Another post by our regular contributor Richard Cullen who is taking the lead on our newest pop-up gallery…
In my last post I mentioned that this year we will be packing up our show and taking it on the road. Well I can now tell you where and when we will be staging this exciting new development.
A mere two hours drive away (weather, lorries and tractors permitting) are the bright lights of Glasgow and it is here that we will be bringing the creative works of the Machars to a new audience. I frequently find when talking to friends and neighbours in Glasgow that when I mention where we live in the country there are blank looks or a vague – ‘really, yes it’s supposed to be very nice there but of course I’ve never been’. To which I always say well you’re missing out! It is of course wonderful to live in place which is best described as a hidden gem but sometimes I think we are just a tad too hidden for our own good.
For those who spend their time creating here and trying to survive on the sale of work to a small local market and the few hardy tourists who make it down the A75 it is not just a matter of being hidden it can be a matter of survival. To be inspired by the landscape and lifestyle around us is all well and good but if your work fails to be seen by a wide audience then it can be a frustrating and disappointing journey.
So with that in mind we very early on in this roller coaster pop up ride decided that if the wider audience wouldn’t come to us we would go to them – hence our choice of Glasgow. The largest city in Scotland with a large population who are interested in art and all things cultural, we would be churlish to discount this audience.
It has helped of course that we retain a network of contacts in the city and it is through these that we have secured a truly unique and special venue for our show. We have chosen to stage our exhibition at Mackintosh Queens Cross. The only ecclesiastical building designed my Charles Rennie Mackintosh to be built; Queens Cross is now establishing itself as a centre for the performing and creative arts.
Situated close to Glasgow’s West End this venue is a very special place for us to hold our first show. How fitting that this atmospheric, distinctive and creative building should host the creative individual work of our rural artists and artisans. The work on show will show this urban audience the talent and creative power of the Machars and will promote not just the artists themselves but the place from where they draw their inspiration.
So we’re looking forward to this exciting new departure, it will be hard at work ensuring that our artists (and our hidden gem) get’s the recognition and publicity that they deserve. I’m sure there will be times in the coming months that we think we were mad to take on this task but I am hoping that on our first night this will be forgotten when this new audience with a glass of something in their hands sees the talent and creativity on show.
Our next task is to select the artists and artisans who will be joining us on our journey and we will be releasing their details as soon as we have made this difficult decision. We are hoping that there will be room for many but are restricted by the need to present a cohesive exhibition that tells the creative story of the Machars to this fresh audience.
The show will open with a private view for an invited audience on the evening of Thursday 5th June. We will then open to the public on Sunday 8th June remaining open to Sunday 22nd June. So if you’ve been promising yourself a trip to the Bright Lights of Glasgow and somehow you just can’t muster any enthusiasm for the Commonwealth Games this year; then maybe the thought of a day up in town with a trip to the shops, a spot of lunch and some great art and friendly faces to end the day will appeal. If you’re tempted get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will reserve you a ticket for the private view – there’s a glass of prosecco with your name on it.