarnock Gerhard Richter 6 September - 6 December 2014
New Walk Museum & Art Gallery, Leicester Georg Baselitz 20 September 2014 - 15 January 2015
Burton Art Gallery and Museum, Bideford, North Devon Richard Long 4 October 2014 - 10 January 2015
Woodhorn Museum, Northumberland Lawrence Weiner 25 October 2014 - 12 April 2015
Oriel Davies, Powys Francesca Woodman 15 November 2014 - 25 February 2015
Bonhoga Gallery, Shetland Shetland Museum & Archives Don McCullin 29 November 2014 – 22 February 2015
ARTIST ROOMS is owned jointly by Tate and the National Galleries of Scotland and was established through The d’Offay Donation in 2008, with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the Art Fund and the Scottish and British Governments.
For further information
Ruth Findlay, Corporate Communications Manager, Tate Tel: 020 7887 4940 Email: [email protected]
Michael Gormley, Senior Press Officer, National Galleries of Scotland Tel: 0131 624 6247 Email: m[email protected]
Maddy Adeane, Press Relations Manager at the Art Fund Tel: 020 72254804 Email: [email protected]
For images for this announcement please visit the dropbox at the following link:
or contact [email protected]
To find out more about the ARTIST ROOMS MOOC, visit https://www.coursera.org/course/warhol
To find out more information about ARTIST ROOMS On Tour please visit www.artfund.org/artistrooms. To see the full ARTIST ROOMS collection please visit www.tate.org.uk/artistrooms and www.nationalgalleries.org/artistrooms
Notes to editors
ARTIST ROOMS exhibitions and displays are from the collection assembled by Anthony d’Offay. ARTIST ROOMS is owned jointly by Tate and National Galleries of Scotland and was established through The d’Offay Donation in 2008, with the assistance of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the Art Fund and the Scottish and British Governments. ARTIST ROOMS On Tour has been devised to enable this collection to reach and inspire new audiences across the country, particularly young people.
Arts Council England
Arts Council England champions, develops and invests in artistic and cultural experiences that enrich people’s lives. We support a range of activities across the arts, museums and libraries – from theatre to digital art, reading to dance, music to literature, and crafts to collections. Great art and culture inspires us, brings us together and teaches us about ourselves and the world around us. In short, it makes life better. Between 2010 and 2015, we will invest £1.9 billion of public money from government and an estimated £1.1 billion from the National Lottery to help create these experiences for as many people as possible across the country. www.artscouncil.org.uk
The Art Fund
The Art Fund is the national fundraising charity for art, helping museums to buy and show great art for everyone. Over the past 5 years we’ve given over £26m to help museums and galleries acquire works of art for their collections and placed hundreds of gifts and bequests, from ancient sculpture and treasure hoards to Old Master paintings and contemporary commissions. We awarded £1 million towards the original acquisition of the ARTIST ROOMS collection and have been instrumental in ARTIST ROOMS on Tour since its inception in 2009. We are independently funded, the majority of our income coming from over 100,000 members who, through the National Art Pass, enjoy free entry to over 220 museums, galleries and historic houses across the UK, as well as 50% off entry to major exhibitions.
Find out more about the Art Fund and the National Art Pass at www.artfund.org.
Please contact Madeline Adeane, the Press Relations Manager, on 020 7225 4804 or [email protected]
Creative Scotland is the national organisation that funds and supports the development of Scotland’s arts, screen and creative industries. Creative Scotland has four objectives: to develop and sustain a thriving environment for the arts, screen and creative industries; to support excellence in artistic and creative practice; to improve access to and participation in, arts and creative activity; and to deliver our services efficiently and effectively. In 2013/14 we will distribute over £100m in funding provided by the Scottish Government and the National Lottery. For further information on Creative Scotland please visit www.creativescotland.com. Follow us @creativescots and www.facebook.com/CreativeScotland
NATIONAL GALLERIES OF SCOTLAND ACQUIRES TWO MAJOR SCULPTURES BY DAME BARBARA HEPWORTH.
*PHOTOCALL 12.11.13 11.30am – enter by the East Gate*
Two bronze sculptures, Ascending Form (Gloria) and Rock Form (Porthcurno), by the British sculptor Dame Barbara Hepworth have been acquired for the nation by the National Galleries of Scotland through the Government’s Acceptance in Lieu (AIL) scheme.
The works, currently on show at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh, will remain in place in the Gardens through a reciprocal arrangement with the National Galleries.
Commenting on the acquisition, Director of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Simon Groom said:
“We are delighted to have secured these two great sculptures by Barbara Hepworth for the collection. They have been on show at the Royal Botanic Gardens in Edinburgh – the first home of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art – from 1960 to 1984 – for nearly forty years. For all that time they were on loan from the artist's estate; it is wonderful that they can remain here indefinitely. We are indebted to the Acceptance in Lieu procedure, and to the artist's descendants, for making this possible.”
Barbara Hepworth was born in Wakefield in 1903 and became one of the most celebrated sculptors of the twentieth century. Her earlier works were carved in wood and marble, but in the mid-1950s she turned to bronze. Ascending Form (Gloria) 1958, one of her earliest large-scale bronzes, features two diamond shapes, the larger one sitting on top of the smaller one, suggesting growth and upward movement. It has been interpreted as the shape of hands in prayer, a reading reinforced by Hepworth’s renewed spirituality during this period of her life, following the death of her son Paul in 1953. Another cast of Ascending Form (Gloria) is placed at the entrance to the cemetery where Hepworth is buried in St Ives, Cornwall. Visitors to the Botanic Gardens will be familiar with the sculpture which is sited prominently, near to the east entrance from Inverleith Row.
Rock Form (Porthcurno) 1964, by contrast, reflects Hepworth’s on-going interest in the relationship between landscape and human experience. The artist took her inspiration from the rock forms near Porthcurno, a hamlet close to Land’s End, which Hepworth described ‘with its queer caves pierced by the sea.’
The two bronzes have been on permanent display in Edinburgh for nearly forty years. They were placed on loan to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in 1976, when the Gallery was sited at Inverleith House in the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh. The loans were made by Hepworth’s Estate, following the artist’s death in 1975. When the Gallery moved to new, larger premises in Belford Road in the west of Edinburgh in 1984, the bronzes remained in the grounds at the Royal Botanic Garden.
For further information please contact the National Galleries of Scotland’s Press Office on 0131 624 6325/6247/6314/6332 or [email protected].
Notes to Editors
Acceptance in Lieu
- The Acceptance in Lieu (AIL) scheme allows those who have an inheritance tax bill to gift significant items to the nation and satisfy more tax than by selling items on the open market. This also allows museums and galleries to increase their collections at no cost to them while the donor gets full market value. AIL is a reserved matter but “executive devolution” arrangements are in place to enable Scottish Ministers to deal with cases in which there is a Scottish Interest.
- The AIL Scheme brings up to 10 items/collections to the Scottish collections annually. A recent example is a Byzantine hardstone chalcedony bowl and gold and enamelled holder worth £3m which was allocated to National Museums Scotland.
FIRST PROGRAMME DETAILS REVEALED FOR GENERATION
TWENTY-FIVE YEARS OF CONTEMPORARY ART IN SCOTLAND TO BE CELEBRATED IN OVER 60 GALLERIES AND VENUES ACROSS THE NATION
The first programme details for a landmark series of exhibitions celebrating 25 years of contemporary art in Scotland have been revealed today (Thursday 7th November). GENERATION will bring an ambitious and extensive programme of works of art by over 100 artists to over 60 galleries, exhibition spaces and venues the length and breadth of the nation between March – November 2014, with the majority of exhibitions taking place over the summer of 2014,as part of the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme.
GENERATION has been in the making since 2011. The programme will continue to grow in the coming months, and featured artists announced today include Charles Avery, Sara Barker, Karla Black, Christine Borland, Martin Boyce, Roddy Buchanan, Steven Campbell, Duncan Campbell, Katy Dove, Graham Fagen, Moyna Flannigan, Douglas Gordon, Ilana Halperin, Charlie Hammond, Iain Hetherington, Louise Hopkins, Callum Innes, Jim Lambie, Lorna Macintyre, Sophie Macpherson, Alan Michael, Rosalind Nashashibi, Toby Paterson, Ciara Phillips, Alex Pollard, Charlotte Prodger, Mary Redmond, John Shankie, David Shrigley, Ross Sinclair, Simon Starling, Clare Stephenson, Corin Sworn, Joanne Tatham and Tom O’Sullivan, Cara Tolmie, Sue Tompkins, Hayley Tompkins, Zoë Walker & Neil Bromwich, Alison Watt, Cathy Wilkes, Richard Wright and many more.
GENERATION is being delivered through a partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland and Glasgow Life, and is supported by Creative Scotland. These partners have engaged with a range of associate partners, venues and arts organisations across the country to ensure a truly national reach for the project. The programme aims to shine a spotlight on the past 25 years - a period which has seen Scotland develop an international reputation as a distinguished centre for contemporary art, produce a disproportionate amount of award-winning artists, host a number of ground-breaking exhibitions and foster an infrastructure which has helped allow contemporary art to flourish.
GENERATION is part of the Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme, which is a partnership between the Glasgow 2014 Organising Committee, Glasgow Life and Creative Scotland. Generation has ambitious goals to raise the profile of contemporary art in Scotland and to increase access and participation. It is being produced with the assistance and expertise of partners including VisitScotland and EventScotland, British Council Scotland, Museums Galleries Scotland, Education Scotland, Young Scot, Children in Scotland and the BBC.
THE SCALE, AMBITION AND GEOGRAPHICAL REACH OF GENERATION
The scale, ambition and geographicalreach of GENERATION make it the first project of its kind. It will be one of the most ambitious celebrations of contemporary art ever held by a single nation, and aims to reach and build new audiences for contemporary art. The venues involved in the project have programmed their own exhibitions, working with Associate Curator Katrina Brown and a specially convened Curatorial Board comprised of representatives of the partner organisations, to ensure that all the exhibitions share the aspirations of the project.
One central aim of the project is to engage with a new generation and bring to life the possibilities that contemporary visual art presents to young people between the ages of 12 and 25 with an extensive education and outreach programme specifically devised to fuel their imagination and increase their participation. The programme for children and young people is still in development and more details will be announced over the coming months.
KEY MOMENTS AND WORKS CELEBRATED
The wide-ranging programme will highlight the cultural significance of key moments and works from the past 25 years, featuring seminal pieces from landmark exhibitions and bringing significant works to new audiences in galleries and exhibition spaces across the nation.
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art will host a two-part exhibition across the Scottish National Gallery and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art One, which will bring together historically significant works from the past 25 years and show them in parallel with new work by both established and emerging artists. Steven Campbell’s landmark On Form & Fiction exhibition, a memorable part of the Third Eye Centre’s programme for Glasgow 1990 which saw the artist cover all the available wall space with a remarkable range of work, will be recreated in the Scottish National Gallery as part of GENERATION. Also being shown in Edinburgh for the first time at Scottish National Gallery will be Martin Boyce’s 2002 Tramway show Our Love is Like the Flowers, the Rain, the Sea and the Hours.
Among the four solo shows being staged at Glasgow’s Gallery of Modern Art are two celebrated works which have been shown to great acclaim in Edinburgh, but never before in Glasgow: Douglas Gordon’s Pretty Much Every Film and Video Work from about 1992 until Now (a comprehensive collection of Gordon’s work in film and video, including some of his most celebrated installations such as Play Dead; Real Time, Feature Film, 24 Hour Psycho and 30 Seconds Text) and Nathan Coley’s The Lamp of Sacrifice, 286 Places of Worship – a scale model in cardboard of every ‘Place of Worship’ listed in the 2004 edition of the Edinburgh Yellow Pages telephone directory.
Collective Gallery will mark the 20 year anniversary of Ross Sinclair’s Real Lifeprojects, whilst The Fruitmarket Gallery will trace the development of Jim Lambie’s practice, from the sculptures with which he first came to public attention in the early 1990s, to his signature floor work ZOBOP (1999), to Ultra Low through to new work, specially made for the solo exhibition.
Elsewhere in the programme, Paisley Art Gallery & Museum will revisit Information – the significantexhibition staged in 1989 in the Museum by a group of then-emerging artists from Glasgow School of Art including Roddy Buchanan and Jackie Donachie – with a show of work by current Glasgow School of Art MLitt students, who have been invited to respond to the theme of “Information” within the particular context of Paisley Museum.
NEW WORKS AND COMMISSIONS
Although there is an emphasis on existing works, GENERATION will highlight the continued relevance of visual art at local, national and international levels through a number of new works and commissions. Artists exhibiting new works include Claire Barclay, Alex Dordoy, Ciara Philips, Karla Black, Dalziel + Scullion, Alex Frost who is creating a new work for Cove Park’s 50-acre rural site overlooking Loch Long, Mary Redmond, Lorna Macintyre, Sara Barker and Moyna Flannigan.
In line with its international reputation for commissioning, producing and presenting contemporary art, Tramway will present a programme of new works by an array of leading artists including Sophie MacPherson, Charlotte Prodger, Clare Stephenson, Cara Tolmie, Sue Tompkins, Cathy Wilkes, Alan Michael, Joanne Tatham and Tom O’Sullivan, Charlie Hammond, Iain Hetherington and Alex Pollard.
SPANNING THE LENGTH AND BREADTH OF THE COUNTRY
GENERATION will see exhibitions taking place the length and breadth of the country. Participating venues include The Pier Arts Centre in Orkney, which will present a major exhibition of work by Zoë Walker & Neil Bromwich spanning more than 15 years of their practice. Caithness Horizons in Thurso will show the work of Douglas Gordon for the first time in the north of Scotland, whilst a specially curated exhibition of work by Toby Paterson will tour to venues in Kirkcaldy, Inverness, Peebles and Dumfries. Another touring exhibition will be the Travelling Gallery, which will see the work of a group of artists at varying stages of their career and working in a range of media (including Hanna Tuulikki, Craig Coulthard and Laura Aldridge) shown throughout Scotland.
Dalziel + Scullion’s installation Tumadh : Immersionwill be staged in two parts in An Lanntair in Stornoway and Dovecot Studios in Edinburgh, whilst venues East Ayrshire, South Ayrshire and Dumfries and Galloway will present works by some of Scotland’s major contributors to the development of contemporary art in the last 25 years as part of the South By South West (SXSW) partnership.
THE INTERNATIONALISM OF GENERATION
The GENERATION programme also features an array of works produced in Scotland over the past 25 years - many of which have won prestigious international prizes, or have been shown at renowned museums and galleries or festivals across the world - but which have never been shown before in Scotland, offering audiences the opportunity to see them for the very first time.
The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and the Scottish National Gallery will show Simon Starling’s Burn Time and Graham Fagen’s Peek-A-Jobby and a sculptural installation by Christine Borland, all of which have never been seen in Scotland before.
The Common Guild will host three consecutive solo exhibitions by Corin Sworn, Duncan Campbell and Hayley Tompkins, the artists presented by The Common Guild exhibition Scotland + Venice 2013, a Collateral Event of the 55th International Art Exhibition – la Biennale di Venezia, which received international acclaim.
ARTIST-LED INITIATIVES AND SUPPORTIVE INFRASTRUCTURE
GENERATION will highlight the work of artists and the distinctive infrastructure in place in Scotland that has supported the development of contemporary art over the past 25 years. Support from Creative Scotland (and formerly the Scottish Arts Council) has enabled a range of initiatives and facilities to thrive – from grass-roots and artist run initiatives such as Transmission Gallery (a model which has been adapted the world over) through to production facilities and artists’ studios to major museums and art centres. In the spirit of such artist-led initiatives, Cooper Gallery in Dundee will host Studio Jamming: Artists’ Collaborations in Scotland – the first discursive survey to foreground the grassroots character of artists’ collaboration. Dundee Contemporary Arts will present Continue Without Losing Consciousness - three solo exhibitions by Rob Churm, Raydale Dower and Tony Swain. They’ll reference the artists’ collaboration for the 2010 Glasgow International Festival - Le Drapeau Noir - which was a temporary artists café held at The Old Hairdressers, and will develop their original concept into three new projects built around a core installation and featuring events, concerts and intervention.
Patricia Fleming Projects will celebrate the DIY and lo-fi approach instrumental to the rise of artist-led activity in Glasgow with DISCORDIA, which will feature performance, live music and limited edition t-shirts by twenty contemporary artists involved with Patricia Fleming Projects from the early 90s to the present.
City Art Centre’s Urban/Suburban exhibition is based on work acquired through the National Collecting Scheme for Scotland, the Scottish Arts Council initiative founded to support the sustained development of collections of contemporary visual arts by Scotland’s museums and galleries. Featured artists include Chad McCail and Carol Rhodes.
Sir John Leighton, Director-General of the National Galleries of Scotland, said: “There is an amazing story to tell about art in Scotland over the past 25 years and we believe that we have found a very compelling way to tell it with what surely must be one of the most ambitious programmes of exhibitions ever mounted by a single country. With over 60 free shows across the entire country, this is a massive opportunity for both residents and visitors to experience world-class contemporary art from Scotland.”
Councillor Archie Graham, the Chair of Glasgow Life, said: “This is a groundbreaking partnership between Glasgow Life and the National Galleries of Scotland, which will allow us to share our outstanding collections, resources and knowledge. GENERATION presents a unique opportunity to galvanize a new audience for the artists and artworks that have propelled both Glasgow and Scotland’s contemporary art onto a global stage.
“Now is the time to tell the story of how Glasgow and Scotland has nurtured such incredible talent and to ensure that communities from Orkney to the Borders can share in what promises to be an amazing show.”
Janet Archer, Chief Executive of Creative Scotland said: "We are delighted to be working in partnership with the National Galleries of Scotland, Glasgow Life and venues across Scotland to deliver GENERATION, which celebrates 25 years of contemporary art in Scotland. It provides a unique opportunity to reach more people in more places with the art and ideas of our time. We are particularly excited to be engaging with children and young people. GENERATION features work made in their lifetime. We hope experiencing these extraordinary exhibitions will inspire and fuel their imagination as they journey through their own lives."
Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: ”The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme offers a wealth of opportunities for people right across Scotland to get involved in a number of truly inspiring cultural activities, connecting people and communities to the Games, and encouraging them to celebrate culture in new and surprising ways.
“As part of the Cultural Programme, GENERATION is an exciting opportunity to enjoy, celebrate, and learn about our nation’s rich recent history of achievement and excellence in contemporary art.
“The sheer scale and ambition of this project is testament to the large number of talented artists that Scotland has produced over the last quarter of a century.
“I’m pleased that along with once-in-a-lifetime exhibitions there is also a strong focus on engaging and inspiring our young people. I’m positive that the creative legacy of GENERATION will be felt not only across the country but down the years for a long time to come.”
For further information on GENERATION visit: www.nationalgalleries.org/aboutus/special-projects/generation and use#GENERATION on Twitter.
For further information, please contact:
Gillian McCormack | Material_UK | [email protected] | 07792 423 012
Claire Snedden | Material_UK | [email protected] | 07789 511 854
Notes to editors
1. GENERATION will feature work by artists who came to attention working in Scotland between 1989 and 2014 and include work by artists born in Scotland, as well artists of other nationalities who studied and live or lived in Scotland.
2. A specially convened Curatorial Board comprised of representatives of the partner organisations along with an Associate Curator, Katrina Brown, has formed the overall shape of the project, its specific manifestation across the partner organisations’ venues and the extension of the programme nation-wide to include many other galleries and organisations across Scotland.
GENERATION, Curatorial Board:
Simon Groom, Director, SNGMA
Sarah Munro, Head of Arts, Glasgow Life
Amanda Catto, Portfolio Manager, Creative Scotland
Katrina Brown, Associate Curator for GENERATION
Keith Hartley, Chief Curator & Deputy Director, SNGMA
Victoria Hollows, Contemporary Arts & Museums Manager, GoMA
Lucy Askew, Senior Curator, SNGMA
Working with Jenny Crowe, Project Manager for GENERATION
3. This is the first ever such national project in Scotland.
Previous exhibitions in Scotland that have offered a view of the contemporary art of their time have included:
‘The Vigorous Imagination: New Scottish Art’
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, 1987
‘New Art in Scotland’
‘Here + Now: Scottish Art 1990-2001’
Dundee Contemporary Arts
McManus Galleries and Generator Projects, Dundee
Aberdeen Art Gallery and Peacock Printmakers, Aberdeen
4. Creative Scotland is the national development agency for the arts, screen and creative industries. www.creativescotland.com
5. The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme launched in July 2013 and is a national celebration with two strands: Culture 2014 and Festival 2014.
Culture 2014 is an unprecedented national programme of extraordinary new work by world-leading and emerging Scottish and international artists. It will be intimate and epic, intense and life-affirming. Stories will be told of individual lives and communities, special places and moments in time. These come together in one programme, creating a journey throughout Scotland that frames and celebrates the Games.
Festival 2014 is a massive Games-time celebration in Glasgow running alongside the sporting action, transforming the city from 19 July to 3 August with an invigorating mix of entertainment, culture and enjoyment filling the streets, spaces and stages of Glasgow.
The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme is an opportunity for the whole of Scotland to get involved in the Games. From grassroots celebrations to large scale projects: the aim is for every community in Glasgow and Scotland to celebrate and benefit from this historic event.
The Glasgow 2014 Cultural Programme is a partnership between the Glasgow 2014 Organising Committee, Glasgow Life and Creative Scotland.
A rare, early portrait of a Scottish folk musician, the celebrated eighteenth-century fiddler Patie (or Peter) Birnie, has recently been acquired by the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh and is on public display for the first time.
This charming portrait by the Scot William Aikman (1682-1731), who portrayed many of the leading political and literary figures of his day, was probably painted in the period between 1715 and 1720.
A memorable and welcome addition to the Gallery’s collection, it is a significant example of a portrait by a prominent Scottish artist in which the sitter, who is clearly identified, comes from the lower ranks of society, rather than the ruling élite. It complements other renowned portraits of musicians in the collection, such Sir Henry Raeburn’s portrayal of the fiddler Niel Gow, painted in 1787, and also provides a compelling contrast with the Gallery’s other portraits by Aikman, which are primarily of aristocratic subjects.
In the striking and unusual composition the famous musician is shown laughing, and is identified not only by the fiddle he holds, but also by a painted inscription which describes him as ‘The Facetious Peter Birnie / Fidler in Kinghorn’. Although the word ‘facetious’ is generally used in a derogatory sense today, in the eighteenth century it meant ‘gay; chearful [sic]; lively; merry; witty.’ (Samuel Johnson’s Dictionary)
Most of our information about Birnie comes from Allan Ramsay the Elder’s Elegy, published, presumably shortly after Birnie’s death, in 1721, which states that Birnie was present at the Battle of Bothwell Bridge in 1679. The Elegy was later used by the Rev. James Granger in his Biographical History (1769):
‘Patie Birnie resided at Kinghorn, on the sea coast, about nine miles north of Edinburgh, where he supported himself by his consummate impudence. Not by honest labour, but by intruding upon every person who came to the public house… He then fell into the utmost familiarity… his… exploits [involved] showing a very particular comicalness in his looks and gestures; laughing and groaning at the same time. He played, sung, and broke in with some queer tale twice or thrice e’er he got through the tune; and his beard was no small addition to the diversion.’
In addition to performing in such a memorable manner, Birnie is reputed to be among the earliest composers of strathspeys (a type of dance in 4/4 time). His fame was such that a number of engravings after Aikman’s painting were made, an example of which is in the Gallery’s collection. The painting was formerly in the collection of the Earls of Rothes, at Leslie House, Fife (where it was recorded in 1839) and was acquired by the Gallery from the London dealer Philip Mould
Speaking of the acquisition, Christopher Baker, Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, said: ‘This is an especially attractive and endearing addition to our eighteenth-century collection: Birnie was a man renowned for his music and vivacious performances and Aikman commemorated him in a wonderfully appropriate, informal and engaging manner.’
The National Galleries of Scotland is delighted to announce a remarkable acquisition which brings together two great artists from very different eras. Portrait of Laura Moubray, a fine early work by the English landscape painter John Constable (1776-1837), has entered the National Collection from the estate of the artist Lucian Freud (1922-2011) through the Government’s Acceptance in Lieu (AIL) scheme.
Portrait of Laura Moubray is a fascinating addition to the Scottish National Gallery. Constable is believed to have painted only around 100 portraits during his early career, of which about 50 survive. The painting complements the Galleries’ existing holdings of the artist’s work: the major landscape The Vale of Dedham (1828) and the small, vigorously executed sketch On the Stour (1830).
Just as Constable’s landscape paintings demonstrate a close focus on place and the changing face of nature, so his studies of people encourage an intimate view of an individual and something of their relationship with the artist. It was doubtless these qualities which attracted the celebrated painter Lucian Freud, who was a great admirer of Constable’s portraits: ‘I’ve always thought that it was completely loopy for people to go on about portrait painters, English portrait painters, and not to have Constable among them!’
Freud was renowned as one of the most important and influential artists of the twentieth century. In 2008, his work Benefits Supervisor Sleeping (1995) fetched the highest price paid for a painting by a living artist. He is represented in the collection of the National Galleries of Scotland by a number of key works, which include Two Men (1988), an emotive portrait of two figures in repose.
The Scottish National Gallery was one of Freud’s favourite galleries and provides a fitting context for Portrait of Laura Moubray through its fine collection of English portraits; these include major works by Thomas Gainsborough, Sir Joshua Reynolds and Sir Thomas Lawrence. There is also a Scottish connection to the picture through the sitter’s husband, Robert Moubray of Cockairny and Otterston (1774-1848), and Deputy Lieutenant of Fifeshire.
Commenting on the acquisition, Director of the Scottish National Gallery, Michael Clarke, said, ‘We are absolutely thrilled to receive this charming and intriguing picture. Lucian Freud had a very discerning eye and now our public will also be able to appreciate the qualities Freud found in Constable’s rare and unusual portraits.’
Notes to Editors
Acceptance in Lieu
- The Acceptance in Lieu (AIL) scheme allows those who have an inheritance tax bill to gift significant items to the nation and satisfy more tax than by selling items on the open market. This also allows museums and galleries to increase their collections at no cost to them while the donor gets full market value. AIL is a reserved matter but “executive devolution” arrangements are in place to enable Scottish Ministers to deal with cases in which there is a Scottish Interest.
- The AIL Scheme brings up to 10 items/collections to the Scottish collections annually. A recent example is a Byzantine hardstone chalcedony bowl and gold and enamelled holder worth £3m which was allocated to National Museums Scotland.
VIVIANE SASSEN: IN AND OUT OF FASHION
Exhibition organised by Huis Marseille Museum, Amsterdam
19 October 2013 – 2 February 2014
Scottish National Portrait Gallery
New international photography exhibition Viviane Sassen: In and Out of Fashion comes to the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Dutch photographerVivianeSassen, one of the most exciting names in contemporary photography, opens the only UK exhibition of her highly distinctive work in Edinburgh this weekend.
The exhibition in the Mapplethorpe Photography Gallery opens with an immersive installation which places the viewer at the centre of the work with a giant mirror reflecting projections around them, and the gallery. The second half of the exhibition showcases Sassen’s fashion photography for fashion houses Carven, Stella McCartney and Miu Miu and series of photographs which are grouped thematically. These include Roxanne, a visual journal of photographs in which the viewer is offered a glimpse of the creative process through the relationship between photographer and muse, and Foreplay, (pictured above,) in which the artist explores the abstract moments before a fashion shoot begins with captivating results.
Annie Lyden, International Photography Curator at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery said:
“We are very excited to showcase the work of Viviane Sassen at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery this winter. Sassen creates both fashion and fine art photography, but there is no hard distinction between the two when it comes to her vision. Her innovative explorations of the human form, coupled with her bold use of colour create photographs that are equally dynamic and engaging. Visitors to the exhibition will be able to view Sassen’s ground-breaking work through a series of projected images, framed photographs and selections from the artist’s personal archive that come together to create a bold and exciting gallery space”
The artist Viviane Sassen added:
“I'm extremely proud to show my work at the Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh, which has such a rich history... The atmosphere is so special!
“Holding my exhibition within the walls of this gallery is very exciting, the clash of cultures so to speak. Fashion pictures deal very much with contemporary popular culture and have a kind of disposable quality – which is very much in the nature of fashion – opposed to the tremendous historical setting of this building and the collection. This juxtaposition helps us to see how contemporary culture is imbedded in the past, as we create new images of our time."
In and Out of Fashion brings together around 35-40 photographic prints and vitrine displays, brimming with notes, plans and magazines, selected by the artist, as well as the specially designed installation, in which 200 images are projected onto a mirror at the beginning of the exhibition.
This exhibition is part of a continuing programme of exhibitions at the Portrait Gallery, including last year’s stunning Jitka Hanzlova retrospective, which aim to capture the style and range of current international photography and share it with audiences in Edinburgh.
In and Out of Fashion, the book charting the last 12 years of Sassen’s career has just been published by Prestel Ltd.
Alexander Stoddart: Making History
12 October 2013 – 28 September 2014
Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh EH2 1JD | Admission free
PRESS VIEW & PHOTO CALL - Thursday 10 October, 11.30am - 1pm
Alexander Stoddart: Making History documents the fascinating process behind the creation of History, a new monumental sculpture recently installed on the exterior of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Made by Alexander Stoddart, who was appointed Sculptor in Ordinary to The Queen in Scotland in 2008, the sculpture is a representation of ‘History’, or Clio, one of the nine muses, the daughters of Zeus, who in Greek mythology inspired learning and the arts.
The new sculpture adorns the apex of the entrance to the Gallery and replaces the original figure of ‘History’ by the sculptor William Birnie Rhind (1853 – 1933) which weathered beyond repair and was later removed.
Stoddart’s new figure is cast in aluminium, stands almost two metres tall and weighs 85 kg. The exhibition explores the technical process employed in creating History through the display of a rich and varied collection of the artist’s preparatory drawings and sculptural studies. These are accompanied by photographs taken in Stoddart’s studio at the University of the West of Scotland, Paisley Campus, and at the Black Isle Bronze foundry in Nairn where the sculpture was cast.
Alexander Stoddart is perhaps best known for his neo-classical sculptures of key proponents of the Scottish Enlightenment which grace some of Edinburgh’s most iconic civic spaces; these include representations of the philosophers David Hume and Adam Smith on The Royal Mile and the physicist James Clerk Maxwell on George Street, a bronze study for which is currently on display at the Portrait Gallery in the Pioneers of Science exhibition.
Commenting on the new exhibition, Director of Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Christopher Baker said, “This wonderful new sculpture is sited serenely above the façade of the Gallery, both making a statement and being entirely sympathetic to its context – one of Scotland’s greatest nineteenth-century buildings. It is the first enrichment of this sort which has been installed on the Gallery since the Victorian period. The related exhibition will illustrate in a compelling manner the extraordinary commitment that Alexander Stoddart made to this high profile commission.”
Alexander Stoddart, said, “This tremendous commission, to complete the sculpture scheme of the Portrait Gallery, gave me the opportunity to pay homage to some of the great late-19th century artists whom I have admired since my earliest days as a sculptor. It has been a weighty honour to have been allowed to work in collaboration with these long-dead men, and a pleasure working with the people at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery who are all alive and thriving in one of the greatest National-Romantic buildings in the British Isles. I should like to thank them all, and to thank my studio assistants in Paisley, and the foundry-workers in Nairn, who worked so diligently with me to achieve this end; a simple little figure, standing where she ought, with the clouds behind her."
Press release 02.10.13
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art
12 October 2013 – 1 March 2014
The internationally renowned Scottish artist John Bellany, who died in August at the age of 71, gifted one of his finest late paintings to the National Galleries of Scotland. The gift was made in recognition of what Bellany called one of the “truly great moments” of his career, the exhibition John Bellany: A Passion for Life which opened at the Scottish National Gallery last year. The artist wrote to the Director and curators at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in spring 2013 and expressed a wish to give his 1992 painting Prague Easter to the collection.
The painting will be on show as part of a new exhibition of works acquired over the last three years, which opens at the Gallery later this month.
Keith Hartley, Chief Curator and Deputy to the Director at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, explained why the work is an exciting addition to the National Collection:
“The work Prague Easter is a significant painting from Bellany’s career. This is a major work from a time when Bellany had recovered from his liver transplant operation and had been given a new lease of life. He was sponsored by the British Council to travel and paint in the newly democratised countries of central Europe – Hungary, Czechoslovakia and East Germany (as the two last countries were then called). This painting shows the famous Charles Bridge that spans the River Vltava in Prague. One of the bridge’s Baroque sculptures depicts the Crucifixion. The crowds thronging the bridge look as if they were actual eye-witnesses of the historical event. But, as the title tells us, it is Easter – a reminder that Christ rose from the dead on that day. Bellany, too, was given a new life by his operation.”
National Galleries of Scotland Director-General John Leighton added:
“This is an extraordinarily generous gift of a truly major work by the late artist; it would be hard to imagine a more appropriate image to commemorate one of Scotland’s most important and best-loved artists. Prague Easter is a monumental picture that places Bellany firmly in a great European tradition of Expressionist art, evoking masters such as Munch or Kokoschka, yet conveying a vision that is highly personal and distinctive. It is an unforgettable piece that will be admired and loved by a grateful public in Scotland.”
The Nation // Live
5 October 2013 – 4 May 2014
Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 1 Queen Street
Edinburgh, EH2 1JD | Admission free
The Nation // Live is the culmination of the first major community outreach project for the Scottish National Portrait Gallery since its spectacular three-year refurbishment was completed in 2011. Arranged across five themes - Work, Union, Faith, Civil War and Roots - the exhibition links local heroes, characters and events to the Portrait Gallery collection, and features a range of media including video, music, performance and sculpture.
The themes explore crucial turning points in Scotland’s history and are linked to appropriate regional settings. Encounters between past and present, national and local, have been explored in creative collaborations between artists and communities in Skye, Inverness, Dumfries, Clydebank and other areas in the central belt. The resulting artworks display how contemporary Scots think and feel about their past, present and future.
The projects, which have been organised by the National Galleries of Scotland Education Department, are unified in a contemporary video artwork by the filmmaker Daniel Warren which forms the centre-piece of the exhibition. Included in the video is footage from Clydebank documenting a community-wide, cross-generational discussion, which formed the basis for a voice drama created by writer Martin O’Connor to address the life and legacy of the late trade-union campaigner Jimmy Reid. Also featured is SkyeDance, a group of young dancers from Skye who choreographed their own personal conceptions of faith at sites on the island associated with the Christian mission of Saint Columba.
Music forms a core part of the exhibition through the work of celebrated Scottish folk/electronic musician Drew Wright (aka Wounded Knee) who has created a powerful set of songs fusing Scotland’s folk music heritage and traditional styles from around the world. Wright worked alongside recent migrants to Scotland to create and perform a collection of songs which reflect the experiences of people who have left their homelands to make new lives in this country. The songs are being released on a vinyl LP and a live performance will mark the opening of the exhibition.
Events from the late seventeenth century are explored through a film and photographs created by a group of Dumfriesshire teenagers in response to the bloody ‘Killing Times’ of the Covenanting era. Moving forward in time, the legacy of the 1707 Act of Union is represented by a display of large bronze medals newly forged by contemporary highlanders, including soldiers and students, as representations of their present-day identities.
Commenting on the exhibition, Senior Outreach Officer for the National Galleries of Scotland, Robin Baillie said, ‘The Nation//Live offered ordinary Scots the opportunity to create a “living history”, to assess how the past has made them what they are and to address how this might shape their future. We looked at five moments that made the nation and asked: where has this legacy left Scotland today? We hope we have given a platform to those communities and individuals who don’t normally get to shape the national debate.’
Watch the Nation // Live trailer: http://www.nationalgalleries.org/whatson/exhibitions/the-nation-live/the-nation-live-trailer
For further information and images, please contact the National Galleries of Scotland Press Office on 0131 624 6332 / 247 / 325 or email [email protected].
VIVIANE SASSEN: IN AND OUT OF FASHION
Exhibition organised by Huis Marseille Museum, Amsterdam
19 October 2013 – 2 February 2014
Scottish National Portrait Gallery
One of the most exciting names in contemporary photography will bring her first retrospective exhibition to Edinburgh this autumn. In and Out of Fashion highlights the work of the hugely acclaimed Dutch photographer Viviane Sassen, and will have its only UK showing at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery from 19 October 2013 until 2 February 2014.This exhibition is part of a continuing programme of exhibitions at the Portrait Gallery, including last year’s stunning Jitka Hanzlova retrospective, which aim to capture the style and range of current international photography and share it with audiences in Edinburgh.
Sassen’s highly distinctive work embraces both fine art and fashion. In 2007 she was awarded the Dutch equivalent of the Turner Prize, the Prix de Rome, for her colourful and dreamlike photographs of Africa (where she has worked regularly since 2002), while her campaigns for fashion houses Carven, Stella McCartney, Miu Miu and M-Missoni, and editorial commissions for magazines such as Purple, i-D, Dazed & Confused and Pop have transformed fashion photography in the last decade.
In and Out of Fashion is a survey of the best of Sassen’s work in fashion from 1995 to 2012, bringing together around 50 photographic prints and vitrine displays, brimming with notes, plans and magazines, selected by the artist, as well as a specially designed installation, in which 200 images are projected onto a mirror in the centre of the exhibition.
The first and only showing of this retrospective in the UK will showcase Sassen’s dynamic and daring approach to photography, producing images that explore shape, form and colour in innovative ways. Often obscuring the model’s face and depicting the body as a sculptural form that is explored through abstraction, her photographs are bold and idiosyncratic.
Sassen initially studied fashion design and worked as a model, before studying photography from 1992 to 1997. In both areas of her work Sassen has developed a highly personal signature style: her imagery is challenging, flamboyant, formally inventive and occasionally surreal. In contrast to her art work, however, Sassen’s fashion photography is made in collaboration, working with a large team of stylists, models and make-up artists. For her, fashion photography is like a ‘laboratory’, a domain in which she can work spontaneously and intuitively, assisted by a professional team, to perform an experiment.
Working initially for small, underground style magazines, Sassen found herself liberated from the conventions of more corporate fashion photography, and has continued to explore a very playful approach to the medium. The results are visually astonishing: Sassen’s images are characterised by an expressive use of bold, ultra-bright colour, and her models often ‘melt together’ in contorted, intertwined poses, which make the photographs intriguing, mysterious and difficult to pin down.
In and Out of Fashion will feature the series Nudes: A Journey, which includes selections of early work, made with Emmeline de Mooij, for independent magazines such as Purple and Dazed & Confused, in which the photographs resemble a record of performance art. For the Roxane series, Sassen created 36 portraits of Roxane Danset, the French fashion stylist, which explore a range of styles from the erotic to the surreal and are indicative of the collaborative nature of her work.
Alongside key images from Sassen’s recent work for The New York Times Magazine, Self Service, Acne, Levi’s, Diesel and Louis Vuitton will be another major body of work, Foreplay, in which the artist explores, in a series of almost abstract images, the moments before a fashion shoot begins, offering a fascinating insight into the spontaneous, creative way in which her vision emerges.
In and Out of Fashion is Sassen's first retrospective and comes to the Portrait Gallery from Huis Marseille Museum, Amsterdam. A recently published overview of Sassen’s fashion work, also titled In and Out of Fashion,with essays by Nanda van den Berg and Charlotte Cotton, accompanies the exhibition, published by Prestel.
In and Out of Fashionis shown in the Robert Mapplethorpe Gallery in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Named after the renowned American photographer, the Gallery is supported by a very generous donation from The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. This is being used over three years to produce innovative displays, exhibitions and research. Recent exhibitions have included Edith Tudor-Hart: In the Shadow of Tyranny, Jitka Hanzlová and Man Ray Portraits. The Gallery is the first purpose-built photography space of its kind in a major museum in Scotland.
Allan Ramsay at 300
19 October 2013 – 4 February 2014
Scottish National Gallery, The Mound, Edinburgh, EH2 2EL
Telephone: 0131 624 6200 | Admission free
Press Photo Opportunity
A photo call is taking place at the Gallery on Thursday 17 October from 11.30 – 12.30 pm.
Celebrating the 300th anniversary of the birth of Allan Ramsay, one of Scotland’s most important artists, this exhibition of around 30 beautiful drawings from the Scottish National Gallery’s unrivalled holdings will include some of his earliest known works. The son of the distinguished poet of the same name, Allan Ramsay (1713 – 1784) became internationally renowned for his outstanding portraits of royalty and Enlightenment figures, several of which hang prominently in both the Scottish National Gallery and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.
Born in Edinburgh, Ramsay received his first artistic training at the city’s Academy of St Luke. His father then raised funds to send him to Rome, where he studied at the French Academy and drew alongside emergent artists such as Pompeo Batoni. On his return to the UK, Ramsay based himself in London but kept a studio in Edinburgh. Through the influence of John Stewart, 3rd Earl of Bute, Ramsay was introduced to the Prince of Wales and on the latter’s accession to the throne as King George III, became the king’s painter – the highest honour to which a British artist could aspire.
Ramsay produced hundreds of drawings across his career, working largely in red or black chalks, heightened with white, on differing shades and colours of paper. Whether highly finished works in their own right, sketches made in training or preparatory studies for larger compositions, they demonstrate the incredible drawing and modeling skills which underpin the artist’s painted portraits and offer a glimpse of personal aspects of his life. The National Galleries of Scotland’s collection of drawings by Ramsay represents the largest holding of the artist's graphic oeuvre worldwide.
Commenting on the exhibition, Director of the Scottish National Gallery, Michael Clarke, said ‘Ramsay was one of the most cultured and able of all Scotland’s great artists, as this selection of his drawings and watercolours reveals. Because he was primarily known as a portrait painter, he is sometimes not given the recognition he richly deserves. His refined style drew on British and Continental traditions (particularly those of France and Italy) and he was an artist of European stature.’
One exhibition highlight will be a series of drawings which relate to Ramsay’s painting Queen Charlotte with her two Eldest Sons (c. 1764-9), now in the Royal Collection at Buckingham Palace. An idealised study of the head and shoulders of Prince George, dating from 1764-65, in black chalk heightened with white on blue paper, is presented alongside two impressive compositional studies. Perhaps more than the resulting painting, the drawings combine the grand trappings of late Baroque Court portraiture with the tender portrayal of an intimate family group. Another royal subject, which shows Ramsay’s extraordinary use of line and precision, is a detailed study for the crown that appears resting on the table in Ramsay's portrait King George III in Coronation Robes (1763), a version of which can be seen at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.
Several drawings going on display were made during visits Ramsay made to Italy from 1736 - 38, 1754 - 57 and 1775 - 77. It was during the second visit that the artist developed the elegant drawing-style which characterizes the preparatory chalk studies he made following his return to London. While in Italy Ramsay also made drawings of the countryside around Rome; a number of studies of the Colosseum; practiced drawing from life, and made many studies after the Old Masters.
A sketchbook dating from c. 1730 - 1731 is one of the earliest surviving examples of the artist’s work. It contains drawings from his early studies at the Academy of St Luke. Other very early works on display include a self-portrait and a portrait of his father, both made when Ramsay was only twenty years old. These will be complemented by a simple, intimate study of the artist’s daughter Amelia Ramsay (later Lady Campbell) made in 1776 when she was twenty-one. Created three years after an accident in which Ramsay permanently damaged his painting arm, this drawing was composed on the Isle of Ischia off the coast of Naples, which Ramsay visited so that he could treat his arm in the famous curative baths.
Also on display will be a beautiful red chalk drawing of a lady's hand holding a Rose, made as a study for what is possibly Ramsay’s most famous painting, a portrait of his second wife, Margaret Lindsay (currently displayed at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery) which shows the exceptional delicacy of Ramsay’s mature style.
The National Galleries of Scotland is delighted to announce that Anne Lyden, formerly Associate Curator of Photographs at the J. Paul Getty Museum, Los Angeles, has been appointed the new International Photography Curator at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh.
During her tenure at the Getty, Ms. Lyden was responsible for the vast collection of 19th century British material and many of her projects have been based on these holdings, including the exhibitions Light in the Darkness: The Photographs of Hill and Adamson (1999), The Old Order and the New: P.H. Emerson and Photography, 1885-1895 (2007), and A Record of Emotion: The Photographs of Frederick H. Evans (2010). She has also curated major exhibitions of photographs from the 20th and 21stcenturies, such as Three Roads Taken: The Photographs of Paul Strand (2005), and Narrative Interventions in Photography (2011), featuring the work of three contemporary artists: Eileen Cowin, Simryn Gill, and Carrie Mae Weems.
Ms. Lyden has written extensively on photography. Her notable publications include: Railroad Vision: Photography, Travel, and Perception (2003) and The Photographs of Frederick H. Evans (2010). Ms. Lyden is a graduate of the University of Glasgow, where she studied the History of Art, and the University of Leicester, where she completed her post-graduate degree in Museum Studies. In her 18 years at the Getty, she engaged in collaborations with institutions and photographers from around the world. In joining the National Galleries of Scotland, Ms. Lyden will bring her expertise and enthusiasm for photography, while continuing to foster international connections.
In a statement Ms. Lyden said, “I am delighted to join the National Galleries of Scotland and to begin working with such a rich and engaging collection of photographs. The strength of the holdings, from the early history of photography to contemporary, together with the representation of Scottish art and that from around the world, excites me.”
Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery Christopher Baker said, “Photography forms a vital and high profile part of the collections and exhibitions at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery and we are delighted that we are to be joined by such an experienced and knowledgeable curator as Anne Lyden, who will play a key role in furthering our ambitions in this area.”
Most recently, Ms. Lyden has been preparing the exhibition A Royal Passion: Queen Victoria and Photography, which will open in Los Angeles in February 2014. She begins her role at the National Galleries of Scotland today, Monday 2 September 2013.
JOHN BYRNE PORTRAITS
Scottish National Portrait Gallery
A new Scottish National Portrait Gallery exhibition set for summer 2014, will present a broad range of portraiture from across John Byrne’s career. The exhibition is the first on this scale to honour the Scottish painter’s work and contribution to Scottish art, at the Portrait Gallery on Queen Street, Edinburgh. Works from the gallery’s collection to be prominently featured include Tilda Swinton, b. 1960, Pastel on paper, Robbie Coltrane b.1950, Oil on board, and the much loved self-portrait of John Byrne b.1940, Oil on block-board which currently hangs in the Portrait Gallery café.
Christopher Baker, Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery said:
'We are delighted to be working closely with John Byrne on this exciting project for next summer which will bring together around 50 key works, from drawings to large-scale paintings. John is a great friend of the Portrait Gallery, and we are sure this show will be a huge draw for both fans of John’s artwork, and those who know him in one of his many other artistic guises'
This week John Byrne joins us at the Portrait Gallery for a special In Conversationsessionwith AL Kennedy, as part of the National Galleries’ By Night series, and our first foray into live comedy events at the festival fringe. Byrne’s celebrated painting of Billy Connolly is one of the highlights of the current exhibition of Scotland’s comedy greats Tickling Jock, and the Paisley-born artist also provides the backdrop for the Portrait Gallery Comedy Café, where his self-portrait takes pride of place behind the stage.
John Byrne and AL Kennedy the Dundee-born writer, novelist and comic, will be chatting about their personal favourites among Scotland’s comedy greats – as well as discussing Byrne’s own work on his iconic portraits of figures such as Robbie Coltrane and Tilda Swinton in the Gallery’s world-famous collection.
Tickling Jock: By Night is at the Portrait Gallery on Wednesday 21 August (door open at 6.15 pm) with stand-up from the best of the Fest 2013, comedy tours of Tickling Jock led by The Stand regular Susan Morrison and a tribute to the legendary Chic Murray performed by Glasgow comedian Scott Agnew.
SUSAN CALMAN & FORBES MASSON, A.L KENNEDY & JOHN BYRNE HEADLINE FRINGE LINEUP FOR TWO SPECIAL PORTRAIT GALLERY BY NIGHT EVENTS Tickling Jock: By Night Wednesdays 7 & 21 August 18.30 – 20.30pm Scottish National Portrait Gallery Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2013 The Scottish National Portrait Gallery announces the line-up for two special events at the gallery during the Edinburgh Festival Fringe. The events, which turn the neo-gothic sandstone Edinburgh landmark into a comedy club, will have three separate performance spaces for each two-hour after-work event. The events have been inspired by the Scottish comedy greats exhibition, Tickling Jock, currently on show at the Portrait Gallery. Susan Calman and Forbes Masson are confirmed as the headline In Conversation With for Wednesday August 7. Calman, the Glasgow based comic known for regular appearances on BBC Radio 4’s The News Quiz and QI, is also appearing this year at the Stand Comedy Club with new solo show Always (A Work In Progress). Forbes Masson takes time out from his hectic West End theatre schedule for a one-off appearance at the 2013 Festival Fringe with the National Galleries. Masson, famed as one half of Victor & Barry with Alan Cumming, will be chatting with Susan Calman about the Scottish comedy greats that inspired him, and reminiscing about childhood visits to the theatre to see Rikki Fulton and Jack Milroy’s Francie & Josie. The In Conversation With will take place under the starry sky of our Great Hall after Des Clarke and Scott Agnew perform a special Francie & Josie tribute. This is a unique opportunity to see two Scottish performers at the top of their game chatting about their comedy icons. The Comedy Café will feature over an hour of stand-up from the best on the festival 2013 including ‘the best kept secret on the fringe’ John Robins, Stewart Lee’s alternative comedy pick and Scot David Kay, the fringe’s favourite Frenchman Marcel Lu Cont and Benny the Human Jukebox whose 90s pop megamix on the melodica has over 2million hits on youtube. Writer and comic AL Kennedy will join us on 21st August to talk about her Scottish comedy greats from Ivor Cutler to Billy Connolly, In Conversation With artist and playwrightJohn Byrne; expect a lively discourse and an entertaining half hour from the two great scots. In the Comedy Café, Edinburgh’s Jo Caulfield,introduces a line-up including Sally-Anne Hayward, Markus Birdman and Simon Munnery. Scott Agnew returns to By Night to perform as Chic Murray. On both nights in the Tickling Jock exhibition space Susan Morrison will be reprising parts of her Edinburgh History Festival comedy lecture Giggling Jock. More acts for both evenings will be announced in the lead up to the events on the National Galleries official twitter and facebook pages. Ends. Notes to editors. Tickets are available from edfringe.com from and from the information desk at the Scottish National Gallery on the Mound or by calling 0131 624 6560. The Scottish National Portrait Gallery reopened in December 2011 after a £17.6 million refurbishment and uses portraiture from the sixteenth century to contemporary practice to plot the history of Scottish achievement and life. Works by Sir Henry Raeburn and Allan Ramsay together with Alexander Nasmyth’s iconic portrait of Robert Burns sit alongside today’s Scottish greats. Recent exhibitions have included Leading Lights Portraits by KK Dundas which featured portraits of Royal Conservatoire graduates, including Alan Cumming, Greg McHugh and Ruby Wax, all of whom have performed at the Edinburgh festivals. Tickling Jock: By Night is part of the late night events series at the National Galleries of Scotland. For more information on the By Night events – go to nationalgalleries.org/bynight.
KEN CURRIE: NEW WORK 20 JULY 2013 – 22 SEPTEMBER 2013 SCOTTISH NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY, 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh EH2 1JD Admission free An exhibition of powerful new paintings by Ken Currie, one of Scotland’s most outstanding artists, goes on public view for the first time at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Widely admired for his intense and provocative work, Currie responds in his display to the idea of the portrait, its origins and purposes, and its continued significance. The exhibition features 11 paintings, all but one of which has been created for the Gallery’s exhibition. Born in Glasgow in 1960, Currie graduated from the city’s School of Art in the early 1980s. Associated with The New Glasgow Boys group, Currie was launched on to the Scottish Art scene by the landmark 1987 exhibition The Vigorous Imagination at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. While the group had no common agenda, its members shared a commitment to the creation of figurative art, and in doing so demonstrated that painting remained a powerful and relevant means of visual expression. Already represented in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery collection by his haunting painting Three Oncologists (2002) and searing self-portrait Unfamiliar Reflection (2006) (the latter of which is included in this exhibition), Currie has long been fascinated by portraiture. He does not consider himself to be a portrait painter, but his paintings have often engaged with the tradition and can be seen to carry traces of works by artists who have practised the form, from Old Masters such as Velásquez, Goya and David to modern painters, Munch, Magritte and Bacon. Currie’s recent engagement with portraiture is suggested by a recurring motif in several of the new works: the death mask. These objects can give a powerful impression of what a person looked like, yet their very existence is reliant on death. This duality is explored in the central painting of the new exhibition, Night Work, which invites the viewer to witness the making of a death mask by two potentially benign or sinister figures. Currie’s new work meditates on the idea that a portrait can only be a simulation of what a person once looked like at a particular time. In Imago, for example, a man is seen standing next to his portrait. The painting on the easel shows an apparently more vital version of the subject, whose features are now eroding. Another work, Bath House, presents a lone figure standing up to his waist in murky water, his head bent as if transfixed by the distorted reflection of his own appearance; this is a parody of the story of the mythical Narcissus, who was enamoured with his own beautiful reflection. Commenting on the exhibition Ken Currie said, 'I am delighted to be exhibiting at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, my first solo exhibition in Scotland in over ten years. Since completing my first commission for the Portrait Gallery in 2001, I have come to engage in a prolonged exploration of the nature of the painted portrait that has culminated in this new body of paintings, made specifically for the Gallery's contemporary space. The paintings will hopefully provide a compelling and thought-provoking dialogue with aspects of the Portrait Gallery's collection and point to the continuing relevance of painted portraits as deeply poignant human documents.' Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Christopher Baker, said, ‘We are delighted to host this exhibition during Edinburgh’s festival season and are most grateful to Ken Currie for his commitment to the project. His work prompts powerful responses as he deals with difficult themes in figurative paintings which are carefully considered and painstakingly executed. Three Oncologists, his triple portrait of eminent cancer specialists, has become something of an emblem for the Portrait Gallery. This new exhibition further develops his relationship with the Gallery and represents a rich and thoughtful response to its historic collection.' ENDS.
High-profile panel shortlists museums and artists in running for £60,000 Contemporary Art Society Annual Award The Contemporary Art Society is delighted to announce the shortlisted museums and their nominated artists in line to receive this year’s Contemporary Art Society Annual Award for Museums. These are: * Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology in partnership with the Pitt Rivers Museum and the Ruskin School of Drawing & Fine Art with artist Elizabeth Price * Birmingham Museums with artist Jess Flood-Paddock * The Hepworth Wakefield with artist Des Hughes * Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art with artist Lucy McKenzie Now in its fifth year, the prestigious £60,000 prize is one of the highest value contemporary art awards in the country, and is awarded to a UK museum to commission an artist of their choice to create a new work that will enrich their permanent collection. The award also provides support and exposure for the winning artist at a critical point in their career. The shortlisted museums with their nominated artists will now create a full proposal for their new commissions, to be considered by the 2013 judging panel. The judging panel for the 2013 award includes a mix of leading names in the field of contemporary art and comprises: Brian Griffiths (artist),Charlotte Higgins (Chief Arts Writer, The Guardian),Elizabeth Neilson (Director, Zabludowicz Collection), andKirsty Ogg (Curator, Whitechapel Gallery). The winners of the £60,000 prize will be announced in an award ceremony in London on 18 November 2013, in the presence of artists, curators, collectors and art world VIPs. The presenter of the award will be announced shortly; previous presenters have included Grayson Perry, Cornelia Parkerand Jeremy Deller. Sophia Bardsley, Deputy Director, Contemporary Art Society, said: “We are delighted to have received such a large volume of applications this year, and the quality of proposals has been exceptionally high. After some debate, the 2013 panel was eventually unanimous in their selection of this year’s stand-out shortlist. The museums will now begin to work with their nominated artists to better visualise their proposed commissions and the ways in which these commissions will enrich and enliven their collections, for the benefit of public audiences now and in the future. The Contemporary Art Society Annual Award is a lifeline to the winning museum to acquire an important new work that will put their contemporary collection more firmly on the contemporary art map – both regionally and across the UK – whilst the winning artist gains the opportunity to develop their work and ideas alongside a team of curators and museum professionals, which is often a new experience for them. The award offers the artist the chance to expand their practice to potentially take their work in a new direction.” Elizabeth Neilson, Director, Zabludowicz Collection, said: “It was a challenge to select four proposals when every one of the applications should be seen through to completion. This cannot be understood in terms of ‘winners’ and ‘losers’ but rather a process to select the right proposal for this award. I expect the next stage of selection to be even harder.” For all press enquiries, including press tickets to the 18 November award ceremony, contact: Jenny Prytherch, Communications Manager [email protected] +44 (0)20 7017 8412 ————————————————————————— Notes to Editors: 1. ABOUT CONTEMPORARY ART SOCIETY The Contemporary Art Society is a national charity that encourages an appreciation and understanding of contemporary art in the UK. With the help of our members and supporters we raise funds to purchase works by new artists which we give to museums and public galleries where they are enjoyed by a national audience; we broker significant and rare works of art by important artists of the twentieth century for public collections through our networks of patrons and private collectors; we establish relationships to commission artworks and promote contemporary art in public spaces; and we devise programmes of displays, artist talks and educational events. Since 1910 we have donated over 8,000 works to museums and public galleries – from Bacon, Freud, Hepworth and Moore in their day through to the influential artists of our own times – championing new talent, supporting curators, and encouraging philanthropy and collecting in the UK.www.contemporaryartsociety.org Current and forthcoming displays at Contemporary Art Society, 59 Central Street: David Hockney 5 JUNE – 16 AUGUST PROJECT 03: Data 5 JULY – 27 SEPTEMBER John Stezaker 4 SEPTEMBER – 4 OCTOBER Pop Flavours: The Eric & Jean Cass Gift 16 OCTOBER – 22 NOVEMBER Laure Prouvost 4 DECEMBER – 17 JANUARY 2. ABOUT CONTEMPORARY ART SOCIETY ANNUAL AWARD FOR MUSEUMS One of the highest value contemporary art prizes in the country, the Contemporary Art Society Annual Award for Museums supports a UK-based museum or public gallery to work with an artist of their choice to commission a new work that, once completed, will remain within the museum’s permanent collection. The £60,000 prize has a major impact on both the winning museum and their chosen artist: for the winning museum, the award allows the acquisition of an ambitious work of contemporary art of national importance, and for the winning artist (who may be showing widely nationally and internationally but whose work is not represented in collections in this country), the award is a stepping stone to greater visibility and provides access to national and international audiences. Applications are welcomed from museums that have not yet commissioned new work as well as from those with more experience. The award is open to all museums in the Contemporary Art Society’s Museums Membership network and artists anywhere in the world. Museums must be able to commit at least £5,000 towards the development of a publication or catalogue, and £1000 is made available to all short-listed museums to work up the detailed proposal including the artist’s time and contribution. Previous recipients of the award include: The Graves Art Gallery, Museums Sheffield (with artist Kateřina Šedá) in 2009; the Hepworth Wakefield and Wolverhampton Art Gallery (with Turner Prize nominated artist Luke Fowler) in 2010; Nottingham Castle Museum & Art Gallery (with artist Christina Mackie) in 2011; and last year’s winners, The Collection & Usher Gallery, Lincoln (with artist Oliver Laric). 3. ABOUT THE 2013 SHORTLIST Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology in partnership with the Pitt Rivers Museum and the Ruskin School of Drawing & Fine Art with artist Elizabeth Price Turner Prize winner Elizabeth Price is an artist who uses images, text and music to explore archives and collections. While her work is informed by mainstream cinema and experimental film, it is mostly concerned with the medium of digital video and its comparative ubiquity in today’s culture. Exploring the archives and collections of the university’s museums, focusing especially on the Ashmolean Museum and the Pitt Rivers Museums (The Pitt Rivers cares for Oxford’s holdings of anthropology and world archaeology), the commission would enable the artist to make a new film that discloses the different taxonomic systems that have been employed by and shaped the two institutions. Birmingham Museums with artist Jess Flood-Paddock Rooted in sculpture, Jess Flood-Paddock’s work focuses on the emotional dimension of objects and what that can tell us about human interaction. Also employing photography, video and scenic painting, her work is often realised on a large-scale in ‘un-monumental’ materials (e.g. plywood, paper and fabric). Drawing on Birmingham Museum’s Collection Centre, which consists of over 500,000 objects dating from the Palaeolithic era 200,000 years ago to the present, the commission offers the artist a unique starting point for her research and encourages a new direction for the artist whose practice until now has been entirely studio-based. The Museum’s Collections Centre in Birmingham will act as her expanded studio and enable a new and wider repertoire of information and engagement. The Hepworth Wakefield with artist Des Hughes Using contradictory or unconventional materials, Des Hughes’ sculptures often go through a series of processes that subvert the objects’ statuses to offer a richer understanding of their purpose and materiality. Exploring the Wakefield Permanent Art Collection and archival material relating to Henry Moore as part of his initial archive research, Des Hughes will focus on the recent removal of Henry Moor’s bronze sculpture, Draped Reclining Figure (1979) from public display in Castleford as an unlikely alternative route into exploring the work of Henry Moore and British Modernism. Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art with artist Lucy McKenzie Lucy McKenzie is a Glasgow-born artist whose singular approach to painting draws on hugely varied sources and art histories. The artists’ on-going interest in and use of traditional techniques would allow for meaningful connections to be made with the historical holdings and extensive archive of the Scottish National Gallery. The commission would become the first of the artist’s works to enter a public collection within Scotland. 4. ABOUT THE 2013 JUDGING PANEL BRIAN GRIFFITHS (ARTIST AND TUTOR, ROYAL ACADEMY SCHOOLS) Since graduating from Goldsmiths College in the late 1990s, Brian Griffiths has been making sculpture and installations of overblown theatricality and pathos. His work has been exhibited extensively in the UK and internationally. He has had solo shows at Camden Arts Centre, Arnolfini, A Foundation, Vilma Gold, Galeria Luisa Strina and internationally has shown work at numerous museums including Tate Britain, The Groninger Museum in the Netherlands, The Mattress Factory Museum in Pittsburgh, CAPC museum in Bordeaux, Mostra D’Arte Contemporanea in Milan and Belém Museum of Modern Art, Brazil. He was recently shortlisted for the Fourth Plinth commission and was included in British Art Show 7: In the Days of the Comet. A monograph on the artist, Brian Griffiths: Crummy Love, was published by Koenig In 2011. He is presently Senior Tutor at the Royal Academy Schools, London. CHARLOTTE HIGGINS (CHIEF ARTS WRITER, THE GUARDIAN) Charlotte Higgins is the chief arts writer at The Guardian. She contributes to The Guardian‘s news, features, op-ed, literary and arts sections, and writes the Charlotte Higgins on Cultureblog. Charlotte began her career in journalism on Voguemagazine in 1995 and moved to The Guardian in 1997. She joined the arts desk in 1999, and the following year became classical music editor. In 2004 Charlotte moved to The Guardian‘s newsroom to become arts correspondent, reporting from the UK as well as overseas, including Venezuela, China and the Palestinian Territories. Born in Stoke-on-Trent, Charlotte has a degree in classics from Oxford. She is the author of Latin Love Lessons, and It’s All Greek to Me (both published by Short Books) and her third, Under Another Sky: Journeys in Roman Britain, was published in 2013 by Jonathan Cape. She won the 2010 Classical Association prize. Charlotte is a keen amateur violinist and chamber musician. ELIZABETH NEILSON (DIRECTOR, ZABLUDOWICZ COLLECTION) Since joining the Zabludowicz Collection in January 2006, Elizabeth has overseen the strategy, acquisitions and the direction of the Collection. She is also responsible for the exhibition programme and residencies in all locations. She completed an MA in Curating from Goldsmiths College, University of London in 2005 and a BA in Art History and Women’s Studies from The University of East London in 2003. Founded in 1994 by Poju and Anita Zabludowicz, the Zabludowicz Collection is a dynamic and growing collection spanning four decades of art, from the 1970s to today, and exhibits in venues in the UK, USA and Finland. The Collection actively creates new opportunities for audiences to engage with emerging art, and supports arts organisations and artists around the world. Its activities are shaped by an ethos of philanthropy and a commitment to engaging with local contexts and communities. KIRSTY OGG (CURATOR, WHITECHAPEL GALLERY) Since May 2009, Kirsty Ogg has been Curator at Whitechapel Gallery, London, where her projects have included Claire Barclay’s Bloomberg Commission, a survey of Gerard Byrne’s work, Karl Blossfeldt’s photography and The London Open. Between 1998 – 2008 she was the Director of The Showroom, London. During her time at The Showroom, Kirsty worked with artists including Jim Lambie, Claire Barclay, Eva Rothschild, Subodh Gupta, Richard Hughes and Daria Martin on the development and presentation of their first solo shows in London. After graduating from the Sculpture Department at Edinburgh College of Art in 1990, Kirsty was a member of the organizing committee at Transmission, 1993 – 1996. She then went on to work at Norwich Gallery at Norwich School of Art & Design. Kirsty is currently a lecturer on the MA Curating Course at Goldsmiths.
UNIQUE GLASGOW / EDINBURGH PARTNERSHIP BEARS FRUIT: ‘GLASGOW BOYS’ MASTERPIECE IN THE ORCHARD ON SHOW FOLLOWING JOINT ACQUISITION A masterpiece of Scottish art, which has been secured for the public in a unique partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland (NGS) and Glasgow City Council, has gone on display in Edinburgh today. In the Orchard, a major work by Sir James Guthrie (1859-1930), which is the first painting to be jointly owned by the two institutions, was acquired at auction in November 2012 for £636,500, with generous assistance from the National Heritage Memorial Fund (NHMF) and the Art Fund. This outstanding painting, which was one of the stars of Glasgow Museums’ hugely successful 2010 exhibition Pioneering Painters: The Glasgow Boys, will be on show at the Scottish National Gallery until the end of the year, before being shown at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum. It will be shared equally by the NGS and Glasgow Museums, and exhibited at the two institutions alternately. Helping to launch the new display today were Michael Clarke, Director, Scottish National Gallery; Ellen McAdam, Head of Museums and Collections, Glasgow Life; and Sarah Philp, Head of Programmes, the Art Fund. Commenting, Michael Clarke said: ‘The NGS has made a number of important acquisitions with sister institutions over the last 20 years, but this collaboration with Glasgow is unprecedented, and wholly appropriate given the significance of this iconic painting to the story of Scottish art. Since 1999 we have been fortunate in securing a number of key paintings by the Glasgow Boys, and acquiring In the Orchard with Glasgow Museums will enhance our displays of their work still further, complementing the great collection held in Glasgow.’ Councillor Archie Graham, the Chair of Glasgow Life and Depute Leader of Glasgow City Council, said: ‘This work was one of the star attractions at our record-breaking Glasgow Boys exhibition and we’re delighted that it has been secured for both city and nation through this unique partnership. Kelvingrove is home to one of the finest collections of Glasgow Boys works and we look forward to this outstanding Guthrie’s return in due course. Born in Greenock, James Guthrie was a leading member of the Glasgow Boys, a loose-knit group of young, radical painters who began working together in the early 1880s. The members of the group, which included E A Walton, George Henry and John Lavery, shared broad artistic ideals of naturalism and a desire to challenge the perceived supremacy of the art establishment in Edinburgh. In the Orchard was painted in the mid-1880s, a time of renewed creativity and intensive self-reinvention for Guthrie. Out of a crisis, when he almost abandoned a career in art, he emerged with one of the most complex and experimental paintings to have been made by any of the ‘Boys’. Guthrie started work on In the Orchard in 1885, at the Berwickshire village of Cockburnspath, where he had been working in the open air with Walton. The painting, which shows two children gathering apples, was Guthrie’s most challenging figure composition and took almost two years to complete. Subverting convention, Guthrie used a very large canvas (measuring 152.5 x 178 cm), a format normally reserved for grand history painting and highly unusual for such simple, rural subject matter. Moving away from the naturalism of his early masterpiece A Hind’s Daughter (which was painted in 1883, and is also in the Scottish National Gallery’s collection), Guthrie was developing a fascination with decorative pattern-making through deftly distributed touches of vibrant colour. Following its unveiling in Glasgow in 1887, alongside Lavery’s Tennis Party (Aberdeen Art Gallery) and Walton’s A Day Dream (Scottish National Gallery), In the Orchard enjoyed early international fame. The painting was shown at the Paris Salon of 1889 before being included in a group of Glasgow Boys works selected for the International Exhibition in Munich in 1890, which upstaged submissions by many of the European avant-garde. Following this sensational European debut for the Glasgow Boys, In the Orchard returned to Germany for a Berlin exhibition of 1893. Recognised as ‘one of the most important works by Glasgow artists’ on its unveiling, In the Orchard proved to be a seminal work in the development of painting in Scotland. The acquisition by Glasgow Museums and the NGS is a fitting recognition of its special place in the history of Scottish art.
MAN RAY PORTRAITS 22 June – 22 September 2013 Scottish National Portrait Gallery 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh EH2 1JD Telephone: 0131 624 6200 | Admission £7 /£5 nationalgalleries.org Sponsored by Baillie Gifford Part of the Edinburgh Art Festival 1 August – 1 September 2013 Exhibition organised by the National Portrait Gallery, London A stunning exhibition of photographs, which provides a dazzling record of some of the most highly charged and exciting periods in twentieth-century art and fashion will feature in Man Ray Portraits, the Scottish National Portrait Gallery’s major summer show for 2013. Man Ray Portraits features some of the most celebrated images in the history of photography and allows visitors to glimpse the world of creativity and glamour that Man Ray, a leader of the Surrealist movement, inhabited. Man Ray is widely considered to be one of the most innovative and influential artists of the last century, renowned for his remarkable creativity and experimentation across a range of media, including photography, film, printmaking, painting and sculpture. This is the first major museum retrospective in the UK to focus on his use of photography to make defining portraits of his contemporaries, in the period between 1916 and 1968. Baillie Gifford Senior Partner, Sarah Whitley, commented: ‘Baillie Gifford is the proud sponsor of Man Ray Portraits, a major retrospective of the artist’s work and one of the highlights of the 2013 Edinburgh Art Festival. The Scottish National Portrait Gallery has a long tradition of bringing iconic artworks to the city and this exhibition is eagerly anticipated.” Showcasing over 100 works, drawn from major international museums and private collections across the world, the exhibition charts Man Ray’s career from early photographs, taken before he left New York for France in 1921, to those made in his final post-war years in Paris. The significance of magazines and periodicals in establishing Man Ray’s name and reputation is demonstrated by the inclusion of a number of the vintage titles in which his work was first reproduced. The insight these provide is especially valuable, as some portraits which would otherwise have been lost in the chaos of World War II now appear only as reproductions in periodicals. Man Ray’s most prolific period was spent at the centre of the avant-garde and literary circles of 1920s and 1930s Paris. Working for high-style magazines such as Vanity Fair, Harper’s Bazaar and Vogue, and more specialised art journals such as Minotaure and Littérature,he created memorable portraits of the era’s major figures, as well as personal and often intimate portraits of friends, lovers and his social circle. The exhibition includes striking images of Marcel Duchamp, André Breton, Jean Cocteau, Pablo Picasso, James Joyce, Erik Satie, Henri Matisse, Igor Stravinsky, Salvador Dalí, Virginia Woolf and Aldous Huxley. Man Ray Portraits also brings together iconic portraits of Man Ray’s lover Lee Miller, who worked as his assistant before establishing her own remarkable career as a photographer, and Kiki de Montparnasse, whom he immortalised in the image known as Noire et Blanche, in which Kiki’s pale, sleeping face rests on a tabletop beside a carved ebony African mask. His last muse, his wife, Juliet, whom he met in 1940, is a frequent subject in Man Ray’s later work, and appears here in a number of images which capture the glamour of the artist’s years in Hollywood, between 1940 and 1950. Born Michael Emmanuel Radnitzky in Philadelphia, Man Ray (1890–1976) spent his early life in New York, turning down a scholarship to study architecture in order to devote himself to painting. He initially taught himself photography in order to reproduce his works of art but in 1920 began to work as a portrait photographer to fund his work in other media. In 1915, whilst at Ridgefield artist colony in New Jersey, he met the French artist Marcel Duchamp and together they tried to establish a New York outpost of the Dada movement. His friendship with Duchamp led to Man Ray’s move to Paris in 1921, where, as a contributor to the Dada and Surrealist movements, he was perfectly placed to make defining images of his contemporaries from the avant-garde. In this period Man Ray was instrumental in developing and producing a type of photogram (an image made by placing objects directly onto the surface of light-sensitive paper and then exposing it to light) which he called ‘Rayographs’, and is credited with inventing, alongside Lee Miller, the process of solarisation, which partially reverses the light and dark tones in an image and creates a seemingly glowing profile around the subject. The use of solarisation can be seen in the portraits of Elsa Schiaparelli, Lee Miller, Suzy Solidor and his own Self-Portrait with Camera included in the exhibition. Following the outbreak of World War II, Man Ray left France for the US and took up residence in Hollywood. Although officially devoting himself once more to painting, new research has revealed Man Ray made a number of significant photographic portraits during his Hollywood years, and several are shown for the first time in this exhibition. Film star subjects he portrayed include Ruth Ford, Paulette Goddard, Ava Gardner, Tilly Losch and Dolores del Rio. Returning to Paris in 1951 Man Ray once again made the city his home, remaining there until his death in 1976. His portraits from the 1950s include experiments with colour photography such as his portraits of Juliette Greco and Yves Montand and the exhibition closes with his outstanding portrait of film star Catherine Deneuve from 1968. Christopher Baker, Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, commented: ‘We are delighted to be hosting this major international exhibition which explores in depth the arresting and witty portraiture of one of the world’s greatest photographers. Man Ray allows us to taste the culture of Paris in the 1920s and Hollywood in the 1940s – an intoxicating combination.’ EXHIBITION TOUR Man Ray Portraits will tour to the State Pushkin Museum of Fine Arts, Moscow from 28 October 2013 - 19 January 2014. PUBLICATION A fully-illustrated 224 page catalogue, Man Ray Portraits, accompanies the exhibition. The catalogue includes an introductory essay by Marina Warner, Professor in the Department of Literature, Film and Theatre Studies at the University of Essex, and a writer of fiction, criticism and history, and an extensive illustrated chronology by Helen Trompeteler, Assistant Curator of Photographs at the National Portrait Gallery. Price £35 (hardback) / £25 (paperback). The Scottish showing of Man Ray Portraits has been generously sponsored by Baillie Gifford & Co. The company currently employs over 760 people and has assets under management and advice of over £93 billion as at 31 March 2013. An asset management firm founded in 1908, it is headquartered in Edinburgh where most of its staff live and work. Globally, Baillie Gifford manages investments on behalf of pension funds, financial institutions, charities and retail investors. Baillie Gifford plays an active role in the community by supporting projects in the areas of education, social inclusion, and the arts. Baillie Gifford & Co has sponsored the following National Galleries of Scotland exhibitions: Phoebe Anna Traquair 1852-1936 (1993); Sir James Gunn 1893-1964 (1995); David Livingstone and the Victorian Encounter with Africa (1996); George Rodger: The African Photographs (1996); The Winter Queen: The Life of Elizabeth of Bohemia 1596-1662 (1998); Turner & Sir Walter Scott: The Provincial Antiquities and Picturesque Scenery of Scotland (2000); Andrew Geddes (1783-1844): Painter - Printmaker: 'A Man of Pure Taste' (2001); The King Over the Water: The Life of Prince James Francis Edward Stewart (2001); Rubens: Drawing on Italy (2002); Below Stairs: 400 Years of Servants’ Portraits (2004); Gauguin’s Vision (2005); Impressionism and Scotland (2008); and Elizabeth Blackadder (2011). Man Ray Portraits is shown in the Robert Mapplethorpe Gallery in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Named after the renowned American photographer, the Gallery is supported by a very generous donation from The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. This is being used over three years to produce innovative displays, exhibitions and research. Recent exhibitions have included Edith Tudor-Hart: In the Shadow of Tyranny and Jitka Hanzlová. The Gallery is the first purpose-built photography space of its kind in a major museum in Scotland. -ENDS-
A magnificent Dutch flower painting by Jan van Huysum (1682-1749) has been acquired for the nation by the National Galleries of Scotland through the Acceptance in Lieu scheme. It is the first Dutch flower still life to enter the Scottish National Gallery’s collection. The tax settlement value of the painting is £2.45million. The painting is the first work by this artist to enter the National collection. Indeed, no painting from this period of van Huysum’s career is in any Scottish public collection. Commenting on the acquisition, Director of the Scottish National Gallery, Michael Clarke said, 'Van Huysum was an absolute master of the art of flower painting in 18th-century Holland. Expensive flowers had been imported into Holland from the seventeenth century onwards and there was a great demand from the affluent merchant classes for paintings which depicted these exotic blooms. The hyper-realism and technical sophistication of many of these flower paintings is incredible. This is a really major example, and we are delighted to have been allocated it through the government’s Acceptance in Lieu scheme.' Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, Fiona Hyslop said, 'The Acceptance in Lieu scheme allows the Scottish Government to acquire important works of art on behalf of our national collections. With up to 10 items allocated to Scotland each year, it is an excellent way to enrich the range of internationally renowned paintings and artefacts that are available for everyone in Scotland to enjoy. I was very pleased to be given the opportunity to allocate the Jan van Huysum painting to the National Galleries of Scotland. It’s an important and valuable acquisition and one which I hope gives great joy to the Galleries’ many thousands of visitors.' Jan van Huysum is regarded as the most important painter of flower still lifes of his time and received prestigious commissions from royalty and aristocracy throughout Europe. This painting belongs to a small group of works from Van Huysum’s transitional period when he began to introduce more light into his dark compositions, eventually leading to his bright flower paintings with landscape backgrounds. This particular painting is his largest and most ambitious on copper, a support he used only occasionally. ENDS.
One of the greatest masterpieces of British art, Constable’s Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows 1831, has been secured for the British public through major grants from the Heritage Lottery Fund (£15.8 million), the Art Fund (£1 million), a very substantial donation from The Manton Foundation, and Tate Members. The acquisition is part of a ground-breaking new partnership, called Aspire, between five national and regional galleries: Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales; the National Galleries of Scotland; Colchester and Ipswich Museums; Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum; and Tate Britain. The partnership will enable the work, owned by Tate, to go on almost constant view in partner venues across the UK. From today it will go on view in the Constable room at Tate Britain until the end of the year before being shown at the five national and regional galleries participating in the programme. The work has been acquired for the special price of £23.1 million with tax concessions, equivalent to an open market sale of £40 million. The acquisition has been made possible through the most generous collaboration of the children of the late Lord Ashton of Hyde and purchased through the London fine art agents Robert Holden Ltd. The painting had previously been on view at The National Gallery on long-term loan since 1983. Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows is one of a series of monumental ‘six-footer’ canvases painted by the artist. This was the scale he reserved for his finest compositions, the painting she wished to make a great impact in the crowded, competitive hang of the Royal Academy exhibitions. This work is the most visually spectacular of all the ‘six footers’, the most loaded in meaning and the one of which he was most proud. Constable called it ‘The Great Salisbury’ and wrote “I am told I got it to look better than anything I have yet done”. Nicholas Serota, Director, Tate said: “Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows is one of the great masterpieces of British art. I am extremely grateful to the owners who have worked with us while we have raised the funds to ensure the painting remains in the UK. I would also like to thank the National Gallery for their support and the Heritage Lottery Fund, The Manton Foundation, the Art Fund and Tate Members who have recognised the importance of this work and that it should enter the national collection. Through the innovative Aspire programme the work will now be widely accessible across Britain.” Jenny Abramsky, Chair, Heritage Lottery Fund said: “HLF is proud to be a major funder of this masterpiece. Our investment of over £15 million is substantial but reflects the fact that these moments – those that give us the chance to save such a precious and quintessentially British heritage icon – come along very rarely. It is unimaginable that this particular painting might have ended up anywhere other than in a UK public collection. Constable was truly a man of the people who believed that art was for everyone and not the select few and it is very fitting that the innovative approach of the Aspire project will ensure that many more people around the country will get to see and enjoy Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows than ever before. That’s really something to celebrate.” Sandra Niles of The Manton Foundation said: “The Trustees of the Manton Foundation were unanimous in their support of this effort to secure this extraordinary painting for many generations of audiences to enjoy. We hope that our grant is a way of recognising the lifelong interest and philanthropy of my grandparents, Sir Edwin and Lady Manton.” Stephen Deuchar, Director, the Art Fund, said: “Constable’s Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows is a British icon. Now, thanks to a funding partnership between the Art Fund, the Heritage Lottery Fund and The Manton Foundation, it is entering the nation’s permanent collection and will be shown in many museums across the UK through an innovative sharing arrangement. It's a great pleasure to have helped Tate and its four partner museums make this happen.” Adrian Green, Director, Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum said: “The Aspire partners are delighted that the funding has been secured to save Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows for the nation. The Aspire programme will ensure that the painting will reach as wide an audience as possible, particularly through a range of imaginative events at each of the partner venues. At Salisbury Museum the opportunity to see the painting and then ‘step out into the canvas’ will be an unforgettable experience.” The Aspire programme is a partnership between five UK institutions, all of which will organise special public programmes highlighting the painting. It will be seen in exhibitions and displays which include the partner venues’ existing collections and reflect the individual context of each site. After the initial five year period all the partners will continue to have special access to the painting for their exhibitions, while ensuring that this extraordinary work is lent to other institutions so that it can be enjoyed by a wide public. Each display will be complemented by an education programme which encourages audiences to learn more about this painting and the work of John Constable. The project will establish a national network for Constable Studies to promote exchange and create new opportunities for training and skills development with a particular focus on developing new audiences for heritage through traineeships and the provision of education materials for schools, teachers and families. An image of the painting and colouring sheet, along with other related activities will be available online on Tate Kids (kids.tate.org.uk). They will allow children to explore the painting in closer detail. For press information contact: Patricia Convery, National Galleries of Scotland Press Office +44 (0)131 624 6325 [email protected] or Elizabeth Flanagan or Ruth Findlay, Tate Press Office +44 (0)20 7887 4941 [email protected] www.tate.org.uk Notes to Editors Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows depicts Salisbury Cathedral under both a heavy cloud and a striking arched rainbow from across the River Avon. The scene has been interpreted as a metaphor for pressure felt by the Church of England from its diminished political importance. The painting was first exhibited at the Royal Academy’s Summer Exhibition in 1831 and later in a regional exhibition in Birmingham as directed by Constable, who wanted the work to be seen by as many people as possible. The UK holds seven of the twelve large-scale works Constable exhibited, and five of the thirteen full-size sketches that he made for these. This work was one of two which were privately owned. There are three pairings of sketch and finished painting in Britain. Securing this work for the UK has now added a fourth pairing. The full-size sketch for Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows is held by the Guildhall Art Gallery, London. The order of displays in the Aspire programme is as follows: National Museum Cardiff,2014; Christchurch Mansion, Ipswich, Colchester & Ipswich Museums, 2015; Salisbury and South Wiltshire Museum, 2016; National Galleries of Scotland, 2017; Tate Britain,2018. Sir Edwin Manton (1909 - 2005) was born in England and moved to New York in 1933.Sir Edwin was a collector of paintings by John Constable and his contemporaries, and a generous benefactor to the arts, the church and medicine. His collection, which is now at The Sterling and Francine Clark Institute in Williamstown, also includes works by Gainsborough, Rowlandson and Turner. He was knighted in 1994 for charitable services to the arts. Prior to this exceptional grant to the acquisition of Constable's Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows, the Manton Foundation most recently contributed the lead donation to the Tate Britain Millbank Project.
TWENTY-FIVE YEARS OF CONTEMPORARY ART IN SCOTLAND TO BE CELEBRATED IN LANDMARK NATIONWIDE EXHIBITION A landmark exhibition celebrating some of the very best art to have emerged from Scotland in the last 25 years is announced today (Thursday 16 May). GENERATION will see new and existing work shown at more than 50 venues across the country from June to October 2014. This nationwide programme will be one of the most ambitious celebrations of contemporary art ever held by a single country. GENERATION has been developed as a partnership between the National Galleries of Scotland and Glasgow Life, supported by Creative Scotland. It will include major exhibitions of work at all of the National Galleries of Scotland sites in Edinburgh and Glasgow Life run venues Tramway and Gallery of Modern Art (GoMA) in Glasgow. An Associates programme will see a diverse and exciting range of work shown in a wide array of venues, from Orkney to the Western Isles to the Borders. Coinciding with Glasgow’s hosting of the Commonwealth Games in the summer of 2014, GENERATION aims to reinforce Scotland’s position as an international centre for the visual arts, and to make contemporary art more accessible and relevant to as wide a range of people as possible. In addition to the exhibitions of artists’ work, GENERATION will include an ambitious public engagement and events programme taking place across the country. There will be a particular focus on involving young people to inspire them to become the artists and audiences of the future. GENERATION will feature world class works by artists whose practice has been shaped and developed in Scotland over the past 25 years and who have received international recognition within that time including artists David Shrigley, Ross Sinclair, Lorna MacIntyre, Toby Paterson and Cathy Wilkes. Details of the full exhibition programme and featured artists are being confirmed and will be announced later in the year. GENERATION will trace the remarkable development of contemporary art in Scotland over the last 25 years, act as a spring-board for new work to be created, and offer unique opportunities to enjoy work by some of Scotland’s most engaging and imaginative artists. Ben Thomson, Chairman of the National Galleries of Scotland said "Scotland has produced some great internationally acclaimed contemporary art, not only from Scottish artists but also from artists working and training here from all over the world. GENERATION is a celebration of this Scottish success story where some of our best art over the last 25 years will be displayed in some 50 galleries across the Nation during the summer of 2014. It will enable visitors to enjoy for free this generation of artists in depth at a time when there will be considerable international focus on Scotland. GENERATION joins the forces of Glasgow Life, Creative Scotland and the National Galleries of Scotland to highlight our cultural success and provide a once-in-a-generation opportunity to celebrate the achievements of our artists as well as to inspire audiences for years to come." Councillor Archie Graham, the Chair of Glasgow Life, said: “This is a unique partnership which will bring together, for the first time, the unique talents and works which have propelled both Glasgow and Scotland’s contemporary art onto a global stage. “The city enjoys international recognition as a thriving centre for the production and hosting of contemporary visual arts and has been home to a significant number of Turner Prize nominees and winners in recent years. “Now is the time to tell the story of how Glasgow and Scotland has nurtured such incredible talent and to ensure that communities from Orkney to the Borders can share in what promises to be an amazing show.” Iain Munro, Acting CEO, Creative Scotland said: “GENERATION is a significant opportunity for people across Scotland to experience the imagination and excitement of some of the best contemporary art to have been produced here over the last twenty-five years. “If you think contemporary art is not for you, I’d urge you to give GENERATION a try. It’s home grown work which is admired and enjoyed across the world. “GENERATION is also about the future, about inspiring young people to want to play their part in the next twenty-five years of contemporary art in Scotland.” Fiona Hyslop, Cabinet Secretary for Culture and External Affairs, said: “Scotland has an excellent record for producing visual art that is inspiring, thought-provoking and which prompts international acclaim. GENERATION will be an ambitious, national celebration which will see museums and galleries all over the country come together to showcase the very best of Scottish contemporary art; making it accessible to as wide an audience as possible. “At a time when the world’s spotlight will be firmly on Scotland as we host major international events like the Commonwealth Games and the Ryder Cup, GENERATION will celebrate Scotland’s visual art and artists and promote our rich culture and cutting edge creativity to audiences at home and from around the globe.” The full exhibition programme and featured artists for GENERATION will be announced in Autumn 2013. For further information, please contact: Gillian McCormack | Material_UK | [email protected] | 07792 423 012 Claire Snedden | Material_UK | [email protected] | 07789 511 854 Notes to editors 1. GENERATION will feature work by artists who came to attention working in Scotland between 1989 and 2014 and include work by artists born in Scotland, as well artists of other nationalities who studied and live or lived in Scotland. 2. A specially convened Curatorial Board comprised of representatives of the partner organsiations along with an Associate Curator, Katrina Brown, has formed the overall shape of the project, its specific manifestation across the partner organisations’ venues and the extension of the programme nation-wide to include many other galleries and organisations across Scotland. GENERATION, Curatorial Board: Simon Groom, Director, SNGMA Sarah Munro, Head of Arts, Glasgow Life Amanda Catto, Portfolio Manager, Creative Scotland Katrina Brown, Associate Curator for GENERATION Keith Hartley, Chief Curator & Deputy Director, SNGMA Victoria Hollows, Contemporary Arts & Museums Manager, GoMA Lucy Askew, Senior Curator, SNGMA Working with Jenny Crowe, Project Manager for GENERATIO 3. This is the first ever such national project in Scotland. Previous exhibitions in Scotland that have offered a view of the contemporary art of their time have included: ‘The Vigorous Imagination: New Scottish Art’ Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, 1987 ‘New Art in Scotland’ CCA, 1994 ‘Here + Now: Scottish Art 1990-2001’ Dundee Contemporary Arts McManus Galleries and Generator Projects, Dundee Aberdeen Art Gallery and Peacock Printmakers, Aberdeen 4. Creative Scotland is the national development agency for the arts, screen and creative industries. www.creativescotland.com
THROUGH AMERICAN EYES: FREDERIC CHURCH AND THE LANDSCAPE OIL SKETCH 11 May 2013 – 8 September 2013 Scottish National Gallery, The Mound, Edinburgh EH2 2EL Admission free The major exhibition at the Scottish National Gallery this summer will celebrate the work of one of the greatest of all American landscape painters. Through American Eyes: Frederic Church and the Landscape Oil Sketch will bring together 25 works by an artist who revelled in the grandeur of the natural world, and whose dramatic paintings of far-flung locations from Newfoundland to the Middle East made him extremely popular in Europe as well as the USA. Frederic Church (1826-1900) rose to fame as a member of the Hudson River School, a group of American painters who started that country’s great tradition of landscape painting. However, it was the artist’s travels in search of stirring subjects and appetite for new experiences that defined his output. Working in the outdoors, in front of the spectacular settings that inspired him, Church painted rapid sketches in oil paint which often served as studies for large-scale paintings, but whose freshness and spontaneity make them remarkable in their own right. Though Church was a prolific and hugely accomplished master of this technique, and practised it throughout his life, this is the first exhibition in Europe to explore this aspect of his work. It features works such as Storm in the Blue Mountains, Jamaica, 1865 and Königssee, Bavaria, 1868, which perfectly illustrate Church’s skill in combining dramatic compositions with beautifully observed light effects. Other works, such as Popacatépetl and Ixtaccíhuatl at Sunset, c.1884-5; Ed Deir, Petra, Jordan, 1868; and The Iceberg, which was painted in the waters off Labrador around 1875, are a testament to Church's adventurous and pioneering spirit and the ambitious scope of his vision. The exhibition will also include paintings such as Winter Twilight from Olana, c.1871-72, and Sunrise (The Rising Sun), 1862, which were executed close to Church’s home in Hudson, New York State, with its with magnificent views of the Hudson River and Catskill Mountains. To illustrate the relationship of Church's oil sketches to his finished studio canvases, the exhibition will also include the greatest American landscape painting in Europe, Niagara Falls, from the American Side, 1867, from the Scottish National Gallery's own collection. This breathtakingly detailed masterpiece, with its vertiginous viewpoint above the cascading waters, created a sensation when it was shown in London in 1868, and helps to illustrate the significance of Church’s achievement: in a time before National Geographic and Sir David Attenborough, when the art of photography was still in its infancy, Church’s paintings of the Arctic, South America, Europe and the Middle East brought to the great crowds that came to see them the visual wonders of the world beyond their reach. Through American Eyes: Frederic Church and the Landscape Oil Sketch is organised by The National Gallery, London, in partnership with and through major support from the Terra Foundation for American Art. Additional support comes from The Olana Partnership and generous loans from Olana and Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, Smithsonian Institution.
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art 73 Belford Road, Edinburgh EH4 3DR Telephone: 0131 624 6200 | Admission free nationalgalleries.org Two extraordinary sculptures by the great Surrealist artist Joan Miró (1893-1983) have been placed on long loan to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh. The massive bronze sculptures, the tallest of which measures ten feet in height, have been generously lent by the Miró Estate in Spain. Femme [Woman],1970 and Personnage [Figure], 1978 were installed today on the lawn in front of the Gallery, where they will remain for up to five years. Miró was born in Barcelona in 1893. He first visited Paris in 1920 and settled there the following year, establishing contacts with artists including his fellow Spaniard Pablo Picasso. His interest in poetry and dream imagery brought him close to the artists who would launch the Surrealist movement in 1924. Inspired by dreams, psychoanalysis and the unconscious, the Surrealists sought to go ‘beyond realism’ – the literal definition of Surrealism. The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art owns a world-famous collection of Surrealist art, which includes four paintings by Miró, all dating from this early Surrealist period. Miró is perhaps best known as a painter, but he also made a remarkable body of sculptures. He first sculptures date from the early 1930s, when he began assembling together items that he had found by chance: these included objects as various and unlikely as a coat stand, an umbrella, bed-springs and a stuffed parrot. The majority of Miró’s sculptures date from the 1960s and 1970s, and were cast in bronze. They generally began as ordinary objects he had found or bought, and then had enlarged. Femme [Woman] of 1970 is based on a perfume bottle, which by the addition of spindly arms and a massive leaf shape (Miró’s shorthand for the female sex) he transformed into a woman. The spray nozzle at the top now reads as an eye. Personnage [Figure] of 1978 is based on a bar of soap sitting on a perforated soap dish. Placed in a vertical, standing position and given two ‘eyes’, it now assumes the appearance of a head. Miró’s works are witty and playful and have an extraordinary lightness of touch, but they also count as some of the most impressive monumental sculptures of the twentieth century. Countless others have tried to emulate his apparently casual, easy approach to assembled sculpture, but none has succeeded. These two works featured in the major exhibition of Miró sculpture recently held at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park (YSP) near Wakefield. Thanks to the YSP, the Miró Estate has very generously agreed to lend the two bronzes to the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art for a five-year period. Joan Punyet Miró, the artist’s grandson remarked: ‘I'm extremely happy to have these two sculptures created by my grandfather in the Scottish National Gallery of Modern. Art. I'm sure he'd have been thrilled by this project.’ Simon Groom, Director of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, stated: ‘Our Gallery is internationally renowned for its major collection of Surrealist art – but until now we have not been able to show any major Surrealist work outdoors. We are deeply indebted to the Miró Estate and the Yorkshire Sculpture Park for enabling us to exhibit these extraordinary works.’ -ENDS-
The House of Annie Lennox 23 MARCH 2013 – 30 JUNE 2013 SCOTTISH NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY, 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh, EH2 1JD Admission free One of the nation's most internationally acclaimed singer-songwriters will be the focus of a spectacular new exhibition which opens at the Portrait Gallery this weekend. The House of Annie Lennox, curated in partnership with The V&A, London, brings together an array of stunning photographs, iconic videos, and a dazzling selection of costumes, which chart Annie's unique career from its early beginnings, through her time in The Tourists and Eurythmics, as well as her hugely successful solo career, to the present. The show also includes two photographic portraits of the artist from the Gallery’s permanent collection. The range of work on show illustrates just how significant Annie Lennox is to the history of popular music and culture. The costumes in particular demonstrate the diversity of her style and her distinct command over identity and performance - from the androgynous two-piece leather suit worn during the Eurythmics 1980s Revenge tour, to the cabaret chic costume featured in the video for Little Bird, which was taken from the chart-topping 1992 solo album Diva. Another highlight is the striking outfit she donned for her show-stopping performance of the song Under Pressure with David Bowie at the Freddy Mercury Tribute Concert of the same year. The House of Annie Lennox continues a theme in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery’s recent exhibition programme, focused on impressive, strong and socially or politically engaged women. As a musical artist Annie Lennox has brought joy and inspiration to millions of people, and as humanitarian campaigner she has championed socio-political issues, such as the plight of women and children affected by AIDS. Commenting on exhibition, Annie Lennox, said, ‘It's an incredible honour and privilege to have been given an opportunity to share and display aspects of my life's work at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. It has given me a tremendous sense of validation, and in doing so, brings a certain personal cycle to a place of arrival and completion. I hope that people will enjoy the exhibition, and garner a sense of whatever it is that's driven and inspired me.’ Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Christopher Baker, said, ‘We are so thrilled to be showcasing the career of such a distinguished Scottish song writer, performer and humanitarian campaigner. The exhibition is in essence a remarkable self-portrait, which allows us to see glimpses of Annie Lennox’s richly varied and enduring creativity: it will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of 2013 at the Portrait Gallery.’ Director of The Victoria & Albert Museum in London, Martin Roth, said, ‘We are delighted to be showing the V&A's House of Annie Lennox exhibition at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery as part of our programme of touring exhibitions around the UK. Annie Lennox is one of the world's most renowned female performers whose creativity informs her unique sense of image and style. It is particularly exciting to be showing the work of this Scottish performer in Scotland at this time as we work with our partners in Dundee to create V&A at Dundee, a new design museum for Scotland.’ ENDS.
EDITH TUDOR-HART: IN THE SHADOW OF TYRANNY 2 MARCH 2013 – 26 MAY 2013 SCOTTISH NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY, 1 Queen Street, Edinburgh EH2 1JD Admission free The life and work of one of the most extraordinary photographers in Britain during the 1930s and 1940s is the subject of a major new exhibition at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery. Based on extensive new research, Edith Tudor-Hart: In the Shadow of Tyranny, is the first full presentation of the Austrian-born photographer’s work. The exhibition presents over 80 photographs, many of which have never been shown before, and includes film footage, Tudor-Hart’s scrapbook and a selection of her published stories in books and magazines. During the 1930s, photography became implicated in the vital political and social questions of the era as never before. The enhanced technological capacities of the camera and faster printing processes offered left-wing political activists new techniques for popular mobilisation. The medium took on a sharper social purpose, breaking down the traditional divisions of culture through its quality of immediacy and capacity for self-representation. Edith Tudor-Hart was a key exponent of this aesthetic of engagement, with images that show a sophisticated realism, marked by their directness and capacity to communicate issues of inequality and deprivation. In a turbulent decade, she attempted to use the camera as a political weapon, aligning her practice with the wider worker photography movement. Tudor-Hart’s photography dealt with many of the major social issues of the day, including poverty, unemployment and slum housing. Her imagery is a vital record of the politically-charged atmosphere of inter-war Vienna and Britain during the Great Slump of the 1930s. After 1945, Tudor-Hart concentrated on questions of child welfare, producing some of the most psychologically penetrating imagery of children of her era. Tudor-Hart’s life story as a photographer is inextricably tied to the great political upheavals of the twentieth century. Born Edith Suschitzky in Vienna in 1908, she grew up in radical Jewish circles in a city ravaged by the impact of the First World War. Her childhood was dominated by social issues in a culture acutely aware of the impact of the Russian Revolution. After training as a Montessori teacher, she studied photography at the Bauhaus in Dessau and pursued a career as a photojournalist. However, her life was turned upside down in May 1933 when she was arrested whilst working as an agent for the Communist Party of Austria. She escaped long-term imprisonment by marrying an English doctor, Alexander Tudor-Hart, and was exiled to London shortly afterwards. Notoriously, Tudor-Hart continued to combine her practice as a photographer with low-level espionage for the Soviet Union and was pursued by the security services until her death in 1973. Tudor-Hart’s photography introduced into Britain formal and narrative features that derived from her training on the Continent. Her method initiates a dialogue with those she photographs, very different from the more distancing imagery of the photojournalists. Along with thirty or so German-speaking exile photographers, many of Jewish origin, Tudor-Hart helped transform British photography. After the Second World War, rejected by Fleet Street and the British establishment, Tudor-Hart turned to documenting issues of child welfare. Her photographs were published in Picture Post and a range of other British magazines. By the late 1950s she had abandoned photography altogether. Commenting on the exhibition, Director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Christopher Baker, said, ‘We are really pleased to be staging this thrilling retrospective of Tudor-Hart’s photography. It combines stunning images with an intriguing life-story and illuminates a turbulent period in European history. Tudor-Hart was one of the great photographers of her era.’ Edith Tudor-Hart: In the Shadow of Tyranny is drawn largely from the photographer’s negative archive, which was donated to the National Galleries of Scotland by her family in 2004. The exhibition travels to the Wien Museum in September and will form the first complete presentation of her work in Austria. Edith Tudor-Hart: In the Shadow of Tyranny is being shown in the Robert Mapplethorpe Photography Gallery and follows on from Jitka Hanzlová, continuing a strong series of photography exhibitions in the refurbished Scottish National Portrait Gallery. The Robert Mapplethorpe Photography Gallery, named after the renowned American photographer, is supported by a very generous donation from The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation. This is being used over three years to produce innovative displays, exhibitions and research. The Gallery is the first purpose-built photography space of its kind in a major museum in Scotland. ENDS.
The Art Fund today announced that it has completed the transfer of the late Sir Denis Mahon’s private collection of 57 Italian Baroque paintings into the collections of museums and galleries across the UK, in fulfilment of Sir Denis's wishes. The works, which include masterpieces by Guercino, Guido Reni, Domenichino, Ludovico Carracci, Luca Giordano, Pietro de Cortona, Giovanni Antonio Pellegrini and Giuseppe Maria Crespi, have entered the permanent collections of six UK museums and galleries: twenty-five works have gone to the National Gallery, London; twelve to the Ashmolean, Oxford; eight to the Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh; six to the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge; five to Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, and one to Temple Newsam House, Leeds. Sir Denis formed his collection over several decades, progressively demonstrating the range, significance and quality of the Italian baroque despite its comparative neglect by previous scholars. His passion and erudition – and the sheer quality of the works he brought together – changed hearts and minds and had a discernible impact on its very status in the history of European art. The national collections are very greatly enriched by this extraordinary bequest. Sir Denis, who died in 2011, was one of Britain’s most distinguished art historians, collectors and campaigners. He left his collection to the Art Fund with instructions that the collection should be placed on display in specific locations across the country, in perpetuity. The collection has been on long-term loan from Sir Denis to the respective museums for many years, on the condition that they did not charge admission or sell works from their collections. Sir Denis saw the Art Fund, independent of government funding and influence, as the ideal long-term guardian of his collection and his wishes. A member of the charity since a schoolboy, he joined the Art Fund in 1926 and remained a close supporter and advocate until his death in 2011. Sir Denis Mahon's life’s work focussed on the formation of one of the most important private collections of 17th Century Italian Baroque paintings anywhere, but also entailed passionate and vociferous campaigning on behalf of museums. He was outspoken in his criticism of any government which sought to starve museums of funding or interfere in their independence. Sir Denis campaigned on two fronts above all: in support of free admission to national museums, and against the selling of works of art from museums’ permanent collections. Under the terms of the transfer of his collection into public ownership, announced today, the Art Fund's trustees, together with trustees of the Sir Denis Mahon Charitable Trust, reserve the right to withdraw works from museums which breach these principles at any point in the future. In addition to the 57 bequeathed works, Sir Denis has also left a £1 million legacy to the Art Fund. He also gave the Ashmolean a set of 50 works associated with Guercino. Throughout his life, Sir Denis Mahon gave several major donations to the Art Fund to support major museum acquisitions, and often used his collection and donations for works of art to pressurise the present-day government to support the UK’s museums and galleries. In 1977, Bellini’s Madonna and Child Enthroned – the last major Bellini still in private hands and valued at over £1 million, was offered to Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery on condition it raised the £400,000 needed for its purchase before the three months deadline. Sir Denis offered £50,000 on condition the government matched his donation. Government grants amounted to £72,000 for that picture, which was secured by the museum. Stephen Deuchar, Art Fund Director says: “Sir Denis Mahon was a life-long supporter of the Art Fund and shared our fundamental commitment to widening free public access to art. His vision as an art collector was extraordinary, as was his determination that his collection should ultimately be on public display. It is an enormous honour for the Art Fund to have been entrusted with his private collection and to oversee its transfer into the permanent collections of these museums and galleries across the UK.” Dr Nicholas Penny, Director, National Gallery says: “Sir Denis was associated with the National Gallery for nearly eighty years, beginning with his appointment as an attaché to the curatorial department under Kenneth Clark and culminating in the great celebratory exhibition of his collection here in the 1990s – Discovering the Italian Baroque. As a hyperactive trustee of the gallery and exacting friend of many curators he did much to urge us to acquire great Baroque paintings. We also acquired some from him at the end of his life and he bequeathed a masterpiece by Guercino to us. Now in addition we have received many more. He is one of our greatest benefactors and we will always honour his memory.” Sir John Leighton, Director-General, National Galleries of Scotland says: “We are delighted to have received eight paintings from the late Sir Denis Mahon’s private collection through the stewardship of the Art Fund. He was an inspirational and passionate collector who supported the National Galleries of Scotland over many years. His generous and careful choice of paintings was made in order to complement other works within the Scottish national collection and we are extremely grateful that we are now able to keep these key works of art on permanent display to the Scottish public.” Christopher Brown, Director, Ashmolean Museum says: “Sir Denis Mahon was a tireless champion of museums. During his lifetime, the Ashmolean was hugely enriched by Denis’s friendship and support. We are profoundly grateful to him and to the Art Fund for the allocation of these twelve important paintings from the Mahon collection. They are on display in the Ashmolean’s permanent galleries where, as Denis wished, they are seen by millions of visitors free of charge.” Simon Cane, Director of Birmingham Museums Trust says: “Sir Denis Mahon's generous bequest to Birmingham Museums Trust consists of five paintings by Salvator Rosa, Francesco Albani, Giovanni Battista Gaulli, Pier Francesco Mola and Pieter van Laer which have been on long-term loan and displayed at BMAG since 1999. The Mahon pictures add significantly to the visitors' experience as they sit particularly appropriately with the Museums' collection of Italian Baroque paintings. I am delighted that we are now able to welcome them into the permanent collection thanks to the vision of Sir Denis Mahon and the support of the Art Fund.” David Scrase, Acting Director, Fitzwilliam Museum says: "We are delighted that this choice group of paintings have become a permanent part of our collection. Sir Denis Mahon chose with great care the long-term home for his paintings. Each of these examples makes a significant point within our current holdings, extending and improving the Fitzwilliam's Collections. We are very pleased that Denis' memory will be preserved in permanence at the Fitzwilliam." John Roles, Head of Museums and Galleries, Leeds City Council says: “This is another significant step in restoring the original contents of Temple Newsam House. In 1922 the contents of the house were dispersed or sold before the estate was purchased by the city of Leeds. Over the following decades as the house has gradually been restored to its former glory, many of the original contents have been repatriated to the house which now contains one of the most important collections of decorative and fine arts in the country. There are now over 400 paintings on show in the house half of which originated there. The Pier Francesco Mola work is an important addition as it was listed as hanging in the Picture Gallery in the 1808 house inventory so we are particularly pleased that Sir Denis was willing to allow the painting to return to its original home, initially on loan and now as a permanent bequest.”