“Moments” – Seascapes, Still Lifes and Portraits capture a sense of time and place at Dundas Street Gallery, Edinburgh
Covering Scottish seascapes, travel journeys far and wide, portraits and still life, there are around 60 original works of art, representing their individual style and subjects. The attractive, well lit basement gallery is an ideal space with separate walls and sections for each artist.
Describing himself as a realist artist Ken Young specialises in painting boats and harbours along the curving coastline of the East Neuk of Fife. The picturesque fishing villages of Pittenweem, Crail and Anstruther are a painter’s paradise. There are some colourfully evocative paintings here, such as “Still Water” where you can almost feel the salt sea air.
As Ken describes the artistic process for this work, “This is Dysart Harbour on a quiet evening as the light fades. The water is very still, reflecting the colours of the sky. I was aiming for a forlorn atmosphere .. at the end of a day.”
I am also impressed by his Still Life paintings such as the detailed texture of glistening glass and crimson cherries.
After taking early retirement from work in the financial business, Colin Joyce is now relishing a new mid life career as an artist. He also writes articles for Leisure Painter magazine and teaches art on cruise ships.
” I love to travel – my sketches and photographs recall the sounds and smells of the place. I often create a painting on location, “en plein air” inspired by light, the way it changes the landscape day by day, hour by hour.”
Painting in either Watercolour or Oils, there is great clarity in the cityscapes of Edinburgh, a sense of movement of buses and cars on a rain drizzled street; the iconic shape of the Bass Rock and the towering structure of the Forth Bridge; in contrast are charming views of Venice, with the bright sun on dappled water and ochre stone.
Roy McGowan returned to his love of art later in life, having enjoyed painting in his youth. For thirty five years he never picked up a paintbrush which he regrets but is clearly making up for lost time in the studio today. His collection of oil paintings cover his eclectic interest in seascapes, figurative studies and still life. My eye was particularly drawn to his exquisitely drawn “Blue Jug and Apple,” reminiscent of Cezanne.
Like his fellow artists here, Roy is a master at depicting the atmosphere of a quiet seashore and distant horizon with painterly precision.
Meeting Ken, Colin and Roy, three seriously talented artists from Fife, reminds me of the classic comic tale, “Three Men in a Boat – (to say nothing of the dog)”, by Jerome K Jerome. The boating adventures of Jerome and two ship mates, cruising along the River Thames from Kingston to Oxford and back again, was intended to be read as a serious travel guide.
I can just imagine these three friends taking a similar trip – perhaps a barge trip along the Caledonian canal, or a cruise around the Hebrides, with their sketchbooks in hand to capture loch and sea views, beaches, boats and wildlife en route.
Following in the footsteps of Jerome and his friends, on such an artistic journey would make a fantastic exhibition and indeed a stunningly illustrated book!
For more information on this exhibition and the artists: