Friday, April 6, 2012

Snow, sleet, hail and the brilliance of art.

 
  A beautiful day in Stockbridge. © 2012 Megan Chapman

Hello Dear Readers...

Oh what a week it has been! There was art, there was snow, sleet, hail and cold weather and most importantly there was Stewart Bremner's opening of Worlds Apart with Kevin Low at Union Gallery. Let's get started!

This past week started with a visit to a dreamy flea market at the Out of the Blue Drill Hall. As you recall I had visited the Drill Hall not that long ago for their art market event. This space is conveniently located right behind Stewart's flat. It was a joy to enter the large light filled space again. The flea market was top notch with much to look at and many lovely old things that I would buy for my home if I lived here. I appreciated that the flea market even if it did make me sad to not buy anything and more for the fact that I don't have anywhere to buy things for. This set off a flurry of ideas and discussions in my head and aloud about where I now belong since being here. Could Edinburgh be my home? Or perhaps somewhere else in the world? It certainly doesn't feel like Fayetteville is my home anymore. Big thoughts and heavy decisions for a later date, but these thoughts are swirling around my head as the days get closer to my return flight home to Arkansas.

But back to this week and what I did and saw, last Saturday was the flea market and Sunday was a visit to an outdoor market in Stockbridge. This is one of my favorite areas of Edinburgh. I like this little community next to the Waters of Leith. The market was very lovely with arts, crafts, and lots of gourmet food. We had curry from a stall for our lunch, sitting on the sidewalk in the sun by the water. It was great food and affordable, the sun was shining brightly and everyone seemed in good spirits. We also walked down the path to St. Bernard's Well and as luck would have it, the well was open! Going to see inside this well was a rare treat, such beautiful and intricate tile work on the floor and ceiling. I took many photographs on this relaxed Spring day.

Once home and inspired by the sunshine and the surroundings I decided it was time to update my artist page on facebook and start putting it to better use. If you have not already liked my facebook art page, please do! I would love to connect with you there.

We also got out to see some art even in the freak snowy sleet weather event which I absolutely loved walking in. We visited the Open Eye gallery again for their latest offerings. We were both taken with the work of Willie Rodger who had an impressive collection of woodcuts and linocuts on display in one of the front rooms. He is prolific, his art covering the walls and in racks against the wall as well. I really liked his style. It was an impressive exhibition.

We also popped into the Scottish Society of Architect Artists' Spring Exhibition that was being held in the lower level Dundas Street gallery. It was a lovely space, a rental gallery managed by the Bourne Fine Art, the gallery upstairs from the space, that I have yet to enter. The show was a mixed bag, there were a few paintings that caught my eye.

After this viewing, we went back to the Edinburgh Printmakers gallery. Their current exhibition, New Print Generation, includes the works of Patrizo Belcampo, Sarah Diver, Lyndsay Gauld, Elizabeth Hardman, Rachel Maclean and Francesca Miller. According to their brochure, "this exhibition showcased the emerging talent of recent graduates selected from across the four Scottish Art College Degree Shows." For me the stars of the exhibition were Sarah Diver and Lyndsay Gauld. I liked their work and could imagine owning some of it. The work of Rachel Maclean was beyond my scope of enjoyment and I will just leave it at that.

Besides all the markets and art this week, we also celebrated Stewart's Mother's birthday. This entailed getting a bus to a different part of town, even momentarily leaving Edinburgh. I enjoyed watching the scenery going by and seeing the snow dusted hills in the distance. We had a lovely lunch out with Stewart's Mom and Gran and then it was back on the bus. I have come a long way with my bus riding skills, actually enjoying walking on the moving bus and remembering to hold on, however I am still too shy to pay my own fare...  

All the events of this week aside, the art and the event that eclipsed all others was the opening of Stewart Bremner and Kevin Low's exhibition Worlds Apart at Union Gallery. The work was finally transported to the gallery earlier in the week and then expertly hung by owner Alison Auldjo. The show confidently opened to a packed house last night with many red dots throughout the evening. The gallery was abuzz as people came to look at Stewart and Kevin's work. It was an odd coupling that worked beautifully. The mysterious worlds created by Kevin and the dynamic and classically abstract work of Stewart's came together to create a strange but somehow obvious balance. Worlds Apart is a strong exhibition that brings works out of the dark that need to be seen. This is the work that people want, this is the work people need to see and the work that sadly seems missing from the Edinburgh art scene. It was a thrill for me to be able to see it all on the gallery walls and to see Stewart and Kevin working the room and completely in their elements. This will be one of the highlights of my visit to Edinburgh and one of the memories that make potentially living in this city seem possible and a lovely option. Good art makes me happy. Knowing good artists and being in good galleries makes me happy. Talking to people about art and meeting people that appreciate art makes me happy. All of that happened last night at Union Gallery and Worlds Apart brought it all together.

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