Art: Moira Jeffrey reports from the Venice Biennale

The urgency that marked the 2015 Biennale has given way to introspection in 2017. But outside the main exhibitions and central pavilion, curated by Christine Macel, global issues do push their way to the fore

Spite Your Face by Rachel Maclean was commissioned by Alchemy Film & Arts for Scotland + Venice.

Art review: Rachel Maclean - Spite Your Face

In Rachel Maclean’s new morality tale, “the only way out is up”. And the only way up is… not very pleasant. If there seemed a possibility that the 29 year-old artist, who trained at Edinburgh College of Art, might rein in her scabrous satire and dark humour for the prestigious setting of the Scottish presentation at the Venice Biennale then the good news is that unlike Pic, the urchin anti-hero of her retelling of the Pinocchio story, Maclean is singularly unwilling to compromise. Maclean’s new film, Spite Your Face, which will return to Edinburgh’s Talbot Rice Gallery in 2018, is a riot of gold and Renaissance blue, with an aesthetic that falls somewhere between Titian and Trump Tower. It is shown as a vast 8m high vertical projection in a deconsecrated church on a quiet canalside in the Cannaregio area of Venice.

Detail from Pool #2, 1968 by Ed Ruscha at the 
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art 
� Ed Ruscha

Art reviews: Ed Ruscha | Duncan Shanks

Ed Ruscha’s sun-drenched images reveal the fault lines running through Los Angeles, capital of failed dreams

Pictures exhibited as part of the gallery's 175th anniversary show. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Christina Jansen: Scottish Gallery founder gave a leg up to art

When The Scottish ­Gallery’s founder, Aitken Dott, opened the business in 1842, he had no idea what treasures would pass through his doors.

Artist impression of a statue of a five metre high bear.

Picture; Deadline

Andy Scott to erect John Muir ‘bear’ statue in Dunbar

THE Scots artist who wowed the world with The Kelpies is now planning to erect a statue of a five metre high bear.

News 9
Vice Admiral Sir Roddy Macdonald, World War II veteran, painter and Chief of the Skye Highland Games, pictured 'in action' outside his studio at Braes, Isle of Skye.

Admiral’s Skye cottage becomes new island berth for artists

A cottage on Skye where a Second World War veteran sailor retired to paint will tomorrow be officially opened as an artists’ residence. Vice Admiral Sir Roddy Macdonald’s former home near Portree has been restored since his death in 2001, with the addition of two further studios in its grounds.

Inverness, Highlands & Islands
A Cock Fight, by Jan Steen circa1660-1670. Picture: The Bute Collection at Mount Stuart

Art review: The Art of Power: Masterpieces from the Bute Collection

When the third Earl of Bute was pushed out of politics, he concentrated on building a fabulous art collection. We should be grateful he did

Rachel Maclean is representing Scotland at the Venice Biennale this year

Scottish artist launches Pinocchio-inspired film at Venice Biennale

A Scottish artist has unveiled a new film based on the story of Pinocchio at the Venice Biennale. Rachel Maclean, who graduated from Edinburgh College of Art in 2009, is representing Scotland at the 57th Venice Biennale. Her film Spite Your Face transforms the Italian folk tale of the puppet that wants to be a real boy into a dark and disturbing satire of the era of fake news, Brexit and Donald Trump.

Rachel Maclean is representing Scotland at the Venice Biennale

Interview: Rachel Maclean on representing Scotland at the Venice Biennale

As Rachel Maclean prepares to represent Scotland at the Venice Biennale, the artist talks to Susan Mansfield about her new film Spite Your Face, which is inspired by the story of Pinocchio and the realities of our post-truth times

Art 2
Aaron Johnston sews the tapestry he made. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Scottish Diaspora tapestry to go on display for first time

A UNIQUE tapestry chronicling the impact of Scots throughout the world has gone on display in its entirety for the first time, after being gradually enlarged by an army of volunteers as it travelled the globe.

News 4
Touching Boulders By Hand (with trees) 2013, by Hamish Fulton

Hamish Fulton, the “walking artist” who takes only photographs and leaves only footprints

Earlier this week I did something that made absolutely no sense whatsoever – at least, when looked at from a common sense point of view. On a day when, to put it mildly, I had a fair bit on, I walked approximately 42 minutes out of my way in order to spend a further 21 minutes looking at 11 photographs of mountains with text incorporated into them – an exhibition of work by the self-styled “walking artist” Hamish Fulton at the Fine Art Society in Edinburgh.

These days, thanks to the wonders of the interweb, if I want to see beautiful pictures of mountains I need only fire up my Twitter feed and lo, many of the 1,001-odd people I’m currently following will have posted ravishing shots taken during recent adventures in the Alps, the Himalayas, the Rockies and elsewhere. They will usually add a few words of explanatory text alongside the images, too, mostly just descriptive, but sometimes funny or philosophical. All of which means that if I’m suddenly overcome by an urge to look at annotated pictures of mountains, I can do so at the swipe of a screen or the click of a mouse. So why go out of my way to see these 11 pictures in the flesh?

Rosalind Nashashibi would be the sixth graduate from Glasgow School of Art to win the Turner Prize.

Glasgow School of Art graduate up for Turner Prize

A Palestinian artist is in the running to become the sixth Glasgow School of Art graduate to win Britain’s most prestigious art prize.

Untitled from the series Coming Clean, 2004-2010, by Graham MacIndoe at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery

Art reviews: Graham MacIndoe: Coming Clean | Adrian Wiszniewski: The Night Gardener | Robbie Bushe: Invasions and Excavations

Graham MacIndoe’s extraordinary photographs create a portrait of what addiction feels like. They are raw, disturbing and important

Mine Girl was erected at the Scott Monument in the dead of night for the most romantic day of the year. Picture: PA

Mystery Mine heart sculpture reappears at City Art Centre exhibition

IT arrived mysteriously underneath the Scott Monument on Valentine’s Day – before being revealed as the ultimate act of love.

People & Places 3

Story of 92-year-old Serbian refugee to be told in animation

The story of a World War II refugee from Serbia who came to Scotland in 1947 is to be told in a new animation.

News 2
Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows, 1829, by 
John Constable at the Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh

Art review: Constable & McTaggart: A Meeting of Two Masterpieces | The Tomb: Ancient Egyptian Burial

The Scottish National Gallery’s pairing of two masterpieces – a ‘new’ Constable and McTaggart’s The Storm – is inspired and impressive

Hugh Morrison examines an 18th century shield used by Highland clansmen.

Scottish art treasures to go on display in China

Dozens of historic Scottish paintings, photographs and historic treasures have been sent more than 5,000 miles away to go on display in the heart of one of China’s leading cultural attractions.

John Byrne with Lennox Dunbar and David McCracken. Picture: Aberdeen City Council

Renowned artist John Byrne unveils new artwork in Aberdeen

JOHN Byrne has revealed a striking new limited edition print to support the fundraising campaign for the redevelopment of Aberdeen Art Gallery.

The extension to Dunfermline's Carnegie Library houses a gallery, museum and exhibition space. Picture: Contributed

Dunfermline’s Carnegie Library named building of the year

A multi-million pound extension to the world’s first Carnegie Library in Dunfermline has been named building of the year in a prestigious architectural competition.

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