Fine Shadings: 250 Years of Painting in Scotland

1 February - 16 March 2024

The definition of Scottish Art is wide and draws in artworks and artists with many kinds of association with Scotland. The pictures in this show illustrate not just topography, for which Scottish art is best known, but culture too: daily life, farming, fishing and religion. Within them are observations of artists whose familiarity with their subject is the very essence of the work. Hugh MacDiarmid put words to this in his poem, Scotland:


It requires great love of it deeply to read

The configuration of a land,

Gradually grow conscious of fine shadings,

Of great meanings in slight symbols,

Hear at last the great voice that speaks softly,

See the swell and fall upon the flank

Of a statue carved out in a whole country’s marble,

Be like Spring, like a hand in a window

Moving New and Old things carefully to and fro,

Moving a fraction of flower here,

Placing an inch of air there,

And without breaking anything.

So I have gathered unto myself

All the loose ends of Scotland,

And by naming them and accepting them,

Loving them and identifying myself with them,

Attempt to express the whole.