Spring Fling introduces a swathe of fresh exhibitors for 2015

Jamie McLennan
Jamie McLennan

Spring Fling is welcoming a fresh crop of 23 new exhibitors to Scotland’s premier contemporary visual art and craft open studios event.

They range from sculptors, photographers, painters and jewellers to a theatrical prop creator and a violin maker who manufactures his own varnish using resin from local bee hives.

Between them they offer the chance to see an amazing variety of highly skilled work – decorative, functional, intriguing, delightful and sometimes challenging.

Among the exhibitors to watch out for is Kate Knott who specialises in figurative paintings with curious narratives.

She said: “Whether it’s vintage oddities, fascinating faces or curious animals, I enjoy discovering the best way to represent them. My paintings can feel quite romantic with considered colour palettes and a loose painterly style.”

There is also Steven Burnie who loves the landscape of Dumfries and Galloway and said: “I work from the landscape to create paintings and drawings that detail the character of the region. My recent work has been informed by the changing light of the Solway Firth and the surrounding landscape.”

Vaughan Trower, started instrument making when one daughter took up the harp and the other the violin. He said: “Violin making is technical and creative. Each musician and instrument needs to be carefully suited to the other.

“I source the tonewoods from a sawmill in Mittenwald, Germany, where I select each piece. I make my own varnish to finish the instruments, this includes propolis from hives at John Mellis, local beekeeper in Dumfries & Galloway, this produces a rich golden varnish and is a distinguishing feature of my instruments.”

Edward Howat has made props for The National Theatre of Scotland, Tron Theatre and many others. Commissions have included dragons, prosthetic masks, aliens and 10 bionic eyes which moved and glowed blue.

Leah Black, Spring Fling Director, said: “One of the ways Spring Fling stays fresh is to invite new artists to exhibit and 2015 is no exception with 23 out of 94 never having taken part before.

“We are delighted to represent a hugely diverse and varied new group, a mix of established and emerging talent; from Vaughan’s violins, to Edward’s sculpted costumes and props, through to five new photographers, and three new installation artists.

“We know that Spring Fling visitors like equally to see familiar faces and to be surprised and challenged by the work of new artists, and we hope that this will attract some new audiences to Dumfries and Galloway in 2015.”

The other new exhibitors are Annirose Ansbro, Anupa Gardner, Barry Young, Beth Watson, Davy Brown, Diana de Gruyther, Eric Pye, Evelyn Gray, Holly Goldsworthy, Kirstin Pilling, Laura Hudson Mackay, Laurie Campbell, Michael Pell, Michal Sur, Morven Browne, Natalie McIlroy, Sarah Stewart, Sarah Tew and Terri Campbell.

Details about them can be found on the website at www.spring-fling.co.uk