Saturday, 24 December 2011

We're OPEN between Christmas and New Year.

Jill and I would like to wish all our friends and customers a very Happy Christmas. We would also like to thank all the artists who've exhibited their work with us during the year and made the gallery a truly inspirational place to visit.

We are OPEN between Christmas and New Year:

Opening Times:
Tuesday 27th December 10am - 5pm
Wednesday 28th December 10am - 5pm
Thursday 29th December 10am - 5pm
Friday 30th December 10am - 5pm
Saturday 31st December 10am - 4pm
We will have the coal fire lit in the gallery and we'll be serving ginger wine and chocolates to our customers throughout the week.
After New Year will then have a short break and open again at 10 am on Friday 6th January - opening times as usual - Monday to Saturday 10 am to 5 pm.

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Art Classes for 2012

Are you keen to paint and draw?

Artist and experienced tutor Joanna Gisbey is offering Art Classes starting in the New Year.

Mondays 1.30 - 3.30 pm
Starting 9th Jan 2012

Auchencairn Village Hall

Tel: 01556 640 417 to book your place - £10 per class

Sunday, 18 December 2011

Still Time to Order Online!

Our online shop has been busy over the weekend. It's not too late for some last minute Christmas shopping. We send most items by Next Day delivery. I've just updated the web site and added three copper candle sconces by Allan Craig. They would make a perfect Christmas present.

Photos from our Opening

I can't believe we only have a week left until Christmas day.

Things have been very busy in the gallery and I just realised I hadn't posted any photos of our Winter Exhibition opening. It was a jolly affair with lots of Mulled Wine and great conversations. We were so busy I didn't get to chat to everyone but lots of people have come back to the gallery to view (and buy) paintings since that very crowded Saturday, at points it was a bit too busy to see the paintings!

Here are some photos from our opening a couple of weeks ago -

Jools made the delicious mulled wine and looked particularly fabulous in orange tights!

And here's some photos of the gallery and the beautiful artwork that we have in the exhibition -
Ewan McClure's painting 'Two's Company' with copper glaze ceramics by Bridget Drakeford. The flamingo ewer is Wemyss Ware by Griselda Hill.
This striking painting 'Memory of Trees' by Hope London has been sold. The amazing slipware lion, 'The King' by Paul Young sits proudly alongside a lustre vase by Jonathan Chiswell Jones. The vase is the largest we've ever had in the gallery by Jonathan and is exquisitely painted with swallows and poppies.

And finally here's the wall next to my desk with John Johnstone's 'Swing High, Red Sky' in the centre. I'm very lucky to sit and work surrounded by such amazing paintings!

Thursday, 1 December 2011

Exhibition Opening 3rd December 2011

Please join us on Saturday 3rd December for the Opening of our Winter Exhibition.
Mulled wine (made by Jools) will be served between 11am - 1pm.
A perfect opportunity to buy original art for Christmas by some of the best artists and makers from Scotland and beyond.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Winter Exhibtition Newsletter

Late night Christmas Shopping

ANITA KLEIN Angel of the Winter Moon

We are open tomorrow, Thursday the 1st December for late night Christmas shopping until 7pm.

If you're at work during the day and always busy on a Saturday now's your chance to have a leisurely wander through the gallery and see the amazing original art that we have for sale. The gallery is bursting as the seams with new work we have lots of ceramics and copper work that would make a perfect Christmas gift.

We've been very busy recently getting everything ready for our Winter exhibition, which opens on Saturday. I have been working hard adding all the new work to our web site; so far I've added 58 paintings to our site, and I still have more to add!

Have a browse online - or even better come to the gallery for a bit of late night shopping tomorrow.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

New Bags!

I've just ordered new jute bags for the gallery. Our previous bags, printed in black, can be spotted out and about shopping with people all around the world.

This time we've chosen a very smart blue. Aren't they lovely?

I'll let you know when they arrive. They take a while so it will be some time in the New Year.

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

Culture Label - Own Art Online

We now have a CultureLabel online shop which allows you to purchase art from the gallery and pay for it in 10 monthly installments using Own Art online. Have a look and shop here.

You can borrow up to £2,000 or as little as £100, to be paid back over 10 months interest free - (0% APR Representative). All the information for the loan is filled in from the comfort of your home, making it easy and convenient.

Any items in our gallery, or on our web site, can be added to the CultureLabel online shop, to allow you to purchase art online with Own Art - just send me an email if you'd like to buy something and it's not on the site.

You can also buy art from us using Own Art by coming into the gallery or over the phone.

Happy Shopping!

Friday, 4 November 2011

People of The Year Awards

Today we were delighted to find out that Jill and I are finalists in the 'Culture Champion' category of Dumfries and Galloway Life's 2011 'People of The Year Awards'.

Our lovely neighbours Clint and Helen from Thistle B Scrumptious are finalists in the Retailer of The Year category.

Both our gallery and Clint and Helen's shop are located at the bottom of King Street in Castle Douglas but we're definitely the 'High End' of the high street!

We'll all be attending the lunch at the Easterbrook Hall on the 9th December.

Tuesday, 25 October 2011

Getting ready for Christmas

Our fantastic artists have been working really hard for our Christmas Exhibition, which opens on the 3rd December.

Michael Ashcroft made a special trip to Dumfries and Galloway to do some painting 'en plein air'. Here he is at The Sands in Dumfries, on the banks of the Nith. And here's the painting he made:

We love hearing about what artists are working on and seeing the work they are creating for our exhibitions so I was delighted to get an email from Michael with these photographs.

Our Christmas exhibition is a little different this year. We are taking a break from the 'Galloway' theme and this has allowed us to introduce some completely new artists and curate an exhibition with them alongside artists who are regularly represented in the gallery. Judging by all the fantastic images I've been getting the exhibition is going to be a stunner!


Unpacking - that's what I've been doing a lot recently. We have deliveries of new work from lots of different artists: ceramic reliefs from Hilke MacIntyre, paintings from Aliisa Hyslop,  lustre ware and domestic porcelain from Jonathan Chiswell Jones, prints from Anita Klein and last week new copper work from Allan Craig. The gallery is brimming with gorgeous new art work.

Away from the gallery I've been doing a lot wall paper stripping in my new house. Lots of progress there! It's quite exciting.

Thursday, 13 October 2011

New Paintings by Jonathan Mitchell

 JONATHAN MITCHELL The River Tay at Kenmore

We have a fantastic collection of new work by the talented Scottish landscape painter Jonathan Mitchell. You can view the paintings on our web site here.

There is something about the painting above that reminds me of the Claude Monet painting in the recent BBC TV programme, 'Fake or Fortune' although that painting was of a river in France. I've got Jonathan's painting hanging next to my desk in the gallery and it's completely tranquil, I love the dark reflections in the water from the trees on the river bank.

Tuesday, 4 October 2011

James Faed 1821-1911 Exhibition at The Tolbooth

James Faed by Thomas Faed from

My brother informed me this morning that I would have to put something on my Blog that didn't mention whippets, as he feared people would think I was mad if I posted any more photos of dogs. Ok, I take his point.

This morning, after my Iyengar Yoga class in Kirkcudbright, I went to The Tolbooth to see the James Faed (1821-1911) exhibition. Our gallery has been selling work by the Faed family since it opened in 1980. I saw the Faeds' work in exhibitions at McGill Duncan Gallery when I was a little girl so I've always known about them and understand the importance of this family's work. The exhibition at the Tolbooth, which runs until the 30th October, very much concentrates on James' incredible skill as a mezzotint engraver. One of his mezzotint plates is on display and there is even the notebook in which he kept note of the charges for each mezzotint commission. He was commissioned by his brothers- some of the best painters working at the time- to make mezzotints of their paintings. I think he was quite highly paid, with one mezzotint costing £200. I'm not surprised, as his work is exquisite.

The exhibition explains the print making processes really clearly and along side the mezzotints there are many interesting artifacts. The other part of the exhibition is on display at The Mill On The Fleet in Gatehouse so I'm looking forward to a visit there before the end of October.

Friday, 30 September 2011

I love Wigtown Book Festival!

Wigtown Harbour. Aww, look at Antony's little white paws.

I love the Wigtown Book Festival! In an ideal world I would like to stay in Wigtown for the whole ten days but sadly this year I could only manage one day away. Jill and I went last weekend and took Antony for his first taste of the book festival.

It's always difficult to take dogs out and about as so few places welcome them but we were delighted that he was allowed to join us for tea and delicious gluten free almond cakes at Reading Lasses and also for lunch at the Bladnoch Inn.

We started the day with a great informal chat by Deirdre Nelson. She talked about her residency at last year's Book Festival where she collected over 700 favourite words from festival goers. It was fascinating to hear what happened to the words and all the projects and collaborations that have resulted. Author J P Flintoff was sitting next to us and he drew pictures and wrote down snippets as Deirdre chatted, resulting in a little paper book by the end of the talk. It's creativity like this that the festival attracts and cultivates. You see it everywhere during the ten days of the festival and it's very inspiring.

Antony at Bladnoch Inn

Our afternoon talk was by David Mach. I enjoyed his current show at the City Arts Centre in Edinburgh but a lot of his talk didn't really resonate with me. We came away with lots of interesting thoughts about public art and private galleries, and went home to have an interesting debate about it over dinner that evening.

Antony in Andy Priestman's Studio

Finally we went to Andy Priestman's beautiful studio to choose work for the gallery and buy some pots. Antony looked as if he was made to pose in Andy's grey and red studio and Jill was wearing exactly the colours of one of the paintings!

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Antony @ Wigtown Book Festival

Here's some photos of my dog and gallery companion, Antony, taken by J D Andrews, who we met at Wigtown Book Festival last Sunday. Thanks for the lovely photos J D! Antony is five and a half months old now and it's a while since I posted some photos of him.

We visited the Artist In Residence at the Wigtown Book Festival, Kim Ayres who is taking portraits of festival goers but Antony was too wriggly to sit still on my knee for a portrait. Take a look at Kim's blog and Facebook page though as he's gathering quite a collection of interesting faces.

Antony has a W for Whippet on his chest!

Friday, 16 September 2011

Vault Art and Edinburgh

A weekend off meant I went to Glasgow and Edinburgh to see what's going on in these two fabulous cities.

On Friday I attended Vault Art in Glasgow's Briggait. The open panel discussion called Art, Money and Value - Artists Talking About Making A Living was an interesting and engaging debate, very well chaired by Graham Jeffery from the University of The West Of Scotland. It was a shame that a discussion about money and art didn't have commercial gallery on the panel but I did manage to make a small contribution and I think some of the points raised were so interesting that the discussion will emerge again in some form!

It was great to catch up with the two Marions from Glasgow Print Studio and then we had to rush back for Gatsby the puppy as he'd had two hours on his own, which was long enough!

Then on Sunday I finally got to see two exhibitions in Edinburgh that I had been looking forward to all summer. David Mach at The City Arts Centre and The Queen: Art and Image at The National Gallery.

Gatsby, Leo and Inga
It was a bit of a family outing as I went to Edinburgh with my brother Leo, his girlfriend Inga and Gatsby the whippet puppy.

David Mach's exhibition, Precious Light: a celebration of the King James Bible 1611-2011, is dramatic, both in scale and subject. His collages are huge and you feel yourself being pulled into all the detail, and a sense of amazement when you step back and see the pieces as a whole. It also made us all want to get a bunch of magazines and start creating collages! Very inspiring.

The Queen: Art and Image is a fascinating exhibition - I'm glad I waited until after the Festival was over as I imagine the space would have been very crowded. The piece I specifically wanted to see was the tiny oil painting by Lucian Freud. It didn't disappoint.  I was lucky enough to see a huge retrospective of Freud's work at the Pompidou Centre in Paris last year. This small painting managed to capture an amazing sense of power and was just as striking as the large scale work which I'd seen in Paris. The three dimensional holographs of The Queen by Chris Levine were quite fascinating and the little holographic postcards in the gallery shop are pretty cool too.

There are only two days left to see this exhibition - if you're in Edinburgh, go!

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Dumfries Delineated

I've yet to make it to this two-venue exhibition 'Dumfries Delineated' but I've heard nothing but good reports.

I am looking forward to David Steel's talk at Gracefield on the 21st September.

Here's a link to an article written by Jim Henderson about his grandmother Christian J Fergusson (her work is featured in the Dumfries Delineated exhibition) and published in The Scottish Review.

Monday, 12 September 2011

Antony and Rollo

Rollo and Antony
Last week we had a visit from our good friend Rollo the lurcher. Last time he'd been to the gallery Antony hadn't arrived so this was their first meeting. How gorgeous do they look together? Rollo is an elderly chap so he didn't really feel like playing. But Vicky and Simon, who live with Rollo and tend to his every need, brought Antony a great monkey rope toy which he loves prancing round the gallery with.

Antony is really lucky because he has so many nice visitors all day long in the gallery, never a dull moment!

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

New Paintings by Winifred Hodge

WINIFRED HODGE Track Through The Beeches

The weather here is distinctly Autumnal but the gallery is looking very vibrant and uplifting with the work from our current exhibition.

We have new paintings in the gallery by Winifred Hodge and this atmospheric painting of beech trees couldn't be more appropriate for the start of Autumn.

Thursday, 1 September 2011

The Magnificent Seven!

This article about our forthcoming exhibition was published last Thursday (a bit early!) in The Galloway News. If you click on the article it will enlarge so you can read it.

Wednesday, 31 August 2011

Autumn Exhibition Opening

Liz Knox PAI PPAI Flowers and Frippery
Please join us on Saturday for the opening of our Autumn Exhibition. We have, as the Galloway News described, a line up consisting of 'The Magnificent Seven':

Leo Blamire (paintings and screen prints)
Margaret Brampton (ceramics)
Diana Hope (paintings)
Liz Knox PAI PPAI (paintings)
Hilke MacIntyre (paintings, lino cuts and ceramic relief)
Joe McIntyre (paintings)
Clare Melinsky (lino cuts)

Drinks will be served from 11am to 1pm and the gallery will be open as usual for the rest of the day until 5pm.

Our hugely successful Galloway Paintings exhibition ended last Saturday. This week we are very busy hanging all the new paintings and prints and we're very much looking forward to Saturday,

Saturday, 20 August 2011

William Stewart - Castle Douglas Paintings

WILLIAM STEWART fl. 1823-1906 Carlingwark Loch, Castle Douglas
WILLIAM STEWART fl. 1823-1906  Castle Douglas from across Carlingwark Loch

We are entering the last week of our Galloway Paintings exhibition and and we are still busy with lots of people coming to view the paintings. If you haven't seen it yet do try and visit next week, it is an exceptional collection of paintings.

I thought I would put the two paintings of Castle Douglas on our Blog as until now they haven't been on our web site. Leo has just photographed them for us. It's very interesting to see two paintings like this as you don't see many of Castle Douglas - Kirkcudbright is always more popular as a subject!

Thursday, 18 August 2011

Dumfries and Galloway Life Magazine - Arts News

We're busy preparing for our next exhibition, which opens on Saturday September the 3rd.

Dumfries and Galloway Life Magazine has featured the exhibition in their September issue, on Mary Smith's Arts News page. The magazine is just out this week with Joanna Lumley on the cover. It's a bumper issue packed full of interesting articles.

(if you click on the image above it will enlarge)

Glasgow Boys at Kirkcudbright

The Glasgow Boys exhibition at Kirkcudbright Town Hall is well worth a visit. There are less than two weeks left to see it, as it closes on 29th August.

Entry is free, but donations are very much needed as the money will go towards staging future exhibitions in the town.

Here are some photos, taken at the opening by Ian Howie. We really enjoyed the opening night but we've both been back for a second look when it was less crowded.

Tuesday, 16 August 2011

John Faed HRSA 1819 -1902 ~ The Spinning Wheel

We have a new addition to our current exhibition, this beautiful John Faed painting called The Spinning Wheel. You can view the exhibition on our web site here.

The work of the Faed family is always incredibly popular in our gallery. This painting has just come from someone's private collection so if you were at the opening you won't have seen it - do come in to the gallery for a viewing.

Monday, 15 August 2011

Jupiter Artland

Yesterday my neighbour Vince took me for a tour round Jupiter Artland, near Edinburgh. We had a fantastic morning chatting about art and wandering round the sculptures and installations. The woodland and parkland surrounding Bonnington House would be stunning without all the sculpture, but with them you are transported into a magical world.



LAURA FORD 'Weeping Girls'

LAURA FORD 'Weeping Girls'

LAURA FORD 'Weeping Girls'








MARC QUINN 'Love Bomb'

Miniature Donkey Foal