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Angus & The Mearns

Meffan exhibition tells the story of Angus and the Great War

September 10 2014

The outbreak of the First World War and its effect in Angus is being marked in a new exhibition in Forfar. The exhibition uses iconic objects, artworks, poetry and slideshows to tell the history of life in the trenches, The Black Watch and of local recipients of the Victoria Cross. Visitors to the Meffan Museum and Art Gallery can also view a selection of war drawings by Sir Muirhead Bone, who was appointed Britain’s first official war artist in 1916. Photos by Kim Cessford.

Angus & The Mearns

Meffan Museum getting its 70s groove on

October 21 2014

An Angus museum is on the hunt for space hoppers, Choppers and all things punk, disco and glam rock. Staff at the the Meffan museum and art gallery in Forfar want to gather a colourful trove of all things 1970s, be they photographs or objects synonymous with the decade, for an exhibition planned for early 2015. The hope is that the guardians of such goodies can lend their personal link with an altogether groovier generation to the display. Building on the success of a recent display of 1970s photographs, The Meffan will showcase a full temporary exhibition, celebrating an era of flares, flowery shirts and extravagant facial hair. The exhibition will run from January and include objects from The Meffan’s historic collections and photographs. Anyone who can lend a 1970s object, or would like more information on the exhibition, can visit 20 West High Street, Forfar, email the.meffan@angus.gov.uk or call 01307 476482.

Motoring news

Audi’s new Q cars

April 12 2017

Another week, another new Audi. Two new Audis, in fact. The German car maker has announced a couple more additions to its Q line up of SUVs. The Q4 is a coupe-SUV hybrid that will go up against the BMW X4 and Mercedes GLC Coupe. As its name suggests, it’ll be positioned between the compact Q3 and bigger Q5. At the other end of the scale is the Q8, which will go head to head against the Range Rover. It’s lower and sleeker than the Q7 Audi is also producing. In concept form, it sat only four people, although it seems likely the production version will be a five seater. There’s a 630 litre boot as well. Eagle eyed Audi followers will notice the only SUV slots left to fill are the Q1 and Q6. Watch this space...

Angus & The Mearns

Culture chiefs quash concerns over future of Forfar’s Meffan

August 10 2017

Angus Alive has given assurances over the future of a popular museum and art gallery in Forfar after concerns were raised by local artists. The Meffan was established in 1898 and the museum’s art gallery showcases the work of local, national and internationally-renowned artists. Artists have raised concerns about the future of the museum in the wake of budget cuts including one of Scotland’s leading contemporary artists John Johnstone. Mr Johnstone, who is currently exhibiting at The Meffan, said: “There are concerns among artists locally about the future of The Meffan. “I thought of the song Big Yellow Taxi by Joni Mitchell which includes the lyric: ‘You don’t know what you’ve got ‘till it’s gone’. “I’ve seen a lot of art galleries in Scotland and this is up there with the best of them. “The gallery is well known not just in Forfar but across Scotland. “A great wealth of experience has been lost from The Meffan very recently with a string of retirals.” The museum collects objects, photographs, artist works and archive material relating to the history of Forfar. Angus Alive also cares for the Angus Council art collection. Fiona Dakers, ANGUSalive’s senior manager for libraries, customer and culture said:  “Angus Alive, the culture, sport and leisure trust for Angus, has recently appointed visual arts officer Gill Ross. “Gill started in July and is already working with artists on exhibitions planned for The Meffan in the latter half of this year. “The next exhibition, opening in September, will be “Length x Breadth” featuring works by sculptor Michael Visocchi. “She is also connecting with the local and national art scene to further develop public engagement with the first-class Meffan exhibition programme. “Gill will be taking our visual arts programme outside the walls of the Meffan to more Angus Alive facilities, including our museums and libraries gallery spaces, to reach a wider audience across Angus. “We are already making plans for the annual Winter Exhibition in December, and will be inviting submissions from professional and amateur artists in October. “The Meffan is, and will continue to be, a well-used and much enjoyed gallery space in Angus and we look forward to exhibiting an extensive and eclectic mix of national and local art work in future.”

Angus & The Mearns

Gallery ‘delighted’ watercolour display is returning to Forfar

August 5 2015

A major watercolour painting exhibition is coming to Angus next year, it has been announced. The Meffan Museum and Art Gallery in Forfar will host an exhibition by the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolour (RSW) in May. It last came to the gallery in 2012. The relationship between the RSW and Meffan began in 2009 when the gallery showcased its annual open exhibition, usually held in the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh. Angus Council’s galleries curator Jim Boon said: “We are delighted that the RSW has decided to return to Forfar. “Our relationship with them goes from strength to strength and it is an indication of the esteem in which the gallery is held that they trust us with an exhibition of such national importance. “The exhibition is open for anyone to submit work, so I expect Angus to be well represented in the final selection”. The RSW was founded in 1876, with the support of the Royal Scottish Academy, by artists to promote the medium of watercolour through exhibitions, and to encourage the bold, free and colourful qualities of Scottish painting. The society received permission from Queen Victoria to use the royal prefix in 1886 and many renowned artists have been members, including Sam Bough, David McClure, Adam Bruce Thomson, Claire Harrigan, and George Paul Chalmers. Details on how to submit work for the exhibition will be announced later in the year, with updates posted on the RSW website and gallery’s Facebook page.

Angus & The Mearns

Dundee artist’s work has tails wagging

July 4 2013

A Dundee artist unveils her latest collection of work at an Angus gallery this weekend. Jennifer Robson presents The Girl Who Had a Tail at the Meffan Institute in Forfar. The exhibition opens on Saturday and runs until August 3, with a preview event on Friday night. Ms Robson works in the recently-refurbished Wasps Meadowmill Studios and graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone with a degree in drawing and painting in 2004. The Girl who had a Tail includes painting, drawing, large-scale sculpture, poetry and short stories written by the artist. The exhibition will feature drawings and small objects made by Robson exhibited alongside selected museum objects, including a horse skull, on loan from the D’Arcy Thomson Museum at Dundee University. Meffan Institute curator Jim Boon said: “The quality of her work speaks for itself. “It is strong yet subtle, thoughtful and poetic, all underpinned by exceptional technical skill.” The Meffan Institute is open Tuesday to Saturday 10am to 5pm.

Angus & The Mearns

Meffan museum’s 1970s exhibition has a certain flare

August 28 2014

Staff and visitors at the Meffan in Forfar dusted off their flares to promote a new 1970s exhibition. It features a gallery of back-to-school images from the defunct Forfar Times newspaper, which ran from 1974-78. Back to School 70s Style! will include a display of photographs from the time when big hair, tank tops, flares and platform shoes were all the rage. The display runs until September 15 during normal Meffan opening hours 10am to 5pm, Tuesday to Saturday. For more details call 01307 476482 or the.meffan@angus.gov.uk.

Angus & The Mearns

In pictures: Meffan Gallery’s 70s exhibition is full of flare

January 24 2015

An unashamedly nostalgic trip down the decades is being taken in the Meffan Gallery’s first exhibition of 2015. Homing in on the decade that delivered the winter of discontent, the Forfar gallery is set to brighten the next couple of months for visitors with a technicolour extravaganza of ’70s glam, including a snapshot of local life in that era. The display runs until late March. Photos by Kim Cessford.

Angus & The Mearns

Gingerbread tribute to the Wee Red Town

October 14 2013

When Libby Jones was invited by Bank Street Gallery owner Susie Clark to exhibit at her gallery in Kirriemuir, she became intrigued by the history of the town. As well as Kirriemuir’s most famous son and Peter Pan author JM Barrie, she discovered the town had also been home for a time to AC/DC singer Bon Scott, Victorian mountaineer Hugh Munro, and 19th century writer Violet Jacob. She found the town had been a hotbed of witchcraft in the 16th century and is also world famous for its gingerbread and decided to combine all these elements. Ms Jones went on to craft a boxed set of prints, which also doubles as a card game. She said: “This tongue-in-cheek edition of 10 boxes, of 20 cards per box, features Kirriemuir characters presented on a slice of gingerbread on a plate. I have also made a poster featuring all the 10 characters in the game.” Visitors can see images of Edinburgh Castle with fireworks, wildlife such as gannets, and artwork made after a visit to Antarctica. Londoner and master printmaker Ms Jones exhibited work from her sub-zero stay at a Discovery Point exhibition in Dundee last year. Children can see her work Cooking the Climate, a comment on global warming, which consists of a microwave oven and slideshow with rotating polar animals. There is also a fossilised mobile phone in a second installation, Fossils of the Anthropocene an exploration of the traces that might remain of civilisation in 50 million years’ time. She is also exhibiting a selection of her woodcuts, linocuts, collagraphs and screenprints at the gallery. The exhibition runs until November 8 and opening hours can be found on www.bankstreetgallery.org, or by telephoning 01575 570070.


Half of Turner Prize-winning artist’s new exhibition opens at DCA

March 4 2017

A new exhibition of work by Turner Prize-winning Mark Wallinger has opened simultaneously at Dundee Contemporary Arts (DCA) and The Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh. MARK WALLINGER MARK is split into two parts and will be shown in both venues until Sunday 4 June. It is the first exhibition in Scotland by the artist and features Wallinger’s most recent body of work: the id Paintings (2015-16). These are presented alongside a series of sculptures, films and wall-based works which further explore the themes of identity, reflection and perception addressed in his new work. In the Dundee half of the exhibition, 12 of Wallinger’s id Paintings surround a new work, Self (Symbol) (2017), a capitalized ‘I’ aggrandized as a three dimensional statue the height of the artist. The id Paintings have grown out of Wallinger’s extensive series of self-portraits, and they reference the artist’s own body. His height – and therefore his arm span – is the basis of the canvas size. They are exactly this measurement in width and double in height. Wallinger described the paintings as the basis of both the Dundee and Edinburgh exhibitions. "There are different works in the two spaces, but these are the starting point, or spine if you like," he said. "There is quite a lot of work around the idea of identity and my presence." Video pieces are also included in the DCA gallery, including Shadow Walker in which the artist filmed his shadow walking ahead of him. In MARK, a 2010 creation, Wallinger chalked the title all over the city of London within the parameters of single standard-sized brick. This deadpan tagging is rendered as a photographic slideshow, made up of 2,265 images. A mirrored TARDIS is also on display in the exhibition. Wallinger said the development of Dundee had been notable in the time since he first visited the city to prepare for the gallery. "I came up here about a year ago to look around and think about how this show might be hung. "There has been so much work, lots of work, on the V&A since then. It looks amazing already - I quite like it as it is." Beth Bate, director of DCA, said: "We’re delighted to be welcoming Mark Wallinger to our galleries and to be working alongside The Fruitmarket Gallery in Edinburgh in this compelling exhibition of two parts. "Mark's first show in Scotland features his new body of work, the enigmatic id Paintings. "We can’t wait to welcome audiences to this exciting exhibition." MARK WALLINGER MARK is a collaboration between Serlachius Museums, The Fruitmarket Gallery, and the DCA.