New Exhibition Launches at Gracefield Arts Centre For Easter

This coming month, Gracefield Arts Centre in Dumfries will be showing a memorial retrospective of the work of artist Monica Whittle in the café gallery. Brought together by her friend, Valeri Heppel, Monica’s drawings, watercolour and acrylic paintings show a free-spirited artist who worked up to her death aged 91 in 2013.

Inspired by the work of Scottish artist Joan Eardley, Monica’s other artistic influences were wide-ranging: from French artists Matisse, Braque to note-worthy British artists like Ivon Hitchens and the late Howard Hodgkin. Monica’s most remarkable strength was the ability to capture the essence of a figure while working at great speed and she enjoyed life and figure studies as much as her landscapes and still life. Trained at the Camberwell School of Art before world war two, Monica moved to Dumfries and Galloway in the 1970’s and became a member of the Fine Arts Society and contributor to many group shows here at Gracefield.
The Council’s Communities Committee, Councillor Tom McAughtrie commented;

“Monica was a fascinating lady whose contribution to the visual arts in the region should be celebrated and it’s great to see this selection of her work at Gracefield. I would encourage you all to get along and have a look at this wonderful exhibition.”
The exhibition runs until Saturday 29 April, and if you haven’t already visited, you still have time to catch the BWPA here at Gracefield in Gallery 2.
The British Wildlife Photographers Award exhibition celebrates both the work of amateur and professional photographers and the beauty and diversity of British wildlife. Winning images are chosen from thousands of entries in sixteen separate categories including a special film category for Wildlife in HD Video and three junior categories to encourage young people to connect with nature through photography. Over 2000 visitors have made their way round the exhibition space so far and feedback has been very good.
The exhibition is accompanied by the British Wildlife Photography Awards: Collection 7 and this stunning coffee table book is a wonderful celebration of British wildlife as captured on camera by today’s best amateur and professional photographers – available at Gracefield at the exhibition price of £22.50 (rrp £25). Also on show in Gallery 1 is ‘Advance’ a selection of work by Dumfries and Galloway Higher Art Pupils and art teachers.
The main exhibitions run until Easter Saturday, so it you are looking for ideas to keep the kids happy in the forthcoming holidays, come and see the shows, try a kids club craft class and join in the free annual egg hunt and quizzes on Good Friday (14 April) and Easter Saturday (15 April).

Check out Facebook and Twitter for more details or visit the website at www.dumgal.gov.uk/gracefield for an online view of the current arts and museums programme.
Admission to exhibition is always free and there’s plenty parking. Try our lovely Café Hubbub for some healthy lunches and snacks, fabulous cakes and chef Teresa’s imaginative scone recipes.

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