Work of leading Scottish artists brought together for first time in new Edinburgh exhibition

Work by some of Scotland's best-known artists and photographers will be brought together for the first time in a major new exhibition in Edinburgh.

Morris Grassie's 1957 painting The Sou'Westers, Arbroath is part of the new exhibition. Picture: Antonia Reeve
Morris Grassie's 1957 painting The Sou'Westers, Arbroath is part of the new exhibition. Picture: Antonia Reeve

Peter Howson, David Eustace, Rachel Maclean, Alison Watt and Ian Hamilton Finlay will all be celebrated in a new show drawn from new acquisitions for the City Art Centre over the last decade.

More than 50 paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and sculptures secured thanks to a bequest dating back to the 1960s will be going on display, some for the first time ever, at the city council-run gallery from Saturday.

David Eustace’s images of the Isle of Harris, Rachel Maclean’s Brexit-inspired work, urban landscape drawings by Kate Downie, paintings by Edwin G Lucas and work by sculptor Anthony Hatwell are among the highlights of the exhibition, Incoming, which runs until 28 May.

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    Photographer David Eustace is among those showcased in the exhibition.

    Also included will be a rare portrait bust by the early 20th century sculptor Thomas Good, scenes of 1960s Edinburgh captured by photographer Robert Blomfield and etchings, screenprints, woodcuts and cyanotypes by contemporary printmakers including Ade Adesina, Carol Rhodes, Nicola Murray and Graeme Todd.

    Other artists featured include Morris Grassie, James Lumsden, Flannery O’kafka, Robert Powell and Anupa Gardner.

    All of the work going on display in the show, admission to which is free of charge, is drawn from the gallery’s 5000-strong fine art collection, which includes work going as far back as the 17th century.

    It is regularly added to thanks to a bequest from Jean Fletcher Watson, which has helped pay for more than 900 acquisitions since 1961.

    Artist Kate Downie is among those whose work is being celebrated.

    Dr Helen Scott, curator at the Market Street gallery, which reopened in May after the lifting of lockdown restrictions, said: “Over the last 18 months the Covid-19 pandemic has made it really difficult to get out and enjoy art.

    "As we gradually welcome visitors back to the City Art Centre, this is a brilliant opportunity to show them something new.

    "The majority of the artworks featured in this exhibition are going on display for the first time, so it’s a tremendously exciting moment.

    "Over the past decade we’ve developed the collection in several directions, and introduced many more new artists.”

    Autumn Repeat, by Nicola Murray.

    Downie said: “It’s such an honour to have two historic and one new work entering the collection of the City Art Centre.

    "It holds one of the most diverse yet accessible art collections in Scotland today.”

    Eustace said: “The real vision of any collection goes beyond the immediate audience who may witness it.

    "I’m sure one day folk yet to be born will thank Edinburgh’s City Art Centre for having the vision to give artists of a time past the support and platform for their work. That is this and any collection’s greatest value.”

    Donald Wilson, culture convener at the city council, said: “With a diverse mix including many more contemporary pieces, this collection celebrates Scotland’s continued artistic and cultural heritage that is celebrated around the world. I encourage everyone to take advantage of this opportunity see Edinburgh's art collection and view works by some of Scotland's most famous artists.”


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