One of Scotland finest living artists helps  Gracefield Galleries celebrate its 70th anniversary

Gracefield Galleries in Dumfries is celebrating 70 years with an exhibition by Kate Downie RSA.

By The Newsroom
Thursday, 26th August 2021, 11:50 am
Updated Thursday, 26th August 2021, 12:15 pm
Gracefield Galleries is celebrating its 70th anniversary
Gracefield Galleries is celebrating its 70th anniversary

Between Seasons features eight major tree paintings in oil on linen, each one closely observed and mirrored exactly six months apart in time.

Created in Kate’s rural Fife studio during the covid pandemic, they are personal acts of love and nurture painted.

Like an hourglass, the paintings have two bases and can be turned through 180 degrees, representing the cycle of seasons at a time when we, as humans, have remained in one place due to travel restrictions.

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Living a life of deferment and postponement while, at times, acting as a carer for her elderly mother has prompted Kate to reflect on how she works.

Having spent the last 25 years exploring an artistic vision for the extremes of a Scottish urban/industrial landscape and Scotland’s coastal edge-scapes, she’s now exploring a more conceptual approach to the secret world of plants and trees over time, and how they impact on our lives.

With this work presented on the ground floor and stairwell, upstairs the artist has curated a complementary show of more than 30 artists selected from the Gracefield permanent collection, including Andy Goldsworthy, Silvana McLean, William Gillies, and Archie Sutter Watt.

Most works are available to buy, including a new print edition created for the Gracefield exhibition. A full colour catalogue is available, priced £10.

To book a visit slot visit or just drop-in.

Councillor Andy Ferguson, chairman of the Communities committee, said: “Kate Downie is establishing a reputation as one of Scotland finest living artists.

"Her ability to connect through her work and inspire a second look at the familiar, both the local and the wider landscape, is always a joy to see.”

In Gallery 2 a very special retrospective exhibition continues: 20/20 Re:VISION by Freda Blackwood until September 4.

It’s been very well received with more than 1000 visitors viewing Freda’s work, which includes costume, sculpture, painting, and printmaking.

The free exhibition is open on Tuesdays-Saturdays from 10am-5pm.