Edinburgh’s City Art Centre opens its doors for 2022 with three exhibitions: a focus on the painter John Henry Lorimer, a display new acquisitions, and a focus on tapestry.
The first retrospective of the gifted but less well-remembered painter John Henry Lorimer displays his art through through the themes of light, identity, family, femininity and home. Interior scenes of elegant Edwardian family life are on display alongside light-filled landscapes, and subjects such as Kellie Castle in Fife, where he and his family lived. The exhibition is supported by a programme of in-person and digital events, including tours, conversations, talks, lectures, poetry readings, art workshops, musical performance, costumed performance and fashion shows.
Artist Kate Downie made the Forth bridges the subject of her first Edinburgh exhibition in 1985, becoming artist-in-residence for the 50th anniversary of the Forth Road Bridge. Her first drawing of all three Forth Bridges features in the Incoming: New Acquisitions exhibition, which highlights new additions to the City Art Centre’s fine art collection – recognised as nationally significant and containing almost 5,000 individual artworks, tracing the history of Scotland’s visual arts from the 17th century to today, which continues to grow through purchases, donations and bequests. The exhibition includes paintings, drawings, prints, photographs and sculpture acquired over the last ten years, by Kate Downie, Rachel Maclean, Alison Watt, David Eustace, Peter Howson, Anthony Hatwell and Ian Hamilton Finlay.
Featuring work by 19 contemporary artists associated with the former Tapestry Department at Edinburgh College of Art, Tapestry: Changing Concepts marks the department’s significance over five decades as a hotbed of artistic invention with a strong emphasis on drawing, alongside learning to weave, and exploring different media to express their ideas. Many of the department’s alumni, having trained in tapestry, went on to develop professional practices in areas seemingly removed from warp and weft. Drawings, installations and sculptures feature alongside textile works, challenging the notion of tapestry as a traditional craft, and demonstrating tapestry as a future-facing art form. Artists featured include many now considered key figures in reshaping tapestry as vigorous, artful and expressive.