City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

National Galleries of Scotland Announce 2012 Exhibitions

By edg - Posted on 26 October 2011

National Gallery Complex looking down from the Mound

The National Galleries of Scotland today announced upcoming exhibitions for 2012, including the first exhibition in the newly revamped National Portrait Gallery which opens to the public on 1st December.

The Romantic Camera exhibition looks at how photography from the early days to the present has been influenced by romanticism.

The Scottish National Gallery will also host what is being called the first exhibition of Symbolist Landscape in Europe. It has been put together from collections from multiple leading European museums. Think Van Gogh, Gauguin, Van Gogh, Munch, et al.

Another National Gallery exhibition will look to raise the profile of landscape watercolourist Giovanni Battista Lusieri while the main Summer exhibtion will celebrate Picasso's British connnections with an exhibtion that will feature 60 works by Picasso himself.

The work of S J Peploe is highlighted in a second exhibtion of Scottish Colourists next Autumn, following which the vibrantly coloured and often humourous paintings of Scottish artist John Bellany will be appearing in A Passion For Life next Winter.

Meanwhile, the Modern Art Gallery is focussing on sculpture from the 1900s to the present day.

The gallery also re-launched its website today. The Galleries' online collection of images is now much easier to peruse.

The announcement of the new NGS exhibitions comes as the Scottish government has said that it would not contribute towards the £50 million to secure Titian's Diana and Callisto

Here are the details of the exhibitions as announced today:

Giovanni Battista Lusieri, Scottish National Gallery, 30 June to 28 October 2012

This exhibition will be the first ever devoted exclusively to the impressive and stunningly beautiful work of an artist long deserving of much greater recognition. Giovanni Battista Lusieri was born in Rome in 1754 and died in Athens in 1821. He was active principally as a landscape watercolourist, specializing in broad panoramas, cityscapes, ancient buildings and monuments. Lusieri was considered by many of his contemporaries to be the most skilful landscape painter of his day.

He was admired above all for the accuracy and minute precision of his views, and for his breathtaking ability to capture the effects of brilliant Mediterranean light.

His career falls neatly into two halves – the Italian period (up to 1799), when he worked in Rome, Naples and Sicily, and the Greek period (1800-1821), when he was employed as Lord Elgin’s resident artist and agent in Athens. He was closely involved in the removal, packing and shipping of the Elgin Marbles. The exhibition will feature the best of Lusieri’s surviving work, including an important group of watercolours and drawings still in the collection of the Elgin family, and a spectacular nine-foot wide view of the Bay of Naples from the Getty Museum in Los Angeles.


Van Gogh to Kandinsky: Landscapes of the Imagination, Scottish National Gallery, 14 July to 14 October 2012

This ground-breaking exhibition is an international collaboration between the National Galleries of Scotland, the Van Gogh Museum, Amsterdam and the Ateneum Art Museum, Finnish National Gallery, Helsinki.

It will be the first exhibition dedicated to Symbolist Landscape in Europe, the innovative movement that developed after Impressionism, as artists created a more imaginative and emotional approach to landscape painting, embracing themes such as music, nationalism, science and modernity.

The exhibition will present a stunning range of poetic and suggestive interpretations of nature, including arcadian idylls, the landscape of dreams, silent cities and the power of the cosmos.

It will focus on major artists of the avant-garde such as Gauguin, Van Gogh, Munch, Mondrian and Kandinsky, and also showcase other brilliantly inventive artists from throughout Europe such as Hammershøi, Hodler, Khnopff and Gallen-Kallela who will be set alongside the visionary British artistry of Crane, Leighton, Watts and Millais in a show which will write a new chapter in the history of landscape painting.


The Sculpture Show, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, 17 December 2011 to 24 June 2012

This winter the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art will be given over entirely to sculpture in all its many forms. Works from the collection will be shown alongside several major works on loan to provide an overview of the depth, range and breadth of sculpture from 1900 to now.

The exhibition will feature thematic and monographic displays and will include photography, film and documentary material relating to sculpture and its legacies.

After a worldwide tour, Ron Mueck’s monumental work A Girl (2006) returns to Edinburgh to form the centrepiece of the show.

Displays will include Impressionist sculpture, with works by Rodin and Degas; collage & relief; early twentieth century British sculpture, including Hepworth and Moore; Surrealist works by Giacometti and Duchamp; and post-war sculpture by Paolozzi and Turnbull.

Contemporary sculpture displays will include works by Damien Hirst, Sarah Lucas and Simon Starling, as well as this year’s Turner Prize nominees Martin Boyce and Karla Black. Also on display will be new work by Nick Evans, a Creative Scotland Fellowship Artist, who has been undertaking a period of research within the galleries over the past six months.


Picasso and Modern British Art, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, 4 August to 4 November 2012

The first exhibition to explore Pablo Picasso’s lifelong connections with Britain will be the highlight of the summer season at the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in 2012. Picasso and Modern British Art will examine Picasso’s evolving critical reputation here and British artists’ responses to his work.

Originating at Tate Britain, this pioneering show marks the first time that the two organisations have collaborated on a major exhibition. The exhibition will comprise over 150 works from major public and private collections around the world, including over 60 paintings by Picasso.

Highlights will include masterpieces from all periods of his career such as his great 1925 painting, The Three Dancers, which the Tate acquired from the artist following his 1960 exhibition and major cubist paintings from the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Among the British artists for whom Picasso proved an important stimulus, and whose work will be included in the show, are Duncan Grant, Wyndham Lewis, Ben Nicholson, Henry Moore and Francis Bacon.


The Scottish Colourist Series: S J Peploe, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, October 2012 – March 2013

The autumn of 2012 will see the second in the Scottish Colourist Series of exhibitions with a retrospective of the work of S J Peploe.

Samuel John Peploe (1871-1935) was the eldest of the four artists popularly known as ‘The Scottish Colourists’, the others being F C B Cadell, J D Fergusson and G L Hunter. Born in Edinburgh, Peploe studied there and in Paris, where he lived from 1910 until 1912.

Through Fergusson, he became acquainted with the Parisian avant-garde and the latest developments in French paintings. He began to use bold colour and structured brushstrokes and concentrated on the genres of the still life and landscape for the rest of his life.

Cadell introduced him to the Hebridean island of Iona in 1920 and they were to return regularly thereafter; Peploe also painted in other parts of Scotland and in France. He was the first of the Colourists to receive recognition from the Scottish establishment when he was elected to the Royal Scottish Academy in 1927, eight years before his death in Edinburgh in 1935.

The Scottish Colourist Series: S J Peploe will consist of approximately 70 paintings from both public and private collections, covering his entire career, including many which have rarely, if ever, been exhibited before. The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalogue, based on new research, which will be the first major monograph on the artist to be written in over a decade.


John Bellany: A Passion for Life, Scottish National Gallery, 17 November 2012 to 27 January 2013

John Bellany (born 1942) helped change the course of painting in Scotland. His intensely felt paintings of fisher-folk and their precarious life at sea were a direct challenge to the by then much diluted Scottish colourist tradition and its landscapes and still lifes.

The sheer size and raw emotion of Bellany’s canvases, their depictions of a way of life that the artist knew from growing up in a Port Seton fishing family and their elevation of that life onto a symbolic level were very much at odds with the decorative drawing-room pictures of much contemporary Scottish painting in the 1960s.

This exhibition marking John Bellany’s 70th birthday will contain paintings, watercolours, drawings and prints from all the key periods of the artist’s career. Beginning with the celebrated large-scale paintings of fisher-folk and their boats that Bellany hung on the railings outside the Royal Scottish Academy building in the mid-1960s; through the darker, even harrowing pictures of the early 1970s that show the impact of Bellany’s visit to the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp in Germany; the wild, expressionist paintings of the late 1970s and early 1980s, that seem to explode and disintegrate as Bellany battled with his inner demons; the remarkably honest and courageous watercolours and drawings that Bellany made about his liver transplant and near miraculous recovery; to the richly coloured allegorical paintings that the artist has produced since then reflecting a renewed vigour and optimism as he travelled the world and set down roots in Italy, England and, of course Scotland.

This will be the largest and most comprehensive exhibition of John Bellany’s work since the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art organised the retrospective in 1986.


Romantic Camera, Scottish Photography and the Modern World, Scottish National Portrait Gallery, 30 November 2011 to 3 June 2012

Romantic Camera is the first exhibition within the new Photography Gallery in the refurbished Scottish National Portrait Gallery. This space will display a rolling programme of shows and exhibitions throughout the year.

Romantic Camera will explore for the first time the highly charged relationship between romanticism and photography in Scotland. This exhibition suggests that rather than vanishing during the 1840s, the romantic impulse has been vital to the development of the medium, up to and including the present day.

Romanticism emerged as a literary form in the 1790s and had a powerful impact on Scottish culture, particularly through the influence of the poet and novelist Sir Walter Scott. Photography in Scotland was born in Scott’s shadow and was profoundly shaped by his creative imagination. Characterised by nostalgic longing, nineteenth-century photographers hunted out traces of Scotland’s turbulent history or ranged across the landscape in search of poetic subjects.

Showcasing over 40 different photographers, the exhibition will includes works by Adamson and Hill, Julia Margaret Cameron, James Craig Annan, Bill Brandt, Oscar Marzaroli, Michael Reisch and Zwelethu Mthethwa.