‘Shine Like a Diamond’ by Pauline Jackson


With The Voice, Britain's Got Talent and other talent shows back on the telly, we couldn't resist showing you this short movie by Pauline Jackson.

Written and directed by Pauline during last year's Arts Awards workshops, this is a fresh and funny little gem.

Project Ability is currently running three film making workshops, so you can be sure that there will be plenty more films to show you in the near future. In the meantime, you can always have a look at the ones already up on our Youtube channel.

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Friends and Family Fun Weekends: Mosaic



For our second last Friends and Family Fun Weekend, young artists let their imagination run wild and created beautiful, vibrant mosaics!


It was a lot of fun to add shells, broken ceramics, buttons, feathers and even plastic figurines to the compositions, and turning them into fantastic artworks. 


The final Friends and Family Fun Weekend will take place on Saturday 18th May and will be glass-painting. More photos can be viewed on our Facebook Page.


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Luigi Bertonesi, Untitled – Artwork of the Week #05

To mark the first exhibition in our Solo Showcase season, we bring you this colourful drawing by Luigi Bertonesi as the Artwork of the Week!

Luigi has been attending Project Ability’s studio for over ten years, the exhibition presents drawings that he made in the workshop alongside a selection made at home of his own accord.

Luigi’s work is currently on show in Project Ability Gallery until 4 May – don’t miss the chance to see this remarkable collection of visionary images of autobiographical content, mastered into hundreds of hand-coloured, panoramic drawings of spanning Africa, South America, Holland and Gibraltar.

Luigi Bertonesi is the first in three consecutive weeklong solo showcases presenting the diverse artistic practices of the artists from our Aspire programme.


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Open Gallery @ Glasgow Print Studio

On Thursday 25th April drama artist Clare Hume invited Aspire artists to join her at Glasgow Print Studio for a multi-sensory exploration of the exhibition Tableau Vivant by Calum Mackenzie.

The multi textured artworks were a gift for the group.  They told each other stories, danced, sang and were transformed into living sculptures. 

“she had as walking about kidding on we were partying - smoking and drinking and living the “good” life, shaking hands and introducing every one. We crinkled up wrapping paper and bubble wrap and shook it about. We put on angel wings like John Travolta in Michael.”  Tommy Mason

Tomorrow is the turn of Eastmuir Primary School.

The Open Gallery workshops are funded by the Bank of Scotland Foundation and provide children and adults with learning disabilities, sensory impairments and autistic spectrum disorders, their teachers and carers, with opportunities to explore and engage with contemporary visual art.


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Friends & Family Fun Weekend - Saturday 27 April



Free Mosaic workshop this Saturday as part of our Friends and Family Fun Programme!

Bring the family along and create your very own mosaic art! Learn how to arrange, cut and set your tiles to create an amazing mosaic plaque. What’s more you can take away a goodie bag of ideas and materials so you can continue to be creative at home.

For more information on our Friends and Family Fun Programme, including how to book, please click here.


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Meet the Volunteers: Theresa Malaney



This week, let us introduce you to another fantastic volunteer: Theresa Malaney, who has been a great addition to the Aspire team.

"I am delighted to have the opportunity to volunteer with Project Ability. My role is as a Printmaker, encouraging, enabling and facilitating the artists taking part in Aspire groups on Mondays.The work I see being done in these groups, the enthusiasm, passion and energy of both participants and tutors confirms my beliefs about the importance of understanding and acknowledging that the practice of each Artist is equally valid. Visual Art is a means of communication, self expression, interpretation of ourselves, our environment, emotions, beliefs.

Within Project Ability, Artists with mental health, learning disabilities and sometimes physical disabilities can utilise the space, time and resources to create their own Art Practice, and I see people being empowered by being able to make aesthetic choices, and moreover, the work created being valued for what it is- a true and significant Art Practice.

In my own practice, I am interested in exploring the relationship between the conscious and the unconscious, within self, and in relation to other. I mainly work within the media of Fine Art Printmaking, and try to experiment, expand and develop my skills within these media.

My work with the Artists taking part in Project Ability has reminded me that play is an essential part of the creative process, and also that within a limited time frame, much can be achieved."


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Artwork unveiled at the Golden Jubilee National Hospital



In 2012, the Golden Jubilee National Hospital commissioned Project Ability to create artwork to mark the 10th anniversary of the hospital as an NHS centre of excellence. On Friday 19th April 2013, artists Cameron Morgan, John Cocozza, John McNaught, Steven Reilly and Robert McCamley attended the hospital for the unveiling of the work.

To start the project off, the artists visited the hospital to sketch and took photographs. Back in the studio they developed their ideas; working on large canvases they selected a variety of subject matter. Cameron was inspired by the drama of the operating theatre; illustrating both cardiology and orthopaedics. Robert chose the iconic Titan crane which is visible from the hospital and very familiar to Robert who was born and brought up in Clydebank. John Cocozza, John McNaught and Steven explored the hospital architecture, Steven employing vibrant colour to eye-catching effect while the Johns focused on the buildings’ geometry.

The six paintings in the collection are on show in the hospital conservatory before they are moved to their final locations within the hospital.


The artists relished the challenge of working to a brief and are extremely proud to have their work in such a prominent public collection.



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Artwork of the Week - ‘Untitled’ by George McLeod



This week, we are very pleased to bring you a painting by Aspire artist George McLeod. Sequences of yellow, white, blue & green lines hover above a flaming red background like sparks; this painting has depth and a colossal build-up of colour and is full of emotional matter. We are excited that George, among a group of Aspire artists, will be presenting a huge installation of paintings at Platform, The Bridge in August to September 2013.


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Project Ability & C-Change Present the Lennox Castle Website

On the 17th April 2012, Project Ability and C-Change launched the website www.lennoxcastlestories.co.uk.

This remarkable social history project, funded by the Heritage Lottery, has brought together ex-residents, ex-staff, professionals, family and friends to share their memories of Lennox Castle Hospital. 



The project began in 2012, to coincide with the tenth anniversary of the closure of Lennox Castle Hospital and while yesterday marked the end of the project it was also the launch of the website which we hope will reach out to people far and wide who are connected to and interested in Lennox Castle. 

Lennox Castle closed ten years ago yet the impact of the hospital environment and its model of institutional care is still felt today by everyone who was connected to the place.



At the launch we heard stories from Cllr Malcolm Cunning, chairman of C-Change, Marie Christie an ex-resident, John and Sam Bryan; John was a resident at Lennox Castle Hospital and Sam is his older brother. 



After a short break when people were invited to give feedback the artists leading the project; Kate Burton, Tracy Gorman and Meredith Crone shared their experience of introducing the group to a vast array of media and artistic processes.  Elisabeth Gibson, Project Ability’s Director showcased the website and Doreen Kay an ex-resident shared her story.  Doreen’s story was followed by people who had worked at Lennox Castle Hospital and who had delivered the hospital closure programme.



“It was great to hear the patients and their families talk about the project.”

“The best part is hearing the stories and experiences of the people from the Castle.”

“Happy but a bit sad about wasted lives.”

“I didn’t like being in the castle.”

“U need 2 look inside the people.”

“ I have enjoyed Project Ability, my bad memories of Lennox Castle are away now. I have met old friends and new ones.”

“Stories – seeing end results and all the work that was put in.”

“We have a bright future!”

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ReConnect trip to Culzean Castle


'On Tuesday 16th April a group of 19 ReConnect artists left a wet and stormy Glasgow for a coach-trip to Culzean Castle in Ayrshire. On approaching the castle the clouds parted and the sun came out and stayed out for the rest of the day so the group were able to make the most of the various activities that were on offer.

Everyone started with a tour of the main castle. Unfortunately photography is not permitted inside the main building but we can report that there are many fascinating things to see and helpful and knowledgeable staff throughout to answer questions and provide historical information. One of the things that our group discovered is the fact that there is a little Lego person hidden in each room. This is to keep visiting children amused whilst their adults enjoy the finer points of the architecture and furnishings but it certainly gave most of our group a great deal of fun as well!

After the tour inside some of the group went for a walk in the gardens and others for a wander on the beach or a look in the bookshop. Sadly the day passed all to quickly and it was time to get back on the coach and make the return journey to the city. There was lots of talk on the way back about other interesting places we could visit on future trips.'
- Celine McIlmunn


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Fantastic dolls by Ruth Mutch now on sale in our shop



After producing two books ('Say What You Mean' and 'It Might Look Simple to You'), this year's calendar, and showing her work in several exhibitions (including You, me and ASD currently on show in Trongate 103), the very talented Ruth Mutch has started a new artistic endeavour: these beautifully crafted dolls. 

It's as if Aspen and other characters in her illustrations came to life! The felt dolls are now on sale in our shop in Trongate 103, for only £20. You can also order your own customized doll, like the Loki doll below, for £35.

If you are not yet familiar with Ruth's illustrations, just have a look at her blog: http://www.penguinparade.co.uk/



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Reminder - Launch of the Lennox Castle Stories website on Wednesday 17 April



Only two days until the launch of the Lennox Castle Stories website

Join us on Wednesday 17 April, 2pm-4pm, for an afternoon of conversation, hear how the project developed, what we learnt, and the participants’ stories. 

The project has garnered a lot of interest over the last 12 months, with great attendance to our events and several articles in the press (including today's Daily Record!). Come see the results of the year-long project, and hear the former residents' stories in their own words.




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There are still a few places available in our Create workshops



The new block of Create workshops will start at the end of this week, so make sure you book your place in time! We still have a few places available in our Saturday Visual Arts Classes, except in the 8-12yrs workshop which is sold out.

The film workshops, starting next week, (Introduction, 12-18yrs and 18-25yrs) also have a few places left to grab.

If you need more information, please call 0141 552 2822 or email create@project-ability.co.uk



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Duncan Gray, Roger Moore & Others – Artwork of the Week #03

We have come to identify Duncan as being a skilled landscape painter but he also creates very distinct portraits like this series of Roger Moore and Others, portraying Roger Moore as his James Bond character and other actors who have starred in the series.

Made on coloured paper, the drawings are built up with simple block lines of ink depicting cartoonish figures caught in quasi-narrative situations; poised, shouting or contemplative.

Duncan has also added discernible details; one appears to be wearing a decorative collar, showing the artists ability to give representational form and character to his drawings. 

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Meet the Volunteers: Ruth Ansell



Ruth Ansell has been volunteering with us on Saturday afternoons, working with our participants in our Create programme. Her contribution to the group has been invaluable, working one to one with many of our children during the course of our last 8 week block of workshops. Her input has been very much appreciated by both the children and the Saturday staff alike.

Ruth joins us with many skills: a BA(hons) in Textile Design from the Glasgow School of Art and a MA in Design Practice and Management from Glasgow Caledonian University.

She said this of her volunteering experience at Project Ability:

"Every Saturday for the past eight weeks I have walked into the Project Ability Studios to assist with the children’s class ‘Create’. Regardless of how wearisome the week has been I have been catapulted into a world of creativity. Through assisting the many experienced art tutors the project has to offer, I have subconsciously been shown the importance of the creative process, developing both confidence and wellbeing within the individual. It has been a truly inspirational experience to observe the children create their individual works. One that I believe may have broken down some of the obstacles I have faced within my own creative work.”



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Launch of www.lennoxcastlestories.co.uk



Funded by The Heritage Lottery and delivered in partnership with C-Change, Project Ability invites you to the launch of www.lennoxcastlestories.co.uk

Over the last twelve months a remarkable group of people have come together to make art, learn new skills, tell their stories, rekindle friendships, remember and immortalise in words and images the story of Lennox Castle Hospital.

The stories span many years. Some people went to the “castle” in the 1950’s and 60’s leaving when it finally closed in 2002. The individual stories have been captured on paper, in words, in print and on film and now this important contemporary collection of memories can be found on www.lennoxcastlestories.co.uk

Join us for an afternoon of conversation, hear how the project developed and what we learnt and the participants’ stories.

17th April, 2 – 4pm at Project Ability, Trongate 103, Glasgow G1 5HD


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Run, swim, jump for Project Ability! Launch of the 2013 Fundraising Campaign



The clocks have changed, the days are getting longer and lighter, bulbs are flowering, leaves are budding and the streets are filling up with runners, walkers and cyclists training for the annual round of charity runs, marathons, road races, swimathons etc.

If you are in training and preparing for a challenge, please nominate Project Ability as your charity fundraising partner. Set-up a page on Just Giving nominating Project Ability as your charity of choice and send the link to your friends, family and colleagues and we can help spread the word by posting the link on our website and social media.

People are extremely generous: in 2012, our supporters raised £3762 using the Just Giving secure website and a further £1000 by claiming gift aid on eligible donations.

Lets see if we can raise the bar even higher in 2013!!

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Outside In: Call for Artworks



Two exhibitions (in Perth and Glasgow) and an online gallery will showcase work of people who find it difficult to access the art world, whether due to disability, health, social circumstance or art process.

The deadline to submit work online is 30th May 2013. If you need assistance, we can help you set up your online gallery and submit your artwork for selection for Outside In: Scotland: we can help you photograph and upload your artworks and help you write your artist statement.

To submit for possible exhibition in Perth or Glasgow, you need to:
- Have at least 5 pieces of artwork
- Choose which 2 pieces you wish to upload onto the website
- Provide titles for your pieces and measurements in cm
- Start to work on your artist statement

For further details contact:

Project Ability
t: 0141 552 2822
e: info@project-ability.co.uk


Perth Museum & Art Gallery
t: 01738 477679
e: hobrien@pkc.gov.uk

For more information and to submit work online: http://www.outsidein.org.uk

Image: Jacqueline Jones, Birds on Walk





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New Postcards



We have some fabulous new postcards designed by Project Ability artists, in our shop on the 1st floor.

You can see above 'Boat' by Scott Smith, 'Head' by David Bradley, 'Untitled by Ronnie McCulloch and 'The Beegees' by Jemma Gilchrist.


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‘You, me and ASD’ made the 6 o’clock news!


The opening event of You, Me and ASD made the 6 o'clock news on STV, with a short segment featuring two of the artists present and Project Ability's very own Celine McIlmunn!


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Open Gallery - March



For the second Open Gallery workshops of the year, artist Clare Hume created a multi-sensory workshop centred around our current exhibition Big Skies, an artistic exploration and celebration of Nordic skies and weather.



The group followed a trail of spotty umbrellas around Trongate 103 and settled in the Project Ability Gallery, where Clare started her story-telling.



Out of Clare’s treasure trunk came colourful fabrics, sand-filled bottles recreating the sound of the rain, a felt hat echoing the colours of some of the artwork, and even some fake snow!



The next Open Gallery workshops will take place on the 25, 26 and 29th of April and will be in response to the Glasgow Print Studios exhibition Tableau Vivant by Callum Mackenzie.




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The opening of ‘You, me and ASD’ was a great success!



We love it when a plan comes together!

Today, the 2nd April 2013 is World Autism Awareness Day and we took the opportunity to open our exhibition You, me and ASD. For the last six months Project Ability and the Autism Resource Centre have worked together to deliver visual art classes for people aged 14 plus with a diagnosis of autistic spectrum disorder. Some people were experienced artists with a developed arts practice, for others it was a new experience. Everyone showed commitment and enthusiasm and some people have discovered a new interest which they are keen to continue.

58 artworks are displayed in the foyer at Trongate 103 created by 41 artists, many of whom turned up, bringing family and friends, for today's opening. Dr Christopher Mason the vice-chair of the National Autistic Society opened the exhibition, and representatives from Lipsync Scotland -who had delivered a programme of creative writing- brought specially commissioned poetry postcards while two of the writers read short stories.

The opening was a fantastic celebration of creativity, talent, humour and imagination.




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