NT Art Month Returns for its Second Edition, Showcasing Edinburgh’s Vibrant Independent Spaces and Creative Talent

Lisbeth Thalberg

NT Art Month, an exciting festival which launched last year, has announced the line up for its second edition to be held this June 2024. With returning galleries alongside new initiatives and partners, the festival is focussed on the amazing arts in Edinburgh’s New Town, celebrating the importance of independent spaces – which is more important than ever in the current climate.

The 2024 festival is sponsored by leading wealth manager Investec Wealth & Investment UK, who are part of the Rathbones Group. Angus Kerr, Head of Scotland & Northern Ireland at Rathbones, comments:

We’re excited to be playing a part in shining a light on the incredible local artistic talent that can be found on the doorstep in Edinburgh’s New Town and supporting its fantastic local art galleries. We hope that local people, whether they are seasoned visitors to art galleries or have never stepped into one before, take the opportunity to come together and enjoy a shared cultural experience of walking the streets to see the artwork on display as part of the festival.

We’re delighted to be supporting such an important community initiative and helping to make art more accessible to everyone here.

The participating galleries for NT Art Month, sponsored by Investec Wealth & Investment (UK), are:

& Gallery who will present an exhibition by artist Emily Moore. Moore creates arresting, multi- layered landscape paintings using an amalgamation of personal images – usually photographs taken on her own travels. Working directly onto wooden panels, Moore builds her paintings, layer upon layer, masking and cutting out the intricate patterns.

The Scottish Gallery who will host Amongst the Trees, a curation of indoor and outdoor sculpture celebrating the work of Scottish-based sculptor Andrea Geile. Alongside Geile’s work will be a contemporary, vintage and historical curation of paintings and objects celebrating nature and our environment by some of Scotland’s leading artists.

Powderhall Bronze Editions, who will be exhibiting selected bronze sculpture cast at Powderhall Bronze fine art foundry. Featured artist, James Howden, will be showcasing a new body of sculptural work, highlighting political and social tensions in the public domain through the use of humour. His pieces explore societal issues including violence, war, and consumer culture.

The Fine Art Society will be exhibiting Gerald Laing: Myth & Muse – The Cult of Celebrity. The mythology surrounding events and individuals brings the cult of the celebrity into sharp focus in this exhibition. Drawing together work from 1962 to 2011, the year of Laing’s death, the exhibition includes oils, bronzes, prints and preparatory drawings.

Open Eye Gallery will show two concurrent exhibitions from artists Kirsty Wither and Chris Bushe RSW. A Layered View, Wither’s exhibition, will be an enhanced and modern colourful exploration of traditional subject matter, while Chris Bushe will present a new series of recent paintings continuing the artist’s abiding fascination and passion for the islands of the Hebrides and especially of Islay, Mull and Iona.

Atelier Gallery will present The Importance of Being Small – this exhibition of small paintings, will highlight the impact that something small and often overlooked can have on you, especially when paired with creative framing techniques.

Watson Gallery, whose exhibition Summer Favourites will include an eclectic mix of artworks from Watson’s most popular artists, ranging from the bold and bright to the delicate and detailed. The exhibition encompasses a variety of styles and genres, representing the gallery’s most-loved local, national, and international artists.

Harvey & Woodd, who will showcase wildlife artist David Cemmick’s contemporary animal sculpture. In an out-of-the-box approach to preserving wildlife, David uses his art to encourage the world to stop and consider the future. The thought-provoking exhibition will be followed by a multifarious display of Scottish art from all genres and periods – a wonderful selection of oil and watercolours from the 19th century to present day.

Heriot Gallery will present two successive shows highlighting the eclectic styles and evolution of figurative art and portraiture. Reframing the Figurative Form will be followed by the Young Artists Show, curated by the Gallery’s very own young artist Hattie Gledson. Heriot Gallery is

excited to present new artist Vincent Spain, who explores the urge to articulate the universal human experience through the ‘recognisable’.

New to NT Art Month, sponsored by Investec Wealth & Investment (UK), this year are:

Art in Healthcare, a charity based in Edinburgh who work across Scotland. It provides engaging and impactful creative programmes to support and improve the mental and physical health and wellbeing of individuals in Scotland. Art in Healthcare has a large art collection which it shares to make health and social care environments more friendly, welcoming, and stimulating for patients, visitors and staff and they work closely with professional artists to support people to explore their creativity through practical art activities. For the festival’s launch night, Art in Healthcare’s at 18 York Place will be open for collection tours and an opportunity to meet the team and hear short talks about their work. They will also host events across the festival.

Pauliina Marjanen who will display her work in a pop-up exhibition at Good Brothers Wine Bar. Good Wines, Good Times encapsulates the essence of everyday indulgency through Pauliina’s playful art displayed in a very natural habitat. With this exhibition Marjanen captures the warm energy of shared gatherings, from clinking glasses to messy plates, with vibrant colours and a touch of naive whimsy.

The festival is also supported this year by Holyrood Distillery: established in 2019 and located in the centre of Edinburgh’s historic old town, the brand takes inspiration from their surroundings and from Edinburgh’s brewing and distillery heritage. Holyrood Distillery produces one of the

city’s only single malt whiskies and an award-winning range of gin – you can sample the gin at the festival launch.

Good Brothers return to support the festival this year from their location on the corner of Dundas Street and Northumberland Street. With old favourites, stately Bordeaux and Burgundy, the Imperials of Italy and Spain, plus half-crazed rural vignerons with massive moustaches,

there’s something for everyone at this relaxed cellar space.

The List are back on board as the festival’s media partner for 2024. With a monthly magazine and an extensive digital platform, The List publishes and distributes information on events and entertainment and is a must-read for finding out what’s coming up.

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Journalist and artist (photographer). Editor of the art section at MCM. Contact: art (@) martincid (.) com
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