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The Stove Presents: Art Shorts

Saturday 4 May at 6.00pm
The Stove Arts Collective presents a programme of short films by and about local (or local-ish) art and artists.

InBetween Dumfries: As part of a national project exploring the role of the arts in shaping the future of market towns led by The Stove in collaboration with The University of Newcastle, five artists worked in and around Dumfries during 2012 to create works that examined place, identity and belonging. This 15-minute film details the works created by Mike Inglis, Hannah Brackston, Suzanne Parry-John, Marion Preez, and Lisa Gallacher, with commentary by the artists.

Stonypath Days: Shot on 8mm film in 1973, this film by Professor Stephen Bann of Bristol University gives a rare insight into the early period of Little Sparta, the artist’s garden created by Ian Hamilton Finlay and his wife Sue at Stonypath in the Pentland Hills. Accompanied by a four-minute interview with their son Alec Finlay and contemporary views of the garden commissioned in 2012 by TATE Media.

The Eskdalemuir Harmonium: A US-built harmonium is disintegrating in a farmhouse near Lockerbie. An intimate visual exploration of a much loved but decaying instrument accompanied by an interview with its current owner, this short film by sound artist and filmmaker Chris Dooks is the result of his repeated ‘pilgrimages’ to visit the dying device.

Booking info:

Robert Burns Centre Film Theatre, Mill Road, Dumfries DG2 7BE –
Ticket prices £6.30 (£4.70 conc) available from Box Office (01387 264808) or on the door.


Our Foundation Gathering

The ‘Foundation Gathering’ always sounded more like a cheesy Sci-Fi convention than an art event…..The Stove’s ‘Foundation Gathering’ has now  landed on earth complete with dry ice (or was that just folk breathing in the ‘bracing’ conditions) and wobbly flying saucers.

More than 60 folk turned out on Wednesday – drawn by an invitation to come and be part of the future of the arts in the region by shaping the idea of a membership that will be at the heart of the organisations operation and decision -making.

Phil Jones (Business Development Manager) gave a welcome and defined the Stove as a project with potential to be at the vanguard of a new genre of arts provision in Scotland – a social enterprise that aims to means for residents of Dumfries to play an active part in the future of their town.

Phil describes the Stove as ‘Two things: 1) A Building – fully accessible arts resource for general public and creative practitioners….and 2) An Organisation – delivering participative public arts projects and undertaking commissions in the region and nationally.

One of the Stove’s founder members Colin Tennant then gave a brief illustrated presentation of work completed by the group to date and their plans for the future. To date, The Stove has delivered a highly successful programme of public arts events including ‘First Foot’ (part of Big Burns Supper 2012), ‘Punkin’ the Jubilee’ (Guid Nychburris 2012) and the Dumfries Music Conference – which brought industry professionals to the town to explain the contemporary digital music scene to the regions young music entrepreneurs.

In 2013/14 The Stove will refurbish and open premises at 100 High St as a public arts centre, complete a sculpture commission in Creetown and work as one of three local partners delivering the inaugural Environmental Art Festival Scotland.

or the main part of the evening Andrew Lyon of the International Futures Forum led a workshop that started people working in small groups to make sculptures from a pile of recycled materials. Andrew’s organisation works to find creative ways of thinking about the future and he asked groups to build a  sculpture that illustrated ideas and hope they had for what The Stove could do for themselves and the wider community.

An amazing outpouring of creativity ensued and groups then explained to others what their sculpture represented. Andrew Lyon then skilfully gathered all these ideas together into a creative discussion about how The Stove could operate as a democratic organisation with a membership, a board and an ‘curatorial committee’. A general discussion followed and 43 people signed up as the initial membership of The Stove.

Membership is open to everyone and is free – if you would like to be a part of the innovative experiment in building a collaborative creative organisation for Dumfries and Galloway then please send an email to [email protected] and you’ll be sent a membership form.

The first Stove AGM is set for mid May 2013 where the membership will be invited to elect a board to run the organisation on their behalf.

News Project Updates

Creetown Appoints Nation’s Youngest Town Crier

A schoolgirl has become Britain’s youngest town crier – at the tender age of eight.

Evie Cloy found herself in with a shout when she turned up to a contest to find the next ‘bellman’ for the seaside town of Creetown in Dumfries. The town has been without a crier since 1962, when WW1 veteran James Blake died at the age of 74 after 33 years of service.

But not a single adult took part in the competition to find a successor, so up stepped Evie – with a very direct bid for the job. Looking the judges straight in the eye, she took a breath and yelled: “My name is Evie Cloy and I want to be the next town crier of Creetown.

One of the panel, Allan Lowden, the town crier from nearby Gatehouse, said: “Evie might have been the smallest contestant but she definitely had the biggest voice.” The youngster, who has been given a hand-made ceremonial jacket and will be appearing in the town over the next few months, said:  ”I’m really pleased. There hasn’t been a town crier in Creetown for 51 years, so I love my new job. “I was a bit nervous but once I started shouting I felt better.  I’m quite glad no grown-ups wanted the job.”

Her proud dad David, 45, said: “She’ll be making announcements at local events and fetes.

“There were two categories in the competition, over-16s and under-16s, but nobody over 16 turned up. It seems like the youngsters were more interested in it. “Evie’s chuffed. Her little sister Katie, who’s five, was very excited about the competition, but was a bit too shy to take part.”

Organiser Will Levi Marshall said: “It’s great that Creetown finally has a town crier again after all these years and we’re delighted that Evie will be doing the honours. “Recently we’ve been exploring different methods of communications throughout Creetown’s history, including flags, the ancient ferry route to Wigtown, flares, bell casting and, of course, reviving the tradition of the Town Crier.”

James Blake, Creetown’s last town crier, was something of a local legend. After his death in 1962, his obituary recorded that “as a bellman he had few equals, his fine resonant voice often being heard a mile away and visitors to Creetown often stared in amazement when they met him on his rounds.”

News Opportunities

Your Invite to Our Foundation Gathering

The Stove needs your help!

The Stove is getting itself properly organised for the future and needs your help to do this – we’re asking folk who are interested in the arts in D+G to join us for an informal evening to let us know how we are doing so far and what we could be doing better in the future. After we have all agreed a way forward everyone will be offered membership of The Stove (free).

So what has this got to do with you?

We believe The Stove can make a genuine contribution to the future of our region – for both the creative sector and the wider population.

Still wondering what it has to do with you?

The Stove is two things:

  1. A Building:
  • … you need to come to this gathering if:
    • You’d like to see a place in the centre of Dumfries where you can meet other creative folk, get info about what is going on locally and further afield.
    • You’d like to be able to hire affordable space to hold workshops/events.
    • You’d like to show/present/gig in a space dedicated to multi-disciplinary contemporary arts.
    • You’d like to rent a small serviced space in the centre of Dumfries.
    • You’re interested in being part of the artist team to work on a series of commissions integrated into the building
    • You want to know about progress with the building (we aim to have completed the necessary building work by the end of 2013 btw)

2. An Organisation:

  • You should come along if you are interested in:
    • Collaborating with other artists as part of teams to take on large commissions.
    • Bringing forward new ideas for projects/initiatives that need an ‘organisation’ to carry them forward (NB – one of The Stove rules is ‘if you have an idea you need to be prepared to do it yourself’).
    • If you are an organisation yourself and are looking to collaborate and share resources/expertise
    • Learning new skills by taking part in Stove projects
    • Building a creative career in Dumfries and Galloway
    • Encouraging early career folk to get started locally
    • Growing the ‘arts scene’ in D+G
    • If you are not part of the ‘creative sector’ but you are interested in working with our sector in your work (we can be pretty handy like).

The aim is find a creative solution that works for all of us to set up The Stove as the best thing it can be. By attending you will be offered the chance to build yourself into the Stove network from the beginning of this exciting new phase of the venture.

You do not need any expertise of any kind to take part – just enthusiasm and an open mind and heart.

Informal workshop led by Andrew Lyon till 7.30, refreshments and chat after

Please RSVP to [email protected] so we have an idea of numbers


Mr Bill Drummond on Film in Dumfries

An EXCLUSIVE from our friends over at The Commonty:

Last week we posted a wee film by John Wallace about his attempts to discover what Bill Drummond said in Dumfries when he performed his lecture ‘Why Andy Warhol is Shite’ at Greyfriars Church on November 8th as part of The Stove’s Inbetween:Dumfries event. Bill Drummond is notoriously camera shy (as John found out) – but today The Commonty received an anonymous package containing film footage of Bill Drummond apparently on the Auld Brig in Dumfries…..there is no explanation with the footage and we can only assume that either Bill was practicing for his performance, or that this was one of his legendary acts of contrariness to give a filmed interview to a stranger (or even one of the things a previous audience had voted that he should do?)

Either which way, we are truly grateful to our anonymous film-maker and present for your pleasure – exclusive footage of Mr Bill Drummond telling us why he believes Andy Warhol is Shite:

News Project Updates

What Did Bill Drummond Say in Dumfries?

World renowned contemporary artist Bill Drummond was in Dumfries last week where he presented a performance lecture called ‘Why Andy Warhol is Shite’. Eaglesfield film maker John Wallace was there that evening, but was ejected from the venue on Mr Drummond’s insistence that his work not be recorded in any way. 

Here is Wallace’s film about his attempts to discover what truths Bill Drummond was bestowing upon Doonhamers last Thursday night:

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