Blog


17th July 2018

Great to be a part of this diverse international exhibition with some great artists.





26th June 2018

Just posted work to Art Spot Korin in Kyoto for a group exhibition of which my part starts on 17th July. See more on 'work' page.


4th May 2018

Finalising my work for the Art Spot Korin exhibition and also a factor in what I send is, will it get through customs and how expensive will it be to post?


26th March 2018

Arctic Norway. The scenery this far north is beautiful and almost surreal but as you can see from the image below this, the weather can be so unpredictable and change in minutes. We are now more northern than Hammerfest, which is classified as the northernmost 'town' in the world.







23rd March 2018

Tromso here is stunning from the top of the cable car. You can see for miles in every direction and apparently this is a great place to watch the Northern Lights.




22nd March 2018

Flying off to Tromso in northern Norway today via Oslo, we will be right inside the Arctic circle the whole time. Looking forward to the adventure.


5th December 2017

Finally started a new painting. It may develop into a series of 'plastic portraits'.
Painting not yet finished.


 
8th November 2017

I've been experimenting with photographing plastic and I'm viewing this as pre-painting research. A painting will possibly follow in the near future, just not sure exactly what yet!




Interesting how something so damaging floating in the wind can look so organic.


9th October2017

Travelled by bullet train and ferry and visited Naoshima and Teshima. Amazing art islands a little further south in Japan. No photos of the architecture allowed and probably none would do it justice but i sneaked this view upwards of the sky out of the specially designed open space. Just sitting in the seat below was actually so peaceful and serene. The Japanese have museums sussed, no phones or cameras allowed and only a max number of people in certain areas at once. The spaces can really, truly be appreciated this way.

Naoshima Art Museum





Teshima Art Museum (web images)









I can definitely say without a doubt that Teshima Art Museum was the best place I have ever visited!

That is a big statement, however, it was the whole unfolding experience that got me. You arrive by ferry, climb a hillside that is so beautiful with just the best view from the top. It is built on the corner of a rice terrace. Everything is natural, trees around and overhead as you wind your way on a simple cement path enjoying the view until you see this large organic cement structure with nature allowed in. The egg shaped structure is so pleasing to the eye it looks more like a UFO than a museum but is actually based on a water droplet. A total revelation, both weird and wonderful in this hillside setting. Even calling it a museum doesn't fit the bill. I would describe it as a peaceful, contemplative interactive experience that you won't forget.

This was my experience. Everyone will see it differently and some may not even like it.

You leave you phone, camera and shoes and enter in your bare feet knowing nothing of what you are entering. There is also no talking. It totally affects all your senses. With the heat outside your bare feet on the smooth concrete feel amazing as does the welcome cool to your body. Visually it is stunning, like no other place I have ever visited. No pillars or posts to hinder your view. The beautiful blue of the sky through the ceiling. A slight breeze comes through the massive egg shaped hole in the side of the structure and ruffles the single ribbon suspended there.

Then you notice everyone is looking downwards and watching the floor intently. This is because the floor has been specially and extremely well designed to allow droplets of water to come out of hidden  holes in it and travel large distances across the floor, as it is very slightly lower, to eventually go down other holes while making a subtle almost musical echoing noise.

As the water gathers in certain areas it flows like a mini stream or river and just enchants the people watching. You can move as close or as far as you want to the different areas and if you happen to go whilst it is raining I'm sure you would have a different experience altogether. You can't rush this experience, you just want to sit and stare and many people do. Everyone takes their time. The architecture is stunning, unusual and unexpected but really the star of the show here is nature. Yes, even inside this cement structure, water and the way it moves is the highlight. Never have I been so entranced by watching water. Perhaps as the sea side when you watch the waves lap and the foam move over the sand but taking water out of it's natural environment makes you look harder and it makes it behave more unusually especially on the concrete. I felt like I did not want to leave this cocoon of serenity where the outside world did not feature. The architect, Ryue Nishizawa and the artist Rei Naito should be very proud of this space they have created.

Even the cafe was stunning! Minimalism at its best.
 



5th October 2017

Tried to pack so many things into my visit to Kyoto and saw many Zen gardens, temples and shrines. This is Ginkakuji Temple and gardens. There is a lovely higher walk in the trees overlooking the gardens. No stones out of place here!






3rd October 2017

Had a great opening tonight with some traditional Japanese food. Many thanks to gallery Director Kaname and his wife Yoriko Matsumra for inviting me to exhibit and for their hospitality.


2nd October 2017

Art Spot Korin is a lovely gallery in the old district of Kyoto. Installing the exhibition today on two floors, and the top floor has beautiful old beams. Great to have some help from Masahiro Kawanaka the curator.





The Gion district is Kyoto's geisha district with loads of restaurants and shrines. Here are some girls dressing in kimonos for a day out. I did spot a real geiko (as they call them in Kyoto) and some maikos (in training) one evening rushing to engagements.


30th September 2017




Arrived in Tokyo and already I am loving the vibe in this city. Here is an example of box living. This is Nakagin Capsule Tower, Ginza 1972, an amazing piece of architecture. The original 'capsule building'.




29th September 2017

Heading off to Tokyo and on to Kyoto for my exhibition and afterwards a little travelling. Will post some images later.


29th July 2017

Putting some finishing touches to the video work I'm taking over the Kyoto and checking it works on the new projector I'm taking. They have one at the gallery already but I need two for the exhibition so I can have video both in the lower and upper galleries.


12th July 2017

Experimenting with canvas outdoors and making art outdoors. Here trying some rock printing with inks directly onto the canvas.




10th June 2017

I've been making more and more ceramic stones. Luckily the more I make, the slightly better I get at it each time.




10th May 2017

Printmaking at Dundee Contemporary Arts has become a new interest, and I am sure that some of the work I'm doing now will be in my next exhibition. There are so many techniques to learn and I have mainly been screen printing and photo etching so far, but it is quite addictive!




5th April 2017

I am happy to now be a part of Lateral Lab Ltd, a charitable arts trust, and have taken on the role of Treasurer too.


20th March 2017

The Hope Scott Trust have just awarded me a grant to help with my exhibition in Japan and I will also now be going out to install it and for the opening so really looking forward to that.


1st February 2017

I will be having an exhibition at Art Spot Korin, in Kyoto, Japan from 3rd October - 22nd October this year, so lots to do over the next few months!


14th December 2016

I have been lucky enough to have time over the last few months to experiment in the studio with a view to making new work for a future solo exhibition. This has resulted in a move towards making. Using found natural materials such as the Pappus from the Creeping Thistle plant I have been constructing an 'indoor landscape' with the Pappus and muslin cloth.







20th March 2016

 
      

    


I have just returned from my second research trip to Iceland. I got the chance to be in and on some of the earth's most amazing natural spaces. I experienced two of the most interesting and wild black sand beaches at Jokulsarlon and Reynishverfi. The glaciers are incredibly beautiful but sadly as our guide explained, receding up the mountain year by year, as can be seen here in the bottom right image.



28th February 2016





I have been awarded a FCAC visual artist's grant to create a new body of work over the next year, so I am looking forward to experimenting and taking my work in a new direction and moving forward from painting.


14th January 2016

 



The late Robert Callender's work is exhibited really well in the A2B publication. This retrospective collection contains a number of pieces. Among them, prints, and a film about his work, which shows the time involved collecting and creating as well as his inherent connection to the sea and the natural environment. I certainly find the art of making so important and have found it to be quite a cathartic process.


16th September 2015



Moving into the Sea Loft Studio in Kinghorn today. This is the converted cinema overlooking the beach in Kinghorn where Elizabeth Ogilvie lives and works.  Looking forward to working where light and space are in abundance and connecting with other artists locally and internationally.


29th July 2015

     


                


As an installation assistant to the New York artist Tara Donovan, I was helping to
install her exhibit in the ballroom in Bonnington House at Jupiter Artland. This was part of the Edinburgh International Festival and was also her first time exhibiting in the UK. It was extremely hard work, my knees are still sore! It was interesting to see how to put together something intricate but on a large scale.

http://www.theguardian.com/stage/2015/aug/02/edinburgh-art-festival-2015-review-great-year-for-sculpture



11th July 2015



Just attended the opening of the Fire Station Creative in Dunfermline last night. It has an interesting new exhibition space with some good studio spaces above. Ian Moir has done an amazing job getting this off the ground in Fife and John Byrne was there to open it.



22nd May 2015



I've been doing a lot of video work and photography at the moment. Some other worldly images coming out of this exploration.



30th January 2015

There is some of my work in the Quay gallery in Aberdour just now. It has just re-opened after a winter break.






5th December 2014

I have work in the PVAF exhibition 'Endings' , opening tonight. Come along to Strathearn Artspace, Crieff and see a mix of work. On until 23rd January 2015.



1st December, 2014

New painting of inside an ice tunnel, inspired by my trip to Iceland.  Interior natural spaces fascinate me and you do feel closer to the earth in these extreme natural environments.





Glacier ice tunnel, Solheimajokull. (oil on canvas)