Friday, 10 August 2012

Festival Exhibition 2012: Olympic Reflections

Joseph Pearce's Bar, 23 Elm Row, Edinburgh.
From Sunday 12th of August 2012

As it usually happens, once I start thinking about writing something, it starts growing and all I read afterwards seems to be falling into place. It is no coincidence, and it happens to all of us according to Arthur Koestler in “The Act of Creation”.
These days have been strongly marked by the Olympics. Some BBC journalists had been accused by viewers of being very hard while interviewing sports men and woman taking part. They refer to “failure” and “disappointment” when they should have congratulated them instead. This attitude would not surprise author Oliver Burkeman, who believes that the “positive thinking” culture has led to us being terrified of failure, instead of embracing it together with the uncertain nature of life as a necessary step in any endeavor. Neruda said that the triumph of the real man rises from the ashes of failure.  I started wondering about the untold fights and failures in the paths of some of the medalists and how many of them would have risen from their own ashes and overcome fear and the possibility of losing only to secure a long and cherished goal. I thought of Andy Murray and his patiently carved route to the top. Recently I have been fascinated by the ideas of Philippe Petit in Cheating the Impossible in the theme of being able to domesticate patience in the pursuit of a goal.
Once again, as if serendipity was an invisible hand turning paintings into thoughts, I came across the work of Daniel Young. A young artist who, inspired by his late grandfather's dementia, created a narrative where a young boy finds a black stone that turns him into an old man; the stone symbolizing the loss of youth and memory, among other things. To me, his works are a visual example of the creative potential of our hard times and the beauty that lies in the ability to embrace it all, the good but also the sad.
I am happy to welcome his paintings while sad to have to say farewell to those of Aremy Stewart soon. She presents her last collection of works before she leaves us for the Netherlands at the end of the month.
Join us this coming Sunday 12th of August to celebrate a beginning, and an end, and everything in between.

Vanessa Davila 

The exhibition runs until the end of September (excluding Aremy Stewart works)
and also includes works by Ronnie Buchan, Jacqui Higgs, Christine Morison, 
Dagmar Shilling, Mike Dix and other invited artists.

Bees & Birds, by Aremy Stewart, 
mixed media on panel 
£125 each £200 for the pair.