Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Merry Christmas!

GAIL KELLY 'Holly' linocut on Irish linen £56

Merry Christmas readers! Thank you to our customers and all our artists for making 'Impressions of Galloway...' such a successful exhibition. We loved organising this show and we're proud of of the work we have had the pleasure to exhibit. The exhibition continues until the 31st of January.

Our Christmas and New Year opening times are as follows:

25th December CLOSED
26th December CLOSED
Saturday 27th December OPEN 10am - 5pm
Sunday 28th December OPEN 12pm - 4pm
Monday 29th December OPEN 10am - 5pm
Tuesday 30th December OPEN 10am - 5pm
Wednesday 31st December OPEN 10am - 5pm
1st - 2th January CLOSED
Saturday 3rd January OPEN 10am - 5pm
Monday 5th January Open 10am - 5pm (normal opening times resume)

Friday, 19 December 2008

Flowery Thank You

Look at the lovely flowers that Glen Murray Publishing gave us for our help with the launch of the book 'Series of Dreams' by John Burns. The signed copies that we have in the gallery have been flying off the shelf.

Thanks Glen - good colour choice - they look great next to E. A. Taylor's chair in the gallery!

Thursday, 18 December 2008

New York Inspiration

Here's the link to an article on the Crafts Scotland web site about Philomena Pretsell's work from our last exhibition, and the inspiration she got from a trip to New York.

We have enjoyed living with her pots in our kitchen for years, so for Jill and I, showing an exhibition of her work was such a pleasure. We still have a small number of pieces available in the gallery including some more 'Dachsie Dishes', inspired by Philomena's Wire Haired Dachshunds.

Friday, 12 December 2008

Review ~ The Galloway News

Here's the review, published in The Galloway News yesterday, of our new exhibition, 'Impressions of Galloway Past and Present'.

Galloway in all its glory is being celebrated in a new exhibition which started this week at the McGill Duncan Gallery in Castle Douglas. As is tradition at the gallery in December, the show includes Galloway and Scottish paintings from the 19th Century onwards. This year there is a vibrant new dimension to the gallery theme, as contemporary artists have also been asked to depict their own responses to Galloway.

‘Although none of the other artists knew what the other was creating, when we started to hang the exhibition it all went together beautifully. We especially noticed the glorious Galloway colours: heathery purples, gentle greens and soft light. The exhibition has a definite colour harmony’ said ZoĆ« Blamire, one of the Gallery owners.

The brief given to artists was a broad one; as long as their work depicted Galloway it could be landscape, people, animals or places. Not surprisingly the Galloway Landscape is a source of great inspiration but the wild birds and other animals also feature highly.

SUSAN DOBSON 'Cairn Holy I' Etching £220

Some artists who don’t live in the area went to great lengths to come and work in Galloway including Susan Dobson who slept in a camper van at Cairn Holy, near Gatehouse, so that she could sketch in preparation for making an etching of the iconic Galloway Standing Stones. Kitty Watt from John O’Groats began coming to Galloway to visit her daughter. After touring round the region, using her daughter as a guide, she created aquatint etchings inspired by the Red Kite Feeding station at Laurieston and the sculptures at Glenkiln.

EWAN McCLURE 'Fading Light, Kirkcudbright' Oil on Gesso Panel £950

For some artists the exhibition has been something of a homecoming. Ewan McClure, who now lives in Edinburgh and used to live in Auchencairn, said ‘I hadn’t done any landscape painting for a while and I really enjoyed working for the McGill Duncan Exhibition back in Galloway.’ He chose to depict ‘Rushes by The Dee’ and ‘Fading Light Kirkcudbright’, a landscape of Kirkcudbright viewed from across the estuary, with a Charolais bull grazing in the foreground. His last major exhibition was earlier in the year at Broughton House in Kirkcudbright, where he was commissioned to produce a body of work inspired by E.A. Hornel. 2008 has been a very successful year for him and he has just won the James Torrance Memorial award at the Royal Glasgow Institute (RGI).

This exhibition also celebrates a wealth of local talent including work by artist, poet and author John Threlfall and two beautifully wintry Oil paintings by Alexander Robb. Caro Barlow from Auchencairn has created dynamic stained glass panels and to keep everything local she even melted a Sulwarth Brewery bottle into one of her designs! Potter Christine Smith from Kippford has exhibited some pieces built using a clay ‘extruder’ as opposed to throwing pots on a wheel. This produces long, sometimes wavy, forms, an ideal medium to depict the sea and the people who love to spend time sailing or being in the water. ‘Long Swimmer’ highlights the beautiful flowing form of her clay panel and on a large ceramic piece is ‘Speedy’, a mischievous boy in a Speed boat, whom Christine describes as ‘a boy with an outboard motor, defying the Urr Navigation speed limit!’
The exhibition runs until January the 31st and will be open between Christmas and New Year.

Thursday, 11 December 2008



The delighted purchaser of Christine's ceramic piece 'Speedy' has taken him home already, so I thought he should have a place on the Blog. I am sad that he is not in the gallery to be enjoyed by all our visitors but he has gone to a good home!

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

Anita Klein Etchings

ANITA KLEIN 'Butterfly at Breakfast'
image size 44 x 31 cm framed size 68 x 56.5cm
Framed price £335

The work that I got from Anita Klein in London is just back after being framed by Roger. All are signed and numbered original etchings or drypoint etchings.

I am excited about developing our web site and in the New Year we will be offering an online shopping facility but in the mean time I will put images of work on the Blog. Our latest Galloway exhibition has sold very well and with many people taking the work away before Christmas the exhibition will probably have some new additions over the next month.

ANITA KLEIN 'The Birds Wake Me Up'
image size 44 x 31 cm framed size 68 x 56.5cm
Framed price £335

ANITA KLEIN 'Angel in Spring'
image size 29.5 x 24.5cm, framed size 52 x 49.5cm
Framed price £265

ANITA KLEIN 'Angel Planning'
image size 12 x 9.5cm, framed size 27 x 26cm
Framed price £120

ANITA KLEIN 'Small Angel with Stars'
image size 10 x 12cm, framed size 26 x 30cm
Framed price £120

Sunday, 7 December 2008

A Busy Book Launch

The gallery was bursting at the seams this afternoon for the launch of John Burns' book 'Series of Dreams'. I know John is delighted by the number of friends who came to support the publication of his new book, many traveling great distances to join us. Big thanks to everyone who made the event such a happy gathering.

John spent the afternoon busily signing copies and had to give his talk three times to get round the fact that people were packed into all the different rooms in the gallery!

The book is an ideal Christmas present for the Bob Dylan fan in your life and we have signed copies for sale.

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Impressions of Galloway Opens

What a busy and enjoyable day it's been today...

Jools arrived early to get the mulled wine ready and Jem also came and helped out with all the last minute jobs before we opened.

After all the hard work getting everything ready it was really satisfying to have everything in the gallery looking to so seasonal and connected with Galloway and Scotland.

This was probably the busiest day we've had since we opened the gallery and it's fantastic to work with so many brilliant artists to put on shows like this. Impressions of Galloway is an exhibition we are very proud of.

I feel very lucky that so many people come to support our Openings; there is always such a friendly atmosphere and such enthusiasm for the work on show.

Here are Jill and Roger clearing up at the end of the day!

Thursday, 4 December 2008

Galloway Colours - Purples and Greens

Jill and Amanda Simmons

When Amanda Simmons delivered her work today (beautiful purple and green vessels inspired by the colours of the countryside and skies at her home in Corsock) we were struck by the colour harmonies in the room. The work is almost hung and although none of the other artists knew what the other was creating for our exhibition there is a definite cohesion: it must be the colours of Galloway.

Look forward to seeing you all on Saturday, the Private View is from 11am to 1pm and we are open the rest of the day until 5pm as normal. We will be serving delicious Mulled Wine made by Jools Cox and a non-alcoholic warm spiced punch.

Book Launch - This Sunday

Get your copy of The Galloway News today to read about 'Series of Dreams' the new Bob Dylan book by local author John Burns (pictured).

Remember we are hosting the book launch at the Gallery on Sunday the 7th of December at 3pm. All welcome.

It's going to be a very busy weekend for us here but we're all looking forward to it. We will be lighting the coal fires so that everyone stays warm in this freezing weather.

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Late Night Shopping

We will be open for late night shopping tomorrow (Thursday the 4th of December) until 7.30pm.

Join us for a glass of Ginger Wine in the Gallery and then wander down to Carlingwark Park at 8pm to see the fireworks.

Gift wrapping is a something we are always happy to do for you, at any time of the year. I particularly love this task and Jill is coming round to enjoying it! Customers will also receive a limited edition McGill Duncan jute shopping bag.

Castle Douglas is fantastic for Christmas shopping and with so many shops and cafes open late on Thursday it should be a stress free and enjoyable way to buy your Christmas presents.

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Mia visits the Gallery

Sue Dunne, Mia and Jill

We had a busy day with lots of new work arriving for the exhibition on Saturday. Sue Dunne and Rosie Villiers-Stuart delivered their work with canine companion Mia, a very pretty Collie. The photo shows Jill holding Sue's ceramic Hooper swans and Rosie's watercolour in the background. Tea and biscuits were enjoyed by all with lots of chat about birds - Rosie and Sue had been staying at Caerlaverock Nature Reserve, which is heaven for artists who love birds!

CHRISTINE SMITH Doves and Cabbages Earthenware Dish £42

Christine's husband Rodger delivered her work, staying to have tea and biscuits with the ladies. It's great to see how much how much Christine's ceramics are developing and changing since she started using her new clay extruder. This enables her to achieve long clay forms, including wavy ones! Lots of boats, fish and swimmers...