Important Message from Project Ability

Due to the weather conditions there will be no workshops or studio access to Project Ability from today through to Monday. This includes all activities here at Project Ability. We will reopen Monday morning as usual. Apologies for any inconvenience this will cause.

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Cameron Morgan and Gregor Wright - Week 4

In the four weeks since their residency started, Cameron Morgan and Gregor Wright have been experimenting with drawing on different mediums, including tea towels.

"At the moment I’m trying to encourage some abstraction and the work we’re making just now is a sort of fusion of our response to neo-expressionism, familiar pop culture icons and ideas of craft and making." said Gregor.

"The tea towels seemed like a good thing to paint on because as a surface to work on they're similar to canvas, but as an object they’re quite humble and mundane. The idea came to me after Cameron and I were looking at the plate paintings of Julian Schnabel, which Cameron liked compared to some of the darker, more abstract painted works."

We're looking forward to seeing where this collaborative partnership takes them! 

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Ladysbridge Stories - February Workshops

Collecting stories, collating conversations and rekindling old friendships

"The Ladysbridge Stories project continues to gather momentum as more ex-patients and staff come forward with memories to share and stories to tell.

We were delighted that so many familiar faces joined us once again at the C-Change offices in Aberdeen and that ex-staff members’ Alastair Minty and Jim Cook popped in to contribute to the session. The BBC also dropped by to hear what we’re up to!

Throughout the project we’ve been collecting imagery and building a picture, through writing, drawing and storytelling, which illustrates the day to day life at Ladysbridge Hospital. We’ve continued to map the site, designing a key of symbols which represent all areas of this remote hospital, from the kitchens and briquette shed to the farms and fields, the flora and fauna.

The sessions are industrious and conversation lively. Some of the stories are moving and often difficult to tell but many are also funny and heart-warming.
It’s so good to see old friendships lost with the closure of Ladysbridge hospital being rekindled through the Ladysbridge Stories project."
-Sharon Quigley, Project Ability tutor

The final Ladysbridge Stories workshop will take place on thursday 22 March in C-Change Aberdeen. 

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On the Road: Douglas Community Centre, Dundee

"Hard to believe that Project Ability artist Jonathan McKinstry and I are half way through this eight week project at the Douglas Centre, Dundee. Time seems to have hurtled by as the group has embraced each session with a real enthusiasm and produced some lively artwork.

We have continued to introduce ideas around playful mark making, like painting with edges of card instead of brushes. Jonathan had described to the group this technique he had seen in a film whereby a surface layer of paint can be scratched into to reveal a contrasting ground colour underneath – otherwise known as sgraffito !

The Dundee Artists tested these methods out using silhouetted images and a bit more drawing from observation."
-Meredith Crone, Project Ability Tutor

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Cameron Morgan and Gregor Wright start their collaborative partnership

After a very successful residency with Charlie Hammond, Cameron Morgan has started his new collaborative partnership with another Glasgow-based artist: Gregor Wright

The two artists met up twice already, familiarising themselves with each other's work and discussing how their respective practices can feed this collaboration.

Cameron showed Gregor some of his work currently in our gallery and in our shop, and they then went to Wright's studio near Trongate 103.

We are very much looking forward to seeing what they come up with in the next ten weeks!

Cameron Morgan's series of residencies is funded by Creative Scotland. Gregor Wright is represented by The Modern Institute. 

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Walking Group - week 3: Maryhill Burgh Halls

On the 7th of February the walking group went on a tour of Maryhill Burgh Halls. 

We took the bus up to Maryhill and were given a guided tour by a lady named Christine. 

We went through the new build section of the building that houses a cafe and small exhibition space into the original hall, a reasonable sized room that when built could hold 1000 people! It was hard to imagine more than a couple of hundred fitting it, fortunately they have a photo from the early 1900's of around 800 men all seated at a dinner just to show that it was possible.

We were then taken up to the roof area, where the new build has created a floor where the original decorative beams have been preserved. The hall opened in the 1870's was taken over by The Maryhill Burgh Trust in the 2000's and has been renovated and saved from dereliction. They have preserved 11 original stained glass windows, which are on display in the main hall, as well as other artefacts in the new section of the building.

The gates were designed by Andy Scott, who did the Kelpies, and are based on the firefighters who worked the area in the 18 and 1900's. 

After our tour it had started to snow so we split and some of us walked along the canal and others returned back to the city to head home.

-Morag McGilchrist

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Shop Item of the Week - Orange Fox by Scott Smith

Our Shop Item of the Week takes a break for our dolls exhibition to introduce you to one of Scott Smith's newest prints, 'Orange Fox'! Scott Smith's talent for drawing animals and birds has no end - the simplicity in his line work captures the very essence of whatever beastie he is working on; always with the added charm and character that is unique to a Scott Smith artwork. We can't get enough of his most recent round of wild beasties. We're introducing the Orange Fox today but we also have squirrels, elephants, tigers, baboons and more. For today though we have added this little guy to our online shop at only £25!

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Artwork of the Week - ‘Miss’ by Dumitra Keogh

Artwork of the Week and Doll of the Day is this cobalt blue ceramic bust by Dumitra Keogh. 'Miss' has traveled to the Project Ability all the way from Ireland to be part of our 'can't take my eyes off you' exhibition. We are delighted to welcome 'Miss' in to the gallery and invite you to come by and say hello! Along with 'Miss' we have over 70 artworks all about the doll. It is a show not to be missed. Up in our main gallery at Trongate 103 until February 24th!

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On the Road: Douglas Community Centre, Dundee

January 2018 saw the beginning of a new project for Project Ability artist Jonathan McKinstry, myself and a group of nine service users of the Douglas Community Centre, Dundee. At the end of January we embarked on an eight week course of Visual Art Workshops.

The first two of these took the form of playing with different media and exploring possibilities. In the first week participants drew and painted with combinations of handmade and professional artist’s tools and implements. There was a bit of drawing from observation and plenty of use of the imagination.

The second week involved some more beautiful mark making, but this time in the form of monoprints.

We will continue to explore techniques over the coming weeks and as we get to know one another I suspect some folk may get hooked on certain art media and wish to delve deeper !
-Meredith Crone

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The Happy Club

Two Project Ability tutors, Consuelo and Celine, have been going along to The Happy Club in Easterhouse for the past couple of weeks. The Happy Club is an ongoing evening club for young people with autism and their parents and these were the start of a six week series of workshops with the two tutors.

Consuelo has been working with the group for quite some time already, but for Celine it was the first time she had been along.

'The art workshop is just one of the activities available to the young people. There's some stiff competition from the computers but there are quite a few budding young artists who have joined us and been very focused in making some wonderful artwork.

The first couple of weeks we have been experimenting with printmaking and we plan to do some work with clay and textiles for the rest of the sessions. As you can see from the photographs, there has been an explosion of colour and creativity so far!

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Artist in residence: Sarah Kudirka

Our newest artist in residence started last Thursday, and has already settled perfectly in the studios. Previously based in London, Sarah Kudirka has recently moved to Glasgow, and is using the residency to further her cityscape polaroid project. A great way to discover a new city! 

"I am working on a big series of paintings about walking and looking up at the sky squeezed in between tall buildings: a simple idea but a compelling project. Each image is made over a Polaroid snap I’ve taken in a city where I live, work or travel. Since starting this project in 2012 I’ve made hundreds of vivid images that have been recognised as “beautiful and accessible” and “highly innovative”.

Sarah aims to make 100 polaroid paintings of cityscapes from the city centre during her time at project Ability, as well as work on canvas. You can follow her progress on our residency instagram @PA_Research_Residency

Welcome Sarah!

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Shop Item of the Week - Ceramic Mask by Robert Cornish

Our Shop Item of the Week features one of the selection of ceramic masks made in our Aspire workshops for the dolls exhibiiton, can't take my eyes off you. This mask has been made by Project Ability artist Robert Cornish, and has a subtle beauty and elegance to it. There's something quite strangely life-like in the tones of the glazing of this mask. It is intriguing to look at, and has been made ready to hang on the wall. This is just one of several ceramic masks in our galler shop just now, all for sale at £25 each. You can also find it in our online shop! You can see them all when you come to visit the show. It is up until February 24th!

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Artwork of the Week - Maasai Warriors and Tibetan Monks by Edward Henry

Our Artwork of the Week and Doll of the Day features eight little peg people! Edward Henry made four warriors and four monks for the 'can't take my eyes off you' exhibition currently up in our gallery at Trongate 103. Henry has borrowed this clever technique and made it all his own. There is so much character and charm in the simplicity of these artworks. Henry has a fascination with other cultures, and explores his curiousity through his art. These Maasai Warriors and Tibetan Monks are the artist's most recent look into another world. Come by to see the show, it's up until February 24th!

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