Most of the patients and staff of the Royal Edinburgh Hospital will know the Artlink Creative Hub at the Glasshouses are temporarily closed and all workshops stopped during lockdown. However this did not mean that people creativity stopped! During our temporary closure we have kept in touch with everyone who attended the workshops and set weekly themes for them.
All the images in this post are from the very creative and productive group of people who attended the workshops on a regular basis. We are now planning to restart some limited activity, which we will extend as restrictions ease. Initially we will start with one to one activity with Anne Elliot, bookable in advance. We are currently getting the Glasshouses ready for this. Anne will let you know when this activity will start and how to book. Our aim is at some point to restart small group workshops, we do not have a timescale for this now but will put out information when we do. Anne cannot wait to get back to start working with people again.
If you want to get in touch to find out more about one-to-one tailored activity or volunteering at the Glasshouses, contact Anne Elliot at email@example.com
Dorothy is currently working on a new piece which is inspired by a painting she has of the BassRock. We love how she is capturing the monumental form of the rock itself. Dorothy says, “The Bass Rock is inspired by childhood memories of holidays and weekends spent in a caravan at North Berwick. I feel grateful for the knowledge I’ve received on different techniques and the sharing of ideas. It has been great via Zoom to receive weekly updates.”
Is Dorothy a wise old owl? we think so, though she may dispute the old part of that! We love the character Dorothy has managed to capture in the Owl. HOOT HOOT HOORAY! Dorothy says, “I have an affinity with owls and elephants for some reason!”
Anna is currently working on a piece inspired by Kilmanjaro. It’s not finished yet but you can see how its progressing and we will upload images of all the finished pieces at the end of the project. From a humble teapot to a vast landscape!
For this piece Anna took inspiration from the things around her, things that most people have like a teapot and a mug. We love the finished cushion, and it shows how everyday objects spark joy! Anna said,
“I was really not sure when I started this. It wasn’t something I would normally have thought of doing but I found myself enjoying making new stitches although I was never sure how it would turn out. It’s not perfect, but I quite like the finished product.”
The Edinburgh Landmarks exhibition has just finished at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital and we decided to create a small publication to celebrate the creativity of the participants. Each of the people who took part in the exhibition received a copy as a thank you for taking part, as most were not able to see their work on display in the exhibition, they all loved it and so do we. View a selection of works, as well as the publication itself.
Next in the Link Gallery is an exhibition of drawings by Albert Nicolson. A series of beautiful line drawings of hats created in Artlink workshops at the R.E.H. Some of you may remember them from the Mark Dion exhibition at the Talbot Rice Gallery in 2014 as part of Ever Present Past.
We are also talking to Hans K Clausen, Hospital Exhibitions Manager, Tonic Arts Programme about developing another exhibition to go into the REH. Watch this space.
We have started a drawing exchange with St John’s and Liberton Hospitals. The process is easy to take part in; there are 4 simple steps where patients start a drawing which is copied and added to by an artist. It is based on a surrealist drawing game that allows a drawing to change as more people add to it. We have simplified the game to make it work on busy wards.
Our partners in delivering the first part of the project are the Mental Health OT team and IPCU at St John’s and Kirsty MacFarlane, CN and Fiona Walker, DCN ward 4, Liberton Hospital. In the longer term, the ideas that emerge will inform a larger scale sculptural project in partnership with Edinburgh Sculpture Workshop. But for now, it is all about drawing. A doodle, a sketch, a painting. You start it; we photograph it and send it to an artist. If you are interested in finding out more or want to discuss becoming involved in the future development please contact Anne Elliot at firstname.lastname@example.org
The first phase has just finished, and we were delighted to have author Laura Marney as our first writer. Laura is a Scottish writer with a great sense of humour, as anyone who has read her second novel, ‘Nobody Loves a Ginger Baby’, will know! Laura mentored 6 people over a 10-week period, two of whom are NHS members of staff.
We were delighted to also have Merrick Pope working on the project with us, to support patients and make sure that we are following all the guidelines. Merrick is a Clinical Nurse Specialist, Self Harm Service at the Royal Edinburgh Hospital and has worked on writing projects in the past. There was lots of good dry witted banter between us all in the development and implementation of the project.
We have been really impressed by the commitment of the participants and the scope, range and skill of writing that has come out of phase one. We will be sharing those results in both text and audio podcasts in later posts, so please look out for them.
We are currently talking to Carol Paterson of the MAC (Meaningful Activities Centre) at the Western General, and we are excited about developing the next part of the project with them, delivering both the writing project and some training for staff.
We still have more capacity, so we would really like to hear from departments or members of staff at the Western General, Royal Infirmary or St Johns who would be interested in developing another writing project with us. Please contact Trevor on email@example.com to start those conversations.
Maggie is another long-term friend of the Artlink Hospital Arts Programme and has been a regular attendee at the workshops over many years. In the workshops Anne can hardly keep up with the paper supply for Maggie’s artworks and it proved no different during lockdown. Maggie has been super productive producing a vast array of exciting and vibrant artworks. There is lots to enjoy and feast your eyes on.
Joan is a long time friend of the Hospital Arts Programme and has been attending the workshops at the Glasshouses for many years. For anyone who knows Joan, they will know that lockdown is not going to put a stop to her creativity. Here you can see Joan displaying some of the works she had done over the last couple of months, being careful to socially distance of course.
Joan has created a series of fun Crafting with Joan cards which you can download from here, they contain all the instructions you need to craft your own creatures.