Posted : 12 July 2017

The work of Stewart Carmichael, one of Dundee’s great champions of art, is to be featured in a new exhibition at the University of Dundee, the first major retrospective since his death in 1950.


Carmichael, who was born 150 years ago, played a leading role in developing the `Celtic Revival’ art movement in Dundee. The `Stewart Carmichael: Celtic Visions’ exhibition displays his own work and also points to the great influence he had in Dundee’s cultural development.


Curator Matthew Jarron said, "Carmichael was arguably the most important champion of art that Dundee had over half a century ago, yet his work has never received the attention it deserves. As well as his significant talents as a painter and illustrator, he was also a tireless campaigner for the role of art in the city.


"He created murals for churches and other public buildings, and played an important role in the development of early art collectives such as Dundee Art Society and the first shared artists’ studios in the city. He was also a vocal supporter of art education, including what is now Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design."


The exhibition will open in the University’s Lamb Gallery on Saturday, 15th July 2017. It has been created in partnership with The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum which is also celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. It also features material on loan from other local collections.


‘Stewart Carmichael: Celtic Visions’ will run until Saturday, 30th September 2017.


For more information contact or 01382 384310.

Posted : 11 July 2017

Exhibition - Museography:

Calum Colvin Reflects on The McManus Collections
Friday 7 July to Sunday 29 October 2017

The rich and varied collection displayed in The McManus: Dundee’s Art Gallery & Museum is the focus of a major new exhibition by esteemed Scottish artist and Head of Contemporary Art Practice at the University of Dundee, Calum Colvin. The artist has positioned a number of his intriguing photographs within the gallery spaces, which comment upon, and relate to, selected permanent displays throughout the galleries. They are an ‘invasion’, an ‘intervention’ an ‘interruption’.

The starting process of Colvin’s work is a 3-D studio set. The set is adorned with every kind of everyday objects – from furniture, ironing boards, gramophones and wallpaper to books, prints and even monocycles. It is onto this assortment that the artist paints his subject – a scene, an episode, a portrait.

In the gallery spaces at The McManus, Calum Colvin has been reflecting upon Dundee and its place in Scottish, British and world culture, using elements relating to the landscape, history and the people from early times to the 20th Century. Each of his interventions offer a new and surprising perspective on the key works in the gallery space, with Colvin using symbolism and metaphor, allegory and analogy, replica and similitude. An office space can become the Swiss Alps, with Napoleon on his charger; a dishevelled bedroom morphs into a lake with a white swan (Mute Swan); a sitting room becomes a roost for pigeons or a set for Robbie Burns (The Common Runt); an artist’s studio a space inhabited by Bonnie Prince Charlie, but with fancy cakes replacing the colours on the artist’s palette (Portrait of Charles Edward Stuart (after Liotard)).

Added to this stunning mix are 3-D photographs, that challenge the nature of photography as a two-dimensional practice, and also complicated ‘Mirror Anamorphosis’ where the stretched photograph is laid flat in a circular form and viewed from an upright cylindrical mirror, in the centre of the piece, allowing the imagery to take shape as a subject.

The end result is magical – stunning works which are almost like a puzzle or riddle. Familiar objects become fascinating and mysterious. In each photograph, the more you look, the more you see.

The exhibition is one of a number of exciting exhibitions and events in a year-long programme to celebrate the 150th anniversary of The McManus. Admission is free. Opening times: Mon to Sat 10am-5pm; Sun 12.30-4.30pm.

For information visit and

Posted : 11 July 2017

Comics students and alumni from the University of Dundee have won a host of awards at the Scottish Independent Comic Book Awards, held as part of Glasgow Comic Con.

Dundee students past and present had been nominated in all of the categories, and duly picked up a string of successes.

The winner of the ‘Up and Coming Talent’ award went to Catriona Laird for her comic `Stinger’. Catriona is a graduate of Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design (part of the University), and completed a comics module in 2015. She is now one of the studio members at Ink Pot Studios, which is part of Dundee Comics Creative Space, where she also volunteers as a facilitator on children’s comics classes.

Letty Wilson, who studied on the MLitt in Comics Studies at the University, won the ‘Best Graphic Novel’ award for ‘A Stranger Came To Town’. Letty won the ‘Up and Coming Talent’ award last year for her art on `Cosmic’, a project she started on the masters course in Dundee. Cosmic’s co-creator Erin Keepers also came runner-up in the ‘Best Writer’ category this year, for her work in Cosmic Issue 3.

In the ‘Best Single Issue’ award, the winner was an anthology, ‘Video Games for Good’ which features a strip by current MDes Comics & Graphic Novels student Zu Dominiak. Zu’s work will be featured in Duncan of Jordanstone’s forthcoming Masters Show, which launches on 18th August.

Chris Murray, Professor of Comic Studies at the University, said, "I am delighted that so many people from our courses and the Dundee Comics Creative Space were nominated for these awards, but even happier with the final results. To take home awards from almost all the categories is a remarkable achievement, and testament to the talent we have here in Dundee. A big congratulations to all of our winners and runners up."

Phillip Vaughan, Course Director for the MDes in Comics & Graphic Novels course, presented the ‘Outstanding Contribution to Comics’ award to Ian Kennedy. Ian is from Dundee, and has been working in the comics industry for over 60 years. He is still going strong, and contributes covers to `Commando’ comic, as well as doing the occasional talk to comics students in Dundee.

Phillip said, "This is a well-deserved award to one of comics’ most successful freelancers ever and I was truly honoured to be asked to present it to Ian. He was an inspiration to me, but is now an inspiration to a whole new generation of comics creators.

"I have been lucky enough to work with him over the last five years, and he has even produced a cover for a comic based on the life of Sir D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson, the first Professor of Biology at Dundee, which is coming out later this year."

Posted : 10 July 2017

Dundee’s £1billion waterfront redevelopment project was linked firmly to the city’s heritage of discovery and innovation today, with the formal unveiling of the Discovery Walk.

Discovery Walk is a series of specially designed bronze plaques commemorating famous people from or connected with Dundee who have made significant contributions to science and society.

Lord Provost Bob Duncan of the City of Dundee formally unveiled the first ten plaques to be installed in Discovery Walk, at Slessor Gardens on the city's Central Waterfront.

There are nine plaques commemorating scientists, engineers, writers, artists, social reformers and philanthropists, plus a tenth plaque introducing the Walk.

The individuals being celebrated were chosen in a public consultation exercise last year. The criteria for selection were that the nominees must be deceased and must have either been born or spent much of their time in Dundee.

They must have made a notable or influential discovery or innovation, either in Dundee or clearly linked to the city.

The audience for the event included relatives of those being honoured in the plaques, together with colleagues, supporters and all of those who have made the Walk possible.

Lord Provost of Dundee Bob Duncan said: "The city already has a number of interesting and exciting attractions that bring tourists to Dundee and it is wonderful that we can now add the Discovery Walk to that list.

"Our heritage is studded with prominent people in a wide variety of disciplines and it is great to see them being celebrated and commemorated in this way."

Discovery Walk is the brainchild of Kelly Marr, an Australian who has made Dundee her home.

She said: "I was inspired by the famous Writers’ Walk around Sydney Harbour celebrating more than 50 writers either from or associated with Australia in some way. During the last 20 years I would hear about some of the great innovations that were made in Dundee, and I always felt that it was a great shame that such achievements were not celebrated publicly.

"To understand the people included in Discovery Walk is to understand that great achievements are the result of intellect, certainty, determination, generosity and imagination. These are the examples that will be passed on to all generations of Dundonians, inspiring the city to retain the accolade of being a world-recognised progressive and innovative centre of achievement."

Ten organisations in the city have agreed to be Champions of Discovery Walk. NCR are overall Champions, and each of the plaques has a Champion closely linked to the achievement being celebrated.

Adam Crighton, Vice-President at NCR in Dundee, said: "NCR considers it an honour and a privilege to champion this unique and important project as we celebrate our 70th year in Dundee in 2016. Courageous, forward thinking individuals, like the ones we are paying tribute to today, are undoubtedly at the forefront of driving innovations that enable us to evolve and grow as both individuals and as a society. NCR has a proud history of continuous innovation over the last 130 years, a number of which would simply not have been possible without the creative legacy of the candidates that we honour today."

Dundee-based artist and illustrator Suzanne Scott, who works under the name WhimSicAL LusH, has been commissioned to design the first 10 plaques. Suzanne has exhibited all over Scotland and her unique illustrations have featured in widely sold prints, stationary, mugs and jewellery.

Suzanne said: ""I am beyond delighted to have been asked to be a part of this exciting and interesting project. To have my work be part of the Dundee Waterfront is such an honour. I was born in Dundee and came back to live here 15 years ago. I never left as it is a beautiful and inspiring city, which I am proud to live in."

The Discovery Walk project is being steered by a group comprising representatives of Dundee City Council, Abertay Historical Society, Abertay University, University of Dundee, Dundee Science Centre and Axis Shield Diagnostics.

The group hopes to be able to raise further funding to extend the Walk with more plaques in the future.

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