Artwork of the Week - ‘Untitled’ by Alan Moore

This week we are very pleased to bring you a verdant painting, right from the sketch book of ReConnect artist Alan Moore. 

Alan is a self taught artist and enjoys painting for it’s reflective and therapeutic effects. Gazing out of a window and starting with just a view and a paintbrush, he lets the marks take over, creating dense visual material, a product of just looking and painting and creating something different from how the eye sees the world.  

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New Stock Coming Soon…

Look out for new stock in our shop soon when these fantastic little buildings take to our shelves!

Our ceramic room resembled a building site this Monday as our Aspire artists were busy constructing everything from wee bothies to castles and skyscrapers! 
These charming little buildings will be lit from the inside with a tea light and on sale soon in our new shop, watch this space for the finished articles over the next few weeks…these could be hot property!

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Project Ability was awarded some filming equipment by the People’s Postcode Trust

A few months ago, we applied for a grant with the People's Postcode Trust and were one of the lucky charities to be awarded some filming equipment. As well as a HD Camera, with tripod, microphone and headphones, we received a brand new MacBook Pro! 

The grant included a full-day training session in Edinburgh, where some of our staff were shown how to use the different equipment. After a morning filled with technical information, we spent part of the afternoon in the Edinburgh Gardens, making a short film about our given subject: 'Andy Murray is coming to the Royal Botanical Gardens'. Let's just say we put all our new knowledge to good use and let our creativity flow!

Thanks a lot to the People's Potscode Trust!

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Young Project Ability artist received a Create! Art for Autism Award

Create! Art for Autism 2014 is an art competition open to all young people aged 11-25 years who are formally diagnosed with an Autistic Spectrum Condition (ASC) including Asperger's Syndrome. The competition aims to dispel the myth that people with autism cannot be creative and to show that art can significantly improve their quality of life, facilitating experiential-based learning and instilling life-long skills.

Ian Bruin and Dominic Hemphill- Whyte, who both attend Project Ability’s Create Programme, reached the final of the competition and the winners were announced on 18th July at an Awards Day in Wales.  Ian Bruin’s film ‘How do you get a poor penny off the road’ received a Highly Commended Award in the Animation category – Congratulations Ian!  A list of all of the winners can be found on Create Art for Autism’s website, as well as photographs of the Awards Day.

Congratulations to both Ian and Dominic !

Photos courtesy of the Bruin family.

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Cameron’s Way features in new phone app ArtHunter

The National Galleries have launched a new phone app as part of GENERATION, and our very own Cameron's Way: Coast to Coast is featured in it!

ArtHunter is the free mobile phone app for art lovers in Scotland. Use ArtHunter to discover, browse and capture selected artworks then reveal more about them with exclusive content from artists and experts. From this summer, ArtHunter will be bursting with contemporary art as part of GENERATION, the landmark series of exhibitions tracing the remarkable development of contemporary art in Scotland over the last 25 years -

ArtHunter will give you
- access to video clips, audio, related artworks, zoomable  images and hidden details
- ability to unlock extra content when you visit participating art venues
- regional collections to plan your GENERATION art tour
- regular updates with new artworks and exclusive content
- The Vault, a section packed with artworks from other periods while ArtHunter is in full GENERATION mode

ArtHunter is completely free to download and use, and is available now for both Android and iOS phones. 

(Image via National Galleries)                                                                                              


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Artwork of the Week - ‘Frustration’ by David Bradley

This week, we are very pleased to bring you this enigmatic painting, 'Frustration' by ReConnect artist David Bradley. 

David describes the inspiration behind this work, 'You can go about all day feeling frustrated and nobody would ever know. I used a brush and a cloth when I painted this. I often feel frustrated but I never own up to it.'

'Frustration' and other works on show at 'The Dizziness of Freedom', Bermondsey Project, London July 2014.

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Commonwealth Games Road Closures

The Games: Day 1
As we are situated just a few streets away from the Glasgow 2014 Hub and right in the heart of the Merchant City Festival, you may have some difficulties if you are travelling to Project Ability by car. 

Surrounding road closures include Candleriggs from Ingram Street to King Street, Glassford Street, Stockwell Street and Parnie Street. Please make sure to plan your journey ahead if you are attending one of our workshops (in particular during the Merchant City Festival) or visiting our gallery.

For more detail on road hot spots, visit this interactive map here

For more information on how to reroute and reduce your journey time, please visit the Get Ready Glasgow website

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Shop item of the week - Penguin tea towel

Our shop item of the week is this amazing tea towel designed by ReConnect artist Ruth Mutch. If you like her series of Penguin postcards, you will love the tea towel: Batman and Robin penguins, Tartan penguin, Bagpipe playing penguin and many more!

The tea towels are on sale in our gallery shop and our online shop for only £8.

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Artwork of the Week - ‘Untitled’ by Marshall Morbey

This week we are very pleased to bring you this amazing painting by Marshall Morbey!

Marshall's painting has a charismatic Pop Art charm and, constructed like a collage, he layers and realigns the picture. Are these bottles? An epic painting in its inscrutability!

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Unlimited: What Lea Cummings did in June

Lea Cummings shares June's activity in the studio as he continues his Unlimited project to explore the spiritual aspects of physical reality, ritual performance and the role of human beings within the universe.

"The second month of my project was very busy and very productive. I mostly focused on the performance and video elements, working towards a video to enter into Unlimited on Film which will be part of the Unlimited Festival at the Southbank Centre in September. I was assisted in this by sarah Glass. We did some filming in Mugdock Country Park of a burning sigil ritual and also shot some performance footage in the project room at Project Ability. As we needed to film the performance shots in the dark due to using projectors we had to do this through the night. It was quite exciting and slightly creepy to be in the studio after dark and have the place to ourselves..." 


"In June I mostly...

Listened to - Daphne Oram, Kuro, Sun Ra, A-ha, Now That's What I call Music Volume 2.
Read - Philip K. Dick short stories , The Gnostic Gospels, Xerox Ferox.
Ate -  Noodles, Mandarin Cheesecake, Spinach."

For more information on Lea Cumming's practice visit

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Friends and Family Fun Outing - The Burrell Collection

Saturday’s Friends and Family Fun Outing seen our brave families defying the ever changing Glasgow elements for a fun filled day at The Burrell Collection and Pollok Park.

After viewing the famous collection, and getting lots of inspiration and ideas for future Friends and Family Workshop activities, our young artists created their own wonderful sculptures and drawings using found objects collected from the park grounds.

Inspired by artists such as Andy Goldsworthy, their temporal masterpieces thoroughly brightened up a rather drizzly Pollok Park!

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Merchant City Festival - Storytelling Workshops

Working with Storyteller and Performance Artist Clare Hume, Project Ability will take adults and children alike on a magical, multi-sensory journey around Scotland, inspired by Cameron’s Way: Coast to Coast, a large mural installation.

Travel around Scotland from the comfort of the gallery and experience the tastes, smells, sights and sounds of the country. With the backdrop of the exhibition mural as inspiration Clare will lead everyone on an exciting cross country adventure, stopping at different spots to take in the view, listen to the sounds and sample a local delicacy or two, feel the sea breeze on your cheek as you hop between the islands or the chill on your fingers as you scale a snow topped mountain!

Sunday 27th July, 1-1:30pm and 2-2:30pm
Wednesday 30th July, 1-1:30pm and 2-2:30pm
Sunday 3rd August, 1-1:30pm and 2-2:30pm

The workshops are free but ticketed, please call us on 0141 552 2822 to book a place.

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Artwork of the Week - ‘Thistle’ by Ian Doak

The Artwork of the Week is 'Thistle' strikingly executed in primary colours by Aspire artist Ian Doak. The work is built by blocks of colour and shapes using oil bar on paper with green grid-like lines, effecting the final detail of the thistle. 

With the use of red, blue and yellow offering an austere echo to basic colour exercises, combined by the artist they have created an enigmatic image that is successful and surprising.

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Friends and Family Film Workshop

Today was the third day of our Friends and Family Film Workshop, and the first day of filming. During the previous workshops, the group devised a scenario and worked on the props and backgrounds. Today, actors and crew started filming, and everyone was focused on what they had to do.

With a title like 'FBI Special Agent', we can expect an action packed film!

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Road closures due to the Commonwealth Games

The Commonwealth Games are upon us, and we can already feel the city buzzing! Our office is situated near the Glasgow 2014 hub, which means the area will be extremely busy in the coming weeks. Please make sure to plan your journey ahead if you are attending one of our workshops (in particular during the Merchant City Festival) or visiting our gallery.

You can find information on road closures and traffic on the Get Ready Glasgow website. And if you are a sports fan, make sure to stop by our gallery and pick up one or more of Ruth Mutch's Commonwealth Penguins cards!

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Interview with David Bradley for Outside In and the Anxiety Festival

This interview with ReConnect artist David Bradley was produced on behalf of Outside in, an arts agency for artists working outside of the mainstream or coping with issues of mental health and anxiety.

David's work is currently exhibited in 'The Dizziness of Freedom', a group exhibition as part of the Anxiety 2014 Arts Festival. Prior to its launch, they focused on David's work and asked us to chat with him to discuss his influences, work and aspirations.

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GENERATION workshops for adults with disabilities

Project Ability is delivering a summer programme of multi–sensory workshops exploring contemporary visual art and art spaces as part of GENERATION

Each person is offered the opportunity to take part in two workshops. In our gallery, in Trongate 103, we are showing a new mural painting by artist Cameron Morgan and we have teamed up with GOMA to deliver the second part of this special workshop duo. Both sessions are created and led by Drama Artist, Clare Hume. They are interactive and accessible experiences, using movement, storytelling and sensory stimuli to excite the eyes, ears, nose and fingertips!

These workshops are free of charge but booking is essential.

Workshop one is located in Project Ability’s Gallery in Trongate 103 where Clare will take you on a journey inspired by Cameron Morgan’s epic painting:Cameron’s Way coast to coast. 
Monday 14th July: 10:30 - 12:00
Tuesday 22nd July: 10:30-12:00

Workshop two takes place in GOMA where you will explore the building and its nooks and crannies. 
Monday 21st July: 1-2:30pm
Wednesday 23rd July: 1-2:30pm

Please contact: 0141 552 2822

GENERATION is a landmark series of exhibitions tracing the remarkable development of contemporary art in Scotland over the last 25 years. It is an ambitious and extensive programme of works of art by over 100 artists in over 60 galleries, exhibition spaces and venues the length and breadth of Scotland.

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Friends and Family Outing - The Burrell Collection

As part of our Friends and Family Fun Programme, Project Ability will be offering a series of fun filled trips to cultural venues across the city, with an exciting arts and crafts activity to conclude the day. This Saturday is the first of the series, with a trip to the Burrell Collection, followed by an outdoor art workshop. 

Saturday 12th July – Burrell Collection and outdoor art
Cost: £5 per group
All children must be accompanied by an adult

To book a place, please call us on 0141 552 2822.

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The Intern Diaries- Adrianne’s Blog Week 15

Another Friday has rolled around and, yes, it’s time for another blog- although there’s a tinge of melancholy to this one, as it’s going to be my last! Yes, my four months here at Project Ability are at an end. Although, true to form, it’s been a busy old week trying to finish everything off!

Last Friday saw the launch of Cameron’s Way: Coast to Coast, and the launch of our newly refitted shop. The evening was undoubtedly a success, and not just because there were free refreshments! To quote one attendee:

“It’s so unexpected… a really fun interpretation of Glasgow, away from the traditional… it’s incredible!”

I don’t think you can say fairer than that! There have been lots of lovely comments left in our guest book too, noting how cheerful and invigorating the mural is. It’s open until August 23rd, so come down and have a look for yourself- it’ll cheer up grey, rainy days no end.

There was no rest for the wicked after that, though: Saturday was the latest Friends and Family Fun Workshop, and the theme was distinctly floral. The group were making patches for our Flowers of the Commonwealth banner, which will be on display in Trongate 103 in September.

This project seems to have inspired some really imaginative results: I was out at one workshop about a month ago, and have had a nosey at some of the patches from our other associate schools. Every single one has been truly unique, despite all working to the same brief. I really think the finished banner is going to something quite spectacular!

The rest of the week was spent catching up with our Aspire Summer Workshops, snapping pictures and trying not to get in the way of photographers Alicia and Iain! I also had to wade through the mountains of footage and photographs I’ve taken in my time here- looking through it all has really shown me how far I’ve come in the last four months.

It doesn’t seem like that long ago I was sitting writing my ‘Meet the Intern’ blog and thinking about what was to come in the months ahead. I had no idea what I’d be in for when I applied for the job, and was slightly terrified when I got it- after blustering about my technical skills, I now actually had to prove them!

When I first applied, I was looking for a creative challenge that I hadn’t got in previous jobs. I’d been working in technical departments as a trainee, and was feeling pretty uninspired. Thankfully every single person I’ve encountered here- from artists to volunteers to my fellow colleagues- has welcomed me with open arms and encouraged everything I’ve undertaken. It was a bit daunting trying to remember faces and names, but I got there in the end!

I also wanted to work with different workshops, which I’ve certainly had a chance to do: from the bustling Aspire workshops, to the ReConnect walking group, kids’ Create Saturday workshops and the Introduction to Film classes, the variety of activity going on has truly inspired me.

In saying that, it’s not just been about making films: I’ve also got to write this weekly blog, help out at exhibitions, go on day trips and even run my own workshop. If you’d told me I’d be doing that before I started, I would’ve balked at it. Before this I’d never taught a thing in my life!

I’d better wrap things up here before I start waxing lyrical too much. All I can say is I’ve had the most humbling, inspirational and challenging four months of my life here at Project Ability. I’ve learned so much from every single person that’s walked through our doors. I can’t thank everyone enough for giving me the opportunity to be a part of this fantastic team and get as much as I possibly could out of my time here. And on that note, goodbye and happy Friday everyone!

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Artwork of the Week - ‘Tunnock’s Tea Cakes’ by Cameron Morgan

As well as creating murals, Cameron Morgan also turns his hand to ceramics and has made these little unique barnacle-like objects of Tunnock's Tea Cakes. 

These unique little objects are available to purchase in our new shop and we are open until 8pm tonight - be sure to pop by! 

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Photographer Alicia Bruce is documenting our Aspire workshops

Project Ability turned 30 this year, and one of the many ways we are marking the event is by producing a book celebrating the amazing artists who attend our Aspire workshops.

The publication will show a selection of images by photographer Alicia Bruce, who has been commissioned to capture the essence of the workshops during a two week residency. For the last week and a half, Alicia and her assistant Iain Littlejohn have been taking individual portraits of the artists in the studio, as well as group set-ups staged in the workshop.

“It has been a privilege meeting everyone, finding out about individual practices and getting to spend some one-on-one time with the artists. We heard what makes them tick and how much Project Ability means to them.

We have been made to feel very welcome, people were happy to participate in the project. We even had an impromptu karaoke session last week, with Tom Jones’ It’s not unusual!

We’ve had some really good feedback so far, it has been a great experience, very collaborative. I feel that I’ve been able to extend my own practice, it’s not just a commission.”

Many thanks to Alicia and Iain for their work and friendliness. We are looking forward to seeing the photos!

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Meet the Volunteers - Thomas Leyland-Collins

The last block of Introduction to Film workshops just ended, and we wanted to thank our wonderful volunteer Thomas Leyland-Collins for the work he did with the group. Here he tells us a bit more about his practice and his experience at Project Ability.

" I graduated in Environmental Art from the Glasgow School of Art in 2012. Since graduating I have been developing a practice which integrates diverse elements ranging from sculptural sound installations to hosting mini FM Transmitter workshops and more recently have been exploring new techniques and materials such as bronze casting and throwing clay on a potter’s wheel.

My work explores the dialogue between sound and space. More specifically, it focuses on the relationship between the soundscape and our perception of the surrounding environment. Therefore, my work is concerned with the possibilities of how sounds are, and can be, used in a social context. Currently my practice has a focus on utilising technologies which have become redundant within the sphere of today’s consumerist society and consequently are now freely available yet still retain the potential for creative endeavour.

Volunteering at Project Ability on the evening film workshops has been an incredibly refreshing and rewarding experience, the children on the course never failed to surprise me with their fantastic imaginations for new and exciting ideas - some were quite happy to make stop motion animations with Lego whilst others had visions for magical stories recruiting others from the class to be part of their story.

All in all volunteering at Project Ability has been a truly invigorating experience and has reminded me of how important the role of art plays when growing up in terms of stimulating the imagination and satisfying that creative urge which we all inherently possess."

Thank you Thomas! If you are interested in volunteering with Project Ability, please click here

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Discussion about the meaning of Outsider Art with Tanya Raabe

Project Ability associate artist Tanya Raabe was in the studio yesterday meeting with ReConnect artists to discuss the meaning,  understanding and relevance of the term Outsider Art. This is the first of a rolling conversation with artists in Scotland, Wales and England where we explore contemporary artists who are working outside the mainstream norm, thinking about the labels that are used in describing their work and the barriers which can see their work placed into particular types of exhibitions. 

We had tea and cake and enjoyed a really interesting mix of viewpoints. Lots of people spoke about the huge amount of satisfaction they got from seeing their work in exhibitions, but first and foremost they made the work for themselves and for their own personal reasons. They also talked about how when work is taken out of the studio and exhibited, they had confidence that Project Ability would show the work with dignity and to best effect, and that they did not consider their personal histories to be relevant to how people viewed their work. Mostly, people were pragmatic and if being labelled an outsider artist brought opportunities, they’d go with that particular flow.

We recorded the session and will make a more detailed note that we will share with you and ask that you share your thoughts on this subject.

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Hold the date! International summit for artists with learning disabilities and their studios

Hold the date!

What : International Summit for artists with learning disabilities and their Studios

When: 4 – 6th March 2015

Where: Project Ability, Trongate 103, Glasgow , G1 5HD, Scotland

Workshops, exhibitions and lots and lots of conversation.

Project Ability is inviting some of the world's most ground breaking learning disabled artists and their studios to Glasgow in March 2015 for three days of creative dialogue, practice exchange, exhibition and celebration.  For the first time ever, artists from across the world will come together to share their experiences and expectations, explore what drives them to make art and their ambitions for the future. With the artists setting the agenda this is an event for artists with learning disabilities delivered by artists with learning disabilities with a view to making the rest of the world take notice.

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