Visual Arts Scotland visit degree shows around Scotland every summer. We look for emerging artists and designers whose work best exemplifies the fresh and dynamic approach to contemporary applied and fine arts which Visual Arts Scotland seeks to support.

From the vast range of talent on offer we select aspiring artists who will form our annual Graduate Showcase. This year, sadly, degree shows across Scotland have not gone ahead due to the COVID 19, with some available online only. We felt strongly as a society that this should not mean our upcoming and emerging talent is denied a chance to show digitally. 

We have whittled 142 amazing Graduate applicants down to just a handful of what we consider to be the rising stars in Scottish art.

With a focus on making and craftsmanship, we have selected twenty shortlisted artists working across all fine art and design disciplines to be part of this year's showcase.

The shortlisted Graduates are:

Shilei Fan

Robert McCormack

Kinga Elliott

Nicola Stead

Catherine Eckersall

Lauren Patchett

Hayley Irving

Holly Evelyn Smith

Sarah Vallance

Benjamin Hall

Danielle Macleod

Sarah Murdoch

Mischa Currie

 

From original shortlisted twenty, we have gone on to select seven finalists:

Roisin Gallagher 

Jamie Watt 

Daphne Jiyeon Jang

Sam Harley 

Molly kent 

Ellen Martin 

Yitong Zhang 

 

CONGRATS to all of our shortlisted artists and to 2020's finalists!

JOIN US! Read more about VAS opportunities and associate membership here: https://www.visualartsscotland.org/membership

Exhibition Archive

Borders Art Fair

Date: 06/03/2020

Visual Arts Scotland is delighted to be invited to show in the Spotlight Area of The Borders Art Fair on the 13th – 15th of March. This is part of VAS’s aims to create quality opportunities to showcase our members work, to generate debate, to test out and exhibit challenging and ambitious ideas - within the context of Scottish and international culture. VAS have the large space at the front of the fair, and we will be showing the full range of what VAS stands for - painting, jewellery, objects, textiles sculpture, furniture. 

Submissions were open to all our members across all artforms. Vas Artists on show include: Hannah Ross, Andrew Phillips, Daniel Lacey, Ann-Kathrin Muller, Kathryn Johnson, Adrian McCurdy, Gemma Petrie, Jacob Littlejohn, Angus Richardson, William Braithwaite, Caroline Ann Mordue, Charlotte Roseberry, Douglas McBride, Matt Morris, Andrew Mackenzie, Olivia Turner, Sylvia Home, Christopher Brook, Nicola Wiltshire, Lyndsey Gilmour, Inge Paneels, Mooie Scott, Lucilla Sim, Thomas Cameron, Lindsey Lavender, Roland Fraser, Genevieve Draper, Julie Barnes, Lynsey MacKenzie, Susie Leiper, and Gillian Mather.

Visual Arts Scotland are also delighted to have three invited members to showcase; Julie-Ann SimpsonCally Booker and David Iain Brown.

Please read more about Borders Art Fair Spotlight on VAS and our invited artists  here: https://www.bordersartfair.com/spotlight-artists

Borders Art Fair - 13th-15th March, Borders Events Centre, Springwood Park, Kelso, TD5 8LS.

 

 

SSA | VAS OPEN 2019/2020

Date: 22/12/2019

It is with great pleasure that we introduce you to the second collaborative venture between Scotland’s two leading arts organisations: Society of Scottish Artists and Visual Arts Scotland. We’ve joined forces once more, with one common vision and clarity of purpose, resulting in a combined annual show which we believe to be the very best in contemporary art and design.

 

CONVERSATIONS IN WOOD

Date: 03/08/2019

CONVERSATIONS IN WOOD
"As in any collaboration, the trees have their own ideas"
- Roger Deakin on David Nash in Wildwood.

Visual Arts Scotland are delighted to announce an exciting celebration of wood, in collaboration with Marchmont House, The Scottish Gallery and Craft Scotland.

Marchmont House will host a rich and exciting celebration of wood, in collaboration with Visual Arts Scotland, The Scottish Gallery and Craft Scotland. At the core of the experience is an exhibition showcasing contemporary makers using wood within their creative practice from across The Scottish Borders, Scotland and beyond, with a series of talks concentrating on their personal conversations with the wood as they sculpt, carve and shape their unique pieces of work. There will also be selected films showing on David Nash, Lawrence Neal and Sebastian Cox, which highlight special journeys associated with making in wood, as part of our goal to spur conversations around wood.

The timing of this event will kick-start a splash of creativity in the Scottish Borders on the back of Pauline Burbidge & Charlie Poulsen’s 26 years of open studios at Allanbank Mill Steading open 2-5th August. The idea arose from a conversation between artist and President of Visual Arts Scotland, Andrew Mackenzie and Hugo Burge of Marchmont House, after the successful ALIGHT exhibition at the RSA in early 2019.

There will be 18 makers & artists involved in the show, with at least 8 present & speaking. Two of the artists, Naomi Mcintosh & Beth Legg were part of the ALIGHT Craft Scotland showcase exploring relationships between wood and other materials. Craft Scotland are also bringing Angus Ross. Other artists and makers were selected either from ALIGHT, through The Scottish Gallery’s recent WOOD exhibition, or through the collection of Marchmont House.

Artists showing are: David Nash, Sebastian Cox, Charlie Poulsen & Pauline Burbidge, Lawrence Neal, Luci Sim, Andrew Mackenzie, Thomas Hawson, Isabelle Moore, Angus Richardson, Roland Fraser, Beth Legg, Naomi Mcintosh, Angus Ross, Eleanor Lakelin, Jim Partridge & Liz Walmsley, Edward Teasdale & Adrian McCurdy.

There are ten reduced tickets for VAS members on the Eventbrite site, for Saturday the 3rd August. First come, first serve!

These will be priced at a special members rate of £62.50 (full price £75.00 – a saving of £12.50), using the code ‘VASWOOD. This price is for the whole days, including tours of the collection and exhibition, talks, films and lunch – see the eventbrite link for more details.

Other tickets are also available.

Full details & Eventbrite tickets HERE

Inches Carr Mentoring Award 2019/2020

Date: 01/08/2019

We are delighted to invite applications from Scottish makers for the third Visual Arts Scotland : Inches Carr Craft Mentoring Award. The award is £5000 for a maker, plus an additional £2000 for a mentor whose discipline and/or professional experience would add value to the winner’s practise. The purpose is to encourage and mentor makers to develop their practice to a higher level, consider innovation and introducing new materials or techniques to their existing practise.

Up to four shortlisted artists will be invited to exhibit their work at the forthcoming VAS exhibition alongside the project that resulted from the previous award in January 2019. Highland duo Yellow Broom have been working with ceramicist Myer Halliday to expand their material and introduce cast ceramic elements to their body of architectural inspired lighting. Faceted block shapes in translucent Parian porcelain are inspired by the unique architectural landscape of Reykjavik, stemming from Clare and Dave’s time in Iceland with Emergents and XPO North. Working together on the design practicalities and aesthetics of a series of surface standing parian light blocks they are striving to convey Yellow Broom's vision of clean, precise, flat angled surfaces, utilizing Myers own clean and minimal aesthetic, and his vast knowledge and expertise of the material.

The purpose of the award is to encourage and mentor makers to develop their practice to a higher level, consider innovation and introducing new materials or techniques to their existing practise. Shortlisted artists will be invited to exhibit a body of current work in a dedicated section of Visual Arts Scotland’s next Annual Exhibition at the Royal Scottish Academy, 22 December 2019 – 30 January 2020. The winner will be announced during the exhibition and will be invited to develop a new body of work in conjunction with their mentor to be exhibited at the subsequent VAS annual exhibition. 

The deadline for applications is 1 October 2019.

This is a development award and is aimed at makers who are looking to develop a new body of work or expand their existing practise.

Eligibilty:

• Applicants must have been living and working in Scotland for four or more years, and at least four years since graduating 

• The award is open to makers, applied artists, designer makers and craftspeople working in any discipline Application

• Applications open on Tuesday 8 August 2019 

• The deadline for applications is Tuesday 1 October 2019 

• All applications must be made through the online portal on the Visual Arts Scotland website and include up to three images, an artist’s statement, a statement of intent, and a short CV

• You can add up to five images of your work to your application 

• Images should include your current or most recent work. You may also include any prototype or preliminary research images that correspond to your proposal

• Within the selection of images uploaded at least one should show the work in its entirety, and one should be a close up shot that demonstrates quality of making 

• The images submitted should show the work you would like to submit for exhibition 

• Submitted images might be reproduced in publications to accompany the exhibition so please make sure you have permission to use the image and credit photographers as necessary 

• There is an application fee of £15 

• Shortlisted artists will be informed in the week commencing 4 November 2019 

• Submissions will be judged both on the written proposal, and the quality of work proposed for the exhibition. The proposed work should show where you are currently in your creative practise, and your written proposal should clearly demonstrate how the award would build on this and help you in your continued development. 

• Please answer each of the questions in the application in full.

The Mentor: 

• Applicants may suggest a preferred mentor in the application if they wish to do so, but it is not a requirement and we will work with the winner to recruit a suitable mentor if necessary 

• If you do name a preferred mentor please explain your reasons for choosing that person, explain what value you hope they could add to your practise 

• If you do not have a mentor in mind please detail instead the particular area of your practise that you would like to develop, eg introducing new technology, working with a new material, expanding on existing skills 

• If a mentor was not specified at the time of application then VAS and Inches Carr will use their pool of contacts to identify a suitable mentor in line with the requirements outlined in the winner’s application 

• The appointment of the mentor will be subject to approval by The Inches Carr Trust and Visual Arts Scotland. We may suggest an alternative mentor to the one you have specified in your application 

• The mentor will work with the maker to develop a body of work to be exhibited at the subsequent VAS Annual Exhibition where the maker will be shown as an invited artist 

• The £2000 mentoring fee should cover around six sessions where the maker and mentor meet, and also reasonable communication by email/phone in the interim periods between meetings. The fee will be paid in instalments directly to the mentor Judging: The panel will consider the following in drawing up the shortlist

• A clear demonstration that the applicant has considered a new direction in their work and has an understanding of the role a mentor could play in it 

• The clarity of the proposal and ability to convey potential outcomes 

• The quality of the artists current work and its appropriateness for inclusion in the Visual Arts Scotland : Inches Carr Mentoring Award exhibition 

• Applicants are encouraged to focus on a single area for development, and not to include too many varying outcomes

Terms & Conditions 

• Applicants must be resident and working in Scotland for at least four years and at least 

four years since graduation.

• The shortlisted artists must make the selected work available for exhibition from 15
December 2019 – 1 February 2020

• Any exhibited work that is for sale will be subject to VAS’s standard commission of 40%. The
work does not have to be for sale

• The maker will be required to document the development of the project as it unfolds for
monitoring purposes, and for future use by VAS and Inches Carr via the press, social media
and within publications. This should take the form of excerpts of conversation between the
maker and mentor, images of the work in progress, developmental sketches etc

Apply here: https://visualartsscotland.oess1.uk/entrydetails.aspx?exhID=115

 

 

Niklas Gustafson

Alight

Date: 26/01/2019

26 Jan - 22 Feb 2019

We are delighted to present our 2019 Annual Exhibition, ALIGHT, in the majestic upper galleries of the Royal Scottish Academy in Edinburgh. The open submission will as always sit front an centre, alongside a host of cutrated and invited elements.

  • The general open submission gives artists at all stages in their careers an opportunity to exhibit their work in Scotland's flagship arts venue. Artists selected for the exhibition are also eligible for a whole host of amazing awards and prizes.
  • The jewellery open submission celebrates ambitions, innovation and sustainability in jewellery practise. with a new focus on sustainable and ethical jewellery practise we are delighted to invite Ute Decker, a pioneer in this field, to exhibit alongside jewellers and silversmiths from the open submission.
  • The VAS : Inches Carr Mentoring Award is open to early to mid career makers, looking to advance their practise in conjunction with a mentor. The four shortlisted artists for 2019 will showcase their award proposals alongside the work in progress of last years winner, Ffion Blench.
  • Our third material specific collaboration with Craft Scotland will focus on artists working in wood, ranging in scale from the architectural to the precious.

Gillian Mather

Tatha Gallery

Date: 25/08/2018

We are delighted to be teaming up with the Tatha Gallery to present a showcase of works by members of Visual Arts Scotland from 25 August - 22 September 2018. Helen Glassford and Lindsay Bennet, co-founders of the gallery, have worked with a panel of VAS representatives to select a varied selection of works that demonstrates the diversity of creativity that VAS represents.

The Tatha Gallery is one of Scotland's leading contemporary art galleries. Located in a beautifully restored Georgian building known as The Newport, their unique and welcoming gallery has a strong focus on Scottish contemporary art showing time honoured, established artists and emerging talent. The painting, printmaking and sculpture on display, along with their stunning location makes a recipe for interest, excitement and excellence.

Summerhall

Satellite

Date: 26/05/2018

26 May - 13 July 2018
Summerhall, 1 Summerhall Place, EH9 1PL

Visual Arts Scotland in association with Summerhall are delighted to present the work of eighteen of the hottest emerging talents on the Scottish Art scene. 

Since its inauguration in 2015 our Graduate Showcase has celebrated the finest emerging artist graduating from art schools in Scotland, exhibiting their work in the prestigious RSA galleries in Edinburgh. SATELLITE will track the progress of aspiring artists, some of whom we have previously featured in the Graduate Showcase, and some of whom we are delighted to be showing for the first time.

Associate Membership of VAS caters to younger and early career artists, and is our societies future. VAS strives to be part of the complex debate between contemporary fine and applied art praxis and this fine selection of upcoming artists perfectly embody the diversity of our organisation.

Tim Foxon

OPEN

Date: 29/01/2018

VAS & SSA Together

29 Jan - 8 March 2018

In a departure from the previous shared format the VAS and SSA exhibitions will be presented as a single exhibition, Open, jointly selected and curated by representatives of both societies. At the heart of the Open 2018, as always, will be the Open Submission, where we will join forces to show the furthest extremes of contemporary art practice, from craft to digital and everything in between. 

The Open Submission will be complemented by a number of curated projects staged individually by the societies.  We will bring you further details of our own programme, and that of the SSA, as they become available . . . 

FLY 2016

Date: 13/12/2016

3 - 27 December 2016

The Royal Scottish Academy Building, The Mound, Edinburgh

Visual Arts Scotland are thrilled to announce our 2016/17 annual exhibition, FLY, which launched on Saturday 3 December in the stunning upper galleries of the The Royal Scottish Academy Building on the Mound in Edinburgh. This year we have formed new exciting partnership with Craft Scotland, strengthened existing relationships with the art colleges, and as always we will extend an open invitation to all practicing artists - emerging and established, applied and fine artists, working in large scale or small, to demonstrate the level of talent out there via our open submission. See full details on each of these below

Converge 2016 Banner

Converge 2016

Date: 29/01/2016

VAST

VAS:T 2015

Date: 07/02/2015

Visual Arts Scotland presents VAS:T 2015, taking full advantage of having the entire upper gallery at the RSA to address their refocused mission to consider the relationship between applied art and contemporary arts.

Open Exhibition

Annual Open Exhibition 2013

Date: 01/03/2013

Visual Arts Scotland 2013 was held in the more intimate downstairs space of The Royal Scottish Academy. Our aim remained to promote the quality and diversity of contemporary fine and applied arts in Scotland, giving them an equal platform. A more minimal and coherent hang allowed our exhibits space to breathe in the small downstairs galleries. We achieved a strong, well paced exhibition that does not overwhelm the viewer but still demonstrates our commitment to diversity.