Category Archives: Scotland

What to do in Scotland; attractions in Scotland and the best places to visit in Scotland.

Add It Up Exhibition by Jac Leirner at Fruitmarket Gallery Edinburgh

The Add It Up exhibition featuring the work of Brazilian artist Jac Leirner runs until 22 October at the Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh.

Much of Leirner’s work is constructed of everyday objects. Below are my favourite pieces in the exhibition.

Leveled Spirit consists of 38 spirit levels.

Blue Phase is made of 50.000 obsolete Brazilian bank notes, which are threaded together.

Metal, Wood and Black consists of rulers.

My photo of Little Light, which contains more than two miles of copper wire with a light bulb at one end, doesn’t really do justice to the installation. The patterns and reflections on the copper wire are much more evident in real life.

120 Cords is very colourful.

On the ground floor of the Fruitmarket Gallery, there are also some watercolours by Jan Leirner.

On the first floor, there are several pieces made with the products of Leirner’s former smoking and drug taking habits. The three narrow pieces pictured below are made of rolling papers and their packaging.

Below is my favourite of three Crossing Colours works.

A Sense of Place: 20th Century Scottish Painting at the McManus Galleries Dundee

15′A Sense of Place :20th Century Scottish Painting‘ runs until Autumn 2017 at the McManus Galleries in Dundee.

The exhibition features works by Scottish artists, predominantly of landscapes.

Below are photos of my favourite works in the exhibition.

The Lovers by John Bellamy

Island by James Howie 

Loch Tulla by John MacLauchan Milne 

Rain on Princes Street by Stanley Cursiter 

Mediterranean Hill Town by William McCance

Ode to the North Wind by William Johnstone

St Tropez by John MacLauchan Milne 

A Lowland Church by J D Fergusson

A Cottage in Fife by George Leslie Hunter 

Terraced Fields Gran Canaria by Anne Redpath

Denhead Farm by James Morrison

Green and Blue Boats by Joan Eardley

Skye Fisherman – In Memoriam by Will MacLean 

Window on the Sea by Ian Fleming

Outside the Garden by Ronald Forbes

Full of the Warm South by J D Fergusson

It’s free to enter the ‘A Sense of Place: 20th Century Scottish Painting’ exhibition. McManus Galleries are open Monday to Saturday 10am to 5pm, and Sunday from 12.30pm to 4.30pm.

Review of the Angus Hotel Blairgowrie

I stayed at the Angus Hotel in Blairgowrie, Perthshire in Scotland, on a Friday night in late May 2017. I was looking for the cheapest room that was located fairly close to Alyth, where I was attending an arts and crafts festival that weekend.

I started off searching on the HotelsCombined price comparison website. I found a single room at the Angus Hotel costing around £41, including breakfast, on several hotel booking websites. As I had an 11% discount voucher for Hotel.com, I booked through them, paying £37.

The hotel looks quite traditional from the front. But the majority of the rooms are in more modern buildings at the rear.

There is free parking in front to the hotel. But there were no spaces left. However I found a space at the nearby free public car park.

It was 27 degrees Celsius when I checked-in at the Blairgowrie around 5pm.  My single room felt so hot. I opened all the windows wide. That didn’t seem to make much difference to the temperature in the room.

Then I discovered that the radiator in the bedroom was on. I had a fiddle with it, but there wasn’t an obvious knob to turn, as there was on the bathroom radiator (which was off). On my way down to reception to report the radiator, I spoke with anther guest, who had informed reception that radiators in the corridor where on. Evidently, that guest had been told that there was no way to switch them off. I came to the conclusion that some of the radiators must be on the same pipe system as the hot water system. As there was  a queue at reception and I wanted to go for a walk along the River Ericht, I didn’t bother reporting the fault then. But, I did mention the hot radiator to the receptionist when I checked out.

 

I took the duvet out of its cover. I was warm enough during night with only the duvet cover.The bed was firm and comfortable.

My room overlooked the courtyard. I thought that it might be quite noisy until late. But there was no noise after 10pm. However, with all the windows wide open, I could hear traffic noise all night. I could hear every move made by the guest(s) in the room above, as the floor was really creaky.

I was pleasantly surprised by the size of the bathroom and the fact that it had two windows. Many hotel bathrooms have no natural light. The bath was a good size.

I didn’t try the hotel WiFi, as my mobile broadband signal was good, and I spent very little time online.

There was no fresh fruit for breakfast, only tinned mandarin, and grapefruit, and prunes. The yoghurt in glasses with various jam like fruit at the bottom was good. The cooked breakfast was buffet style. I didn’t like the look of the bacon and sausages, I stuck to mushroom, tomato and fried eggs. Tea or coffee and toast is served to your table.

In summary, I think that I may have enjoyed my stay at the Angus Hotel in Blairgowrie during cooler weather. My room would have been a more comfortable temperature and I wouldn’t have heard so much road noise if the windows had been closed. However there would have still been the issue of noise from the room above and the not too great breakfast.

Click here to check prices and availability at the Angus Hotel Blairgowrie.

The 2017 Degree Show at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design Dundee

The Degree Show at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee runs until Sunday 28 May 2017. If at possible, you should get to Dundee to see this fabulous show.

I didn’t have the energy to get round the whole show, as I’d been at the McManus Galleries and Dundee Contemporary Arts earlier that day.

Below are photos of some of my favourites from Fine Arts and Jewellery sections at the 2017 Degree Show at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design.

In the Jewellery section, I thought that the name Zydrune Auksoriute (her work in pictured below) sounded familiar. I checked on Europe a la Carte. Sure enough she was the artist whom I stumbled upon in the Howff Cemetery in Dundee in 2014.

Zydrune hadn’t modelled her own jewellery, but I spotted her (on left) modelling for Jenny Gillies.

 

Unfortunately, photography wasn’t allowed in the textiles section. I was dazzled by the colours, patterns and textures of the various textiles.

I hope that my photos have enticed you to visit the 2017 Degree Show at the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design in Dundee.

Poppies by Max Brand and Joanne Robertson at the Gallery of Modern Art Glasgow

The Poppies exhibition, by artists Max Brand and Joannne Robertson, is on at the Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow until 11 June 2017. This debut collaboration features paintings, sculptures and a musical work from Berlin based Brand and London based Robertson.

I wasn’t too keen on various clothes rails around the exhibition. Clothes installations seems to be popular at the moment. I saw one at the Louise Bourgeois exhibition at the Switch House at the Tate Modern in London last Summer, and another recently in which all the walls of a room were hung with clothes at the Centre Pompidou in Malaga during my recent visit to the Spanish city.

I did like the vivid colours of the wall hung canvases and the floor and wall murals in the Poppies exhibition.

I spotted some carrier bags in the materials used to construct the sculptures.

My favourite part of the Poppies exhibition at the Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow were the window decorations.

There were also some painted sheets suspended from the ceiling.

I have thought about doing painting some murals on the walls at home. I suppose that if I used pastels, it wouldn’t be too hard to wash the mural off the wall, if it didn’t turn out successfully.

The Gallery of Modern Art in Glasgow is free to enter, It’s open seven days a week. But check the opening hours before visiting. I almost got caught out visiting on Sunday morning, as I assumed that the Gallery would open at 10am, but it’s 11am on Sundays and Fridays. Closing time is 5pm, except on Thursdays, when it’s 8pm.

Mark by Mark Wallinger at the Fruitmarket Gallery Edinburgh

Mark by Mark Wallinger is on at the Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh until 4 June 2017. The Fruitmarket Galley is located in Market Street, close to the southern pedestrian exit of Waverley railway station. It’s free to enter and the gallery is open seven days a week, Monday to Saturday 11am to 6pm and Sunday 11am to 5pm.

On the ground floor is the According to Mark installation featuring 100 chairs. Attached to each the chairs is a thread. All the threads converge at a central point on the wall at the front of the installation.

Self Portraits alludes to how all of us can act very differently in various environments and situations.

I am Innocent is a revolving double sided reproduction of Velazquez’s portrait of Pope Innocent X.

Wallinger used his own hands in Ego.

Four of Wallinger’s 66 id Paintings are on display.

Below is id Panting 44.

Below is id Painring 50.

The other part of the Mark by Mark Wallinger exhibition is on at Dundee Contemporary Arts, until 4 June 2017.

Now Exhibition at Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art Edinburgh

The first part of the three year long NOW exhibition is on at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art until 24 September 2017.

A fair part of the exhibition consists of work by the Glaswegian artist Nathan Coley.

It was a bit alarming to see smoke coming for the recently opened Switch House in Coley’s ‘Tate Modern on Fire’.

Another iconic London landmark is featured in Coley’s ‘Paul’

The rear of ‘Paul’ reminded me of a dolls house.

Coley’s installation ‘The Lamp of Sacrifice, 286 Places of Worship’ features cardboard models of all the places of worship in Edinburgh listed in 2004.

I loved the texture and colour of the moon in Jock McFadyen’s ‘Calton Hill’.

In the same room Peter Doig’s ‘Milky Way’ is on display.

Another piece which caught my eye was ‘State’ by Louise Hopkins.

China Red Buffet Restaurant in New Market Road Edinburgh

We had lunch at the China Red buffet restaurant in New Market Road,next to the Corn Exchange in Edinburgh, on a Sunday. We’d eaten at the other China Red in Grindlay Street, next to the Usher Hall, on several occasions.

I was keen to try the New Market Road branch as it advertised a double decker rotational food belt. The opportunity to eat at this restaurant to came when I attended the Edinburgh Art Fair in the adjacent Corn Exchange.

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The portion sizes were small, which was good if you wanted to try something. The resultant large pile of empty serving dished on the table made me feel greedy. It was a bit frustrating waiting for some dish to do the round if you happened to be chatting when it first passed by.

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Most of the dishes which I tried were good. Some of the dishes were lukewarm, as opposed to hot. I mainly stuck to fish dishes, predominantly prawns and salmon. We regularly eat chicken at home, so I try to eat different things when I am eating out. I tried some lamb which wasn’t great.

The only dish that you had to get up from the table to fetch was ice cream.

It costs £15 per adult to eat at the China Red buffet restaurant in New Market Street on Sunday from noon to 10pm. I had a 10% discount voucher, so paid £27 for two diners.

I prefer the more traditional buffet lay out of China Red in Grindlay Sreet, where you go over to the counter to select food. Also the Grindlay Street restaurant is in the city centre; I’m much more likely to be around there than out at the Corn Exchange.

Karla Black Sculptures at the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art Edinburgh

When I was in Edinburgh in late November 2016, I visited the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art. I had limited time to spend at the gallery, so I decided to stick to one exhibition Karla Black and Kishio Suga | A New Order.

I much preferred the pieces by Karla Black, a Scottish artist based in Glasgow.

My favourite was an installation featuring ‘Can’t Regard’ (made of pastel panels) and ‘Recognises’ (made of cellophane and paint.

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Below are some further sculptures by Karla Black which I liked,

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‘Couldn’t Want’

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‘Invite Often’

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‘Other Civil Words’

The Karla Black and Kishio Suga | A New Order exhibition runs until 19 February 2017 at the Scottish Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh. Admission is free of charge. The gallery is open every day from 10am – 5pm.

Street of Light Edinburgh

The Street of Light performance in George Street in Edinburgh runs every evening at 6pm and 8pm until 24 December 2016.

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The event is free to attend, but you need to book tickets in advance. Even if you don’t get a ticket you can see the show from the pavement on either side.

Street of Light Edinburgh

For some reason, I thought that there was live music from a choir at the Street of Light. But it’s a playback of recorded music.

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You need to wear warm clothing as George Street can be a bit of a wind tunnel. I had on double trousers, a jacket with fleece lining, gloves and an insulated hat with my hood up and I was just warm enough.

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There are also some pretty light projections on buildings on George Street.

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