Category Archives: Art

Art in Europe, from street art to art museums.

Hidden Gems at City Art Centre Edinburgh

The Hidden Gems exhibition at Edinburgh’s City Art features some less well known pieces. Its’s free to enter and the exhibition runs until 13 May 2018.

Below are my favourites at the Hidden Gems show.

The first three are tapestries.

Relief (739) by Louise Hopkins

Cockerel by Archie Brennan

El Greco by Alice Hannigan

I liked the bold white outline of the head in the piece below.

Head of a Woman by Anthony Hatwell

I’ve seen many sculptures by Henry Moore, by not many paintings.

Upright Motives by Henry Moore

I was interested in the two screen prints below, as I have been attending screen printing evening classes at my local college.

The Romance of the Civil Service by R B Kitaj

Seated Figure by Frank Auerbach

Mixed media on canvas was used to create the piece below.

Vainish I by William Dick

Aberdeenshire Landscape by David Morrison Buyers

The Sou’Westers, Arbroath by Morris Grassie

This Stoney Rubbish, The Son of Man by William Crosbie

Visiting the Dovecoat Studios in Edinburgh

If you are interested in art, especially textiles, I recommend a visit to the Dovecoat Studios in Edinburgh. They are located in Infirmary Street, around a ten minute walk from Waverley Railway Station. The building was formerly a public baths.

I loved the installation in the stairwell.

There’s a viewing gallery where you can look down on the works in progress in the weaving studio. There’s also information on various commissions on the walls of the viewing gallery.

There’s usually an exhibition. When I visited it was Daughers of Penelope, which showcased the work of female weavers and artists. There’s also a cafe at the Dovecoat Studios.

Carmen Thyssen Museum Malaga Spain

In the Spanish city of Malaga, most museums are free to enter on Sunday in the late afternoon/evening. I was torn between the Picasso Museum and the Carmen Thyssen. Both museums were free from 5pm, the Picasso closed at 7pm and the Carmen Thyssen at 8pm. I’d been warned that I might have to queue for more than 30 minutes to get into either museum. As I didn’t want to stand in queues for more than one hour, I decided to stick to one, the Carmen Thyssen, in order to see the work of a variety of Spanish artists.

I had to queue for 40 minutes to get into the Carmen Thyssen. It appeared that the staff were only permitting a few visitors to enter every few minutes.

Below are some of my favourites pieces from the permanent collection at the Carmen Thyssen.

Carmen en Malaga by Mercedes Lasarte

Landscape at Hernrn by Dario do Regoyos

Avila by Aureliano de Beruete y Moret

Seascape: View of the Bay of Palma de Mallorca by Antonio Munoz Degrain

Rocks at Javea and the White Boat by Joaquin Sorolla y Bastida

Flamenco Dance by Ricard Canals i Llambi

Valencians by Julia Vila y Prades

Cattle Fair at Salamanca by Franscisco Iturrino

Composition Nude by Celso Lagar

The Baths at Seville by Francesco Iturrino

I could see similarities between some of the pieces at the Carmen Thyssen and paintings by the Scottish Colourist John Fergusson, one of which you can see below.

At My Studio Window at the Fergusson Gallery in Perth, Scotland

Landscape at Dusk with Denatzaris by Valentin de Zubiaurre

I had read that the Carment Thyssen had a roof terrace, so went out there to have a seat and a break.

Even if you are not into art, it’s worth visiting the Carmen Thyssen on a Sunday evening to sit on the terrace, between the flowers and under the huge bell tower.

The Port of Malaga by Manuel Barron y Carillo

Atrium of St Paula Convent by Manyuel Garcia Rodriguez

The Cordoba Fair by Julio Romero de Torres

Courting Spanish Style by Jose Garcia Ramos

Dance for the Priest by Juan Garcia Ramos

I happily spent two hours at the Carmen Thyssen and left feeling vindicated in the choice to focus on one free museum.

A Fine Line at the City Art Centre Edinburgh

You can see A Fine Line at the City Art Centre Edinburgh until 18 February 2018. The exhibition features the work of four contemporary artists who all currently live and work in Scotland.

The exhibition was right up my street, as it questioned the line between art and craft. I don’t think that there is one.

I really liked Lizzie Farey’s willow sculptures.


Frances’ Priests pottery was intricate and colourful.

I was also a fan of Angie Lewin’s work which consisted of engraving, paintings and screen and lino printing.

Bronwen Sleigh’s work is inspired by industrial architecture and urban landscapes.

You need to check the opening hours when planning a visit the City Art Centre in Edinburgh. At present, it is shut on Mondays and Tuesdays and opening hours vary on different days.

Music from the Balconies – Ed Ruscha and Los Angeles

The Music from the Balconies – Ed Ruscha and Los Angeles exhibition runs until 29 April 2018 in Modern One at the Scottish National Gallery for Modern Art in Edinburgh.

Below are photos of some pieces featured in the show.

It’s free to enter the Music from the Balconies – Ed Ruscha and Los Angeles exhibition. The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh is open every day from 10am to 5pm.

Visiting the Museu Nacional de Soares dos Reis in Porto

I visited the Museu Nacional de Soares dos Reis in Porto on a Sunday when I thought that it was free to enter. It was rather embarassing as when I sauntered in, a member of staff came after me saying that I had to pay an admission fee. I turned out that free admission is only on the first Sunday of the month.

As I had a Porto Card, I received a 50% discount on the standard adult charge of 5 Euro.

I went out to the museum’s garden upon arrival. There was beautiful blue tiling on the walls and some outdoor seating for cafe customers.

I would’ve liked to sit in the garden for a few minutes, but In the upper part of the garden there was only one bench which was in the sun.

Below is a selection of my favourites at the Museu Nacional de Soares dos Reis.

The Yellow Skirt by Joaquin Lopes

Boats to Dischare into the River Douro by Joaquin Lopes

D Maria Bridge View of the City of Porto by Eduardo Viana

Old Porto by Dordio Gomes

Mother and Daughter by Sarah Alfonso

Lisbon by Joao Hogan

View of Portalegre by Miguel de Cantaloupe Barrias

Meditation by Manuel D’Assmupcao

Girls by Antonio Quadros

Self Portrait by Jose Tagarro

Baiser by Ernesto Canto Da Maya

Decorative Arts section

View to garden from landing

There were a lot of paintings that were too traditional and dark for my personal taste at Museu Nacional de Soares dos Reis. I most enjoyed some of the more contemporary pieces.

The Scottish Colourists at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum Glasgow

There’s a permanent exhibition of the works of the Scottish Colourists at Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum in Glasgow.

Here are photos of some of my favourite paintings.

Still Life – White Roses by Peploe

Interior – The Orange Blind by Cadell

Roses by Peploe

Barra by Peploe

A Lady in Black by Cadell

The Pink Parasol by Fergusson

Lady in White by Peploe

Torso of a Woman by Fergusson