Sunday, 24 May 2009

Review from The Galloway News

What a busy weekend we've had! Loads of really interesting people to chat to in the gallery and lots of people appreciating the work we have on show. One more day of the Spring Fling Open Studios event to go and I'm sure that will bring lots more art lovers to the gallery tomorrow.

Here's a review of our current exhibition, it was published on the 21st of May in The Galloway News:

McGill Duncan Gallery in Castle Douglas is showing work by painters Jonathan Mitchell and David Sinclair with porcelain by Rebecca Callis. David Sinclair lived and worked in Galloway for many years before moving to the Borders. Jill Blamire who runs the gallery said ‘We’ve had lots of local people in the gallery who have fond memories of David both as a teacher and artist’. Most of David’s work concentrates on Still Life. David paints with an unmistakable style and his work conveys a subtle humour through clever composition: a bunch of grapes suspended above a coffee cup in ‘Coffee Fable’ or a large pottery jug balancing precariously on the edge of a table in ‘Peeled Orange’. David was awarded the prestigious RSW title when he was elected to become a member of The Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour in 2001. He attended Glasgow School of Art and studied drawing and painting under William and Mary Armour and David Donaldson. The body of work that he is showing in this exhibition reflects his life long commitment to painting and his standing as a well-known and respected Scottish artist.
DAVID SINCLAIR RSW Coffee Fable £800

DAVID SINCLAIR RSW Peeled Orange £2000

Jonathan Mitchell exhibited at McGill Duncan in 2008 and his Angus landscapes were so popular that for this exhibition he visited Galloway to capture the beauty of the landscapes. A popular painting in the exhibition is ‘The River Dee at Glenlochar’ it shows Jonathan’s extraordinary skill for capturing light on water in his landscapes. His style is realistic without being tight or in any way photographic. Last year he began to take an interesting new direction with his work, painting atmospheric cityscapes. This has given him a chance to use vivid colours such as the bright emerald green of a traffic light in ‘6pm Central Glasgow’ or the many hues of blue in his depiction of late-afternoon shoppers in ‘16.30, Buchanan Street, Glasgow’.

JONATHAN MITCHELL 16:30 Buchanan Street £925 

JONATHAN MITCHELL 6pm, Central Glasgow £950
Jonathan says of his work ‘I don’t differentiate between my rural and urban paintings, the latter being ‘landscapes’ within a city; each a record of what is there, and an attempt to convey what it feels like to be there.’ Castle Douglas King Street hasn’t escaped Jonathan’s attention and he has painted both a daytime and evening scene of this familiar street specifically for the exhibition.

REBECCA CALLIS Porcelain Vessels
The two painters have their work beautifully complemented by the Porcelain Tableware of talented ceramicist Rebecca Callis. Rebecca’s pottery studio is in Sedbergh, Cumbria and her exhibition in Castle Douglas meant she made her first visit the region and immediately fell for the beauty of Galloway. She uses subtle pastel glazes and delicate forms to make pieces such as jugs, tea, coffee and cocoa cups and rice bowls. Rebecca was chosen by the Crafts Council to take part in their touring exhibition ‘Table Manners’. Her pieces are intended for everyday use and Rebecca hopes they will become much used and loved pieces in peoples’ kitchens. She says ‘We all have our preferred cups with size, colour shape and weight contributing to their appeal.’ Rebecca’s work certainly holds a delightful appeal and the clusters of vessels in delicate pastel colours look stunning displayed around the gallery. 

REBECCA CALLIS Porcelain Bowls
The Gallery will be showing this exhibition during the popular ‘Spring Fling’ open studios event. They have extended their opening hours from 5pm to 6pm from the 23rd to the 25th of May and will be open on Sunday the 24th of May. Jill said ‘Spring Fling is a fantastic Arts event for the region. Last year we had visitors coming to the gallery from far and wide, even from as far away as Vancouver, Canada. Galloway has a thriving artists’ community.’ The exhibition continues until Saturday the 25th of July.

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