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I'm an arts journalist & PR consultant living and working in Scotland. I've been a journalist for more than 25 years. I write a regular column for Scottish quality newspaper, The Herald. I deliver a PR service with an arty bent and work on a consultancy basis with arts organisations, including Scotland's leading creative industries festival, XpoNorth & broadcast support body, ScreenHI. I am currently co-writing a book about the celebrated Scots artist, George Wyllie, with his daughter Louise. Instrumental in making a celebration of his life's work happen in 2012. For more information, see www.georgewyllie.com When I'm not being a mum/working, I talk to my dog. He laps it up. Contact me on janpatience@me.com (All work © Jan Patience)

Monday, 21 February 2011

Gallery Round-up (published in The Herald 19/2/11)

From top: Great Western Road (etching) by Philip Reeves at Gerber Fine Art, Glasgow
Beach Walk, Ostell Bay by Stuart Herd @ Tighnabruaich Gallery in Argyll
Picking Fruit, Cisternimo by Glen Scouller at Portland Gallery, London

(This is an unedited version of the Gallery round-up which I wrote for The Herald arts supplement on Saturday past)

Philip Reeves: Early Prints, Drawings & Paintings 1949-1959
Cyril Gerber Fine Art, 148 West Regent St, Glasgow
0141 221 3095
Until March 10

One of the most eminent and influential printmakers working in Scotland today, Philip Reeves has influenced generations of artists since he arrived in Glasgow in 1954 with his groundbreaking approach to his craft.
Born in Cheltenham in 1931, Reeves studied at the Royal College of Art in London, where he was introduced to the work of Eric Ravilious, Paul Nash and Edward Bawden.
At Glasgow School of Art, he set up a specialised printmaking department, separating it from the commercial graphic art side of the school and bringing it into the fine art department of painting and drawing.
From the late 1960s on, with help from the Scottish Arts Council, Reeves was the driving force behind the Edinburgh and Glasgow print studios.
Reeves is best known today for his abstract prints and collages but this exhibition gives a fascinating insight into his early work and influences.
From 1949-1959, as a teacher in Cheltenham, London and Glasgow, he had access to etching plates and printing presses. He would then use the drawings and notes made while exploring in the Wiltshire Downs, Gloucestershire and Glasgow, to create a suite of etchings.
During this period, the concept of the printmaking studio did not really exist and the creative and experimental work of Stanley Hayter in Paris and New York with use of colour and scale, had yet to come.
The drawings, paintings, etchings and lithographs in this exhibition, including 45 rare artists’ proofs, have all lain tucked away in Reeves’ studio for many years. A fascinating insight into the early work of a master.

Argyll Artists: New Works from the West Coast
Tighnabruaich Gallery, Tighnabruaich, Argyll
01700 811681
Until March 18

Husband and wife team Penny and Andrew Graham-Weall have operated this little gallery in the Argyll village of Tighnabruaich for the last three years, building up an impressive portfolio of established and emerging artists in the process.
I was introduced to the gallery by the artist Heather Nevay, who has a house nearby and who (when now having sell-out shows in London) occasionally shows work there. What I picked up is a welcoming air about it which obviously comes from the owners’ relaxed approach.
Heading into spring, the Tighnabruaich Gallery has put together an unusual mix of work from artists across Argyll. Penny says: “From Jolomo in Tayvallich to Ruth Robertson on Bute, we are spoiled for choice when it comes to talented artists living here. This exhibition is full of diverse and contrasting styles of work. 
“I’d say the most impactful are possibly the stunning simplicity of the figurative sketches by Sandi Anderson. In contrast are Lesley Burr’s contemplative pastels and the more traditional landscapes from Gillian Goodheir and Stuart Herd. Ardentinny artists feature too with some very lovely fresh watercolours by Freda Waldapfel and a whole new host of magical quasi ecclesiastical ceramic figures from Bill Williamson.”
There are over 20 artists on show in Tighnabruaich for the next month and it’s worth making taking a trip off the beaten track to take in the art along with the bracing sea air. You’re sure of a friendly welcome from Penny and her resident Tibetan terrier. 

Glen Scouller

Portland Gallery, 8 Bennet Street, London

www.portlandgallery.com and www.glenscouller.co.uk

020 7493 1888

Until March 11

As he writes in the catalogue which accompanies his latest exhibition at London’s Portland Gallery, Glen Scouller quotes Cezanne’s decree that ‘painting is not copying from from the object, it is realising one’s sensations’.
Every one of the 50 oil paintings and watercolours on show in this exhibition exudes a very definite sense of time and place. But there is more to them than that. There is warmth, light, just-so colour, an economy of line and a beautiful sense of space in every single painting Scouller creates.
This fine painter artist draws inspiration from the surroundings he finds himself at any given time, be it on his studio floor, on a hot day in Port Vendres, France or in the frozen fields near his home in Ayrshire in the depths of winter.
Scouller always paints directly from life which allows greater spontaneity and still provides him with an excitement that is evident from looking at his work.
There is an assurance in his handling of paint and a relaxed, seemingly effortless approach to composition which conveys to the viewer a feeling of being inside the canvas, rather than looking in.
A couple of large works in this collection have scary-looking prices around the £17,000 mark, but most of the paintings for sale are around £2,250-£7,500. If you were looking to invest in one of Scotland’s most collectable contemporary artists, and own a painting which will warm you up day in, day out in all weathers, this is the way to go.

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