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November: New Beginnings & Fond Memories at 100 High Street 

November’s here! For all its drizzly driecht, soggy leaves and howling breeze, it’s all go for a month of dance and exhibition, climate chats and birthday celebrations! 

But first…you might have heard about COP26. 

Yes, the glitterati of global politics will be arriving in Glasgow, in all their blue blazered, shooder-pads and pouting. Not to mention the news crews and protestors, police vans and placards, it all feels a little bit nerve-wracking. (Yes, just what we need from this year, another thing to worry about!).

So while the whole wide world tumbles on to George Square and Kelvingrove, we want to ask; what does all this mean for us down here?

A Doonhamer’s Guide to the End of the World

Creative Spaces are hosting a series of conversations, workshops and creative activities for people under 30 to share, collaborate and make their ideas heard in the big climate conversation. Working with Historic Environment Scotland the programme explores climate through story and myth, unearthing our local history to see what lessons can be learned from our past to guide the future we’ve yet to take.

Alongside this, Reel To Real, the Stove Cafe’s monthly film night, will be screening two films exploring climate, loss, distance and relocation, from Africa to Ireland. Our Reel To Real film nights include some scrumptious pre-movie scran courtesy of stew-maestro Marcus, from 5PM through till 6:30!

But that’s not all…

Atlas Pandemica: Maps to A Kinder World

First beginning in June of 2019, Atlas Pandemica: Maps to a Kinder World is a compendium of 10 projects led by Dumfries & Galloway based creative people exploring different themes highlighted by life during the COVID pandemic, working directly with people in the region, it focussed on the impacts and learning from the community’s experience of the evolving pandemic. 

The project is now drawing to a conclusion, aside from the many outputs each of the commissioned artists have shared, a collection of 10 maps, based on each of the project’s findings will be unveiled as part of ‘After the Pandemic’, Glasgow’s creative and cultural fringe at COP26. For more information on the project please visit www.atlaspandemica.org

Are ye dancin? We’re askin!

Join us on Saturday 6th November for an intimate evening of dance performance and conversation as DG Dance celebrate the end of their first season touring pop up dance across Dumfries and Galloway.

Martin McKeown, taken as part of Sanquhar Arts Festival.

The evening will include a performance of Matthew Hawkin’s Triple Echo, sharing excerpts from new screendance research with Emma Dove inspired by Emma Jayne Park’s touring performance And Now We Unravel, Again, and a performance of Louise Ahl’s newly premiered work heartbeats, fresh air, gestures, time. 

This will be followed by an open conversation with lead artist Emma Jayne Park, and company dancers Claire Pencak, Jorja Follina and Malcolm Sutherland.

The following week, we’ll be showcasing the final UK screening of Penny Chivas’s ‘Burnt Out‘ this year, followed by an opportunity to discuss the work with the artist.

Brian Hartley

With original music by Paul Michael Henry, interwoven with the delicately detailed lighting design of David Bowes, this is an autobiographical dance-theatre work from the daughter of an environmental geochemist, bringing together fact and personal account. ‘Burnt Out’ is at once an intimate personal story and a universal meditation on our changing climate.

Water you up to? 

The Dumfries Fountain Project: Research & Studio Work 

A pop-up exhibition at The Smithy, 113-115 High Street, hosted by artist Alex Allan. Allan has been working with the Dumfries Fountain Project coordinated by the Stove Network, exploring, and designing a proposal for a permanent piece of public art to be situated by the Dumfries Fountain to complement the historic landmark.

You are invited to consider the research gathered during their time in Dumfries, experiment and play with ideas and materials from the studio and contribute your own thoughts to the work. What would you like from a new piece of public art in the centre of the town? This is a unique chance to hear from the artist themselves and learn more about this timely and fascinating project. Come on in!

Dumfries Fountain Project: Film and Soundtrack Premiere

The Smithy, 113-115 High Street
Saturday, 13 th November 5-7pm

Join us for a celebratory evening marking the conclusion of our two Holywood Trust commissioned artist projects, with a sharing of the short documentary film created by filmmaker Patrick Rooney, and film soundtrack by musician and composer Jenna Macrory.

After the screening we’ll be hearing from our two commissioned artists about their experiences with the project. Light refreshments provided. There is limited capacity available for the event so please sign up via Eventbrite to let us know if you would like to attend.

It’s our birthday and we’ll print if we want to…

Can you believe we’re 10 years old? Seems like just yesterday, the Stove were chalk painting flagstones and launching a coo into the Nith (not an actual coo, don’t fret). 

10 Year Celebrations 

Join the Stove as we celebrate our 10th Birthday! We’ll be turning the Stove Cafe into a t-shirt printing factory where you can print your own 10th Anniversary t-shirt, and the cafe will be open with a special menu (yes, there will be cake!).

Hang on, theres maire!

B-B-B-Brave New Words

Our monthly open mic night for fresh words spoken, sung, shot, signed or silenced returns. This month’s theme is: ENCOUNTERS

U18 Acoustic Cafe returns

Our pals Dave Bass and the magnificent Dumfries Music Collective, fresh off the heels from their stellar 2021 conference are finally back to takeover the Stove Cafe with the U18 Acoustic Cafe.  Featuring a line-up of fresh voices from the region, the afternoon is open to all to enjoy. More info coming soon! 

Doughlicious

D’ough! Doughlicious are back in the building! Share ideas and recipes whilst breaking bread with like-minded folks. Featuring practical workshops exploring techniques and style, for those that kneed that extra bit of help and radical recipes for aficionados, from chapati to brioche! 

Women Signwriters Assemble! 

Dumfries Women’s Signwriting Squad are back again with the wee monthly meet-up. This session, open to beginners of all levels, will teach you the basics of signwriting. A popular event so sign up to guarantee your spot!

In Other News

Dark Time!

It’s not as gloom as it sounds, we promise. Dark Time is our yearly switch off, where we re-group as a team, drink too much coffee and chat all things Stove. From planning 2022, pouring over our members feedback (thanks by the way) and reflecting on a year unlike any other.

As we draw some breath from the run of festivals and projects, from wild geese to multiverses, we’re making time to ask some important questions. From who uses the Stove, to what we can offer our community and what themes might take us forward into the new year. We divide our conversations into three areas, which include:

Are you interested in Dark Time? Let us know by emailing [email protected]

…Phew! And breathe…

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Testing, testing… anybody there?

Welcome back Dumfries. This month we’re ready to open our doors once again with a month-long programme of inspiring events from conversations to workshops, creative activities and talks alongside the long-awaited return of our monthly film night Reel To Real, as well as the unmissable Brave New Words. We want to be extra safe as we navigate our way back into the world of live events so the way of doing things is a little bit different. First of all, you’ll need a ticket. You can see the full list of events here, so if you’d like to attend, you’ll need to book your place. And we’re not out of the woods yet so we’ll have some extra safety measures in place when you arrive, to protect everyone in our community. 

This month it’s all about testing new activity. We want to see how we can have a blended approach to our live events. So whether that’s a mix of live streaming to walks outdoors, we want to play with new ways of coming back together, that’s both safe and creative. Who knows, some of it might stick. So why not join us as we retrace our steps back to the world of live events…

Dumfries Fountain Project

The Dumfries Fountain Project goes live this month with the first of our workshops with writer JoAnne McKay, and a conversation evening exploring the history and heritage of the fountain!

Creative Spaces

Creative Spaces welcomes you back to our blended model of bi-monthly workshops we shall be exploring the link between mental wellbeing and creativity through the concept of the Tortured Artist.

Brave New Words

You heard us right, it’s back! We’re going live on the last Friday of the month, in The Stove Cafe and The Stove Network’s Youtube channel.

Reel to Real Cinema

This month we are discussing film and food in The Stove Cafe with filmmaker Zev Robinson, and his short film The Glasgow Diet

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This is not just a car park.

An evening of short artist films, screened outdoors in our backdoor Greenspace, accompanied by freshly baked pizzas created by Shed Therapy’s Gavin Philips with support from some of our foodie Stovies!

Greenspace Reel to Real
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greenspace pizza

Our Greenspace project is an ongoing project within the Stove that looks to transform the backdoor area of the Stove creating a warm and welcoming level access to the building, as well as providing bike parking, and options to populate and take over an otherwise disused and neglected space within the town centre.

As part of our first outdoor Reel to Real, we screened a selection of films by local filmmakers, focusing on artists based across Scotland, including:

Emma Dove’s On Another Note
Colin Tennant’s Portrait of an Artist featuring our own Matt Baker
John Wallace’s Dumfries InBetween

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greenspace pizza
greenspace pizza


Thank you to everyone who helped out, and the filmmakers for kind permissions to screen their films. We hope to do more events in our Greenspace later in the year! This event was part of our Rabbie Burns Time – a week of events and activities celebrating the Bard and the Big Burns Supper in Dumfries. Photography credit: Kirstin McEwan

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greenspace pizza
greenspace reel to real
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Blueberry Soup’s Red Cards

As part of our ongoing Reel to Real cinema series, on Thursday 21st of April, we hosted a screening of Blueberry Soup, a documentary exploring the constitutional change in Iceland following the 2008 financial crisis, and the re-invention of democracy through the rewriting of the nations constitution.

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Following the film screening, there was a Q&A with the films director, Eileen Jerrett via Skype live from Seattle.

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The red cards had become popular during recent protests in Iceland following the Panama Papers release, and caused Eileen to begin her #messagestoIceland, sending supportive messages to those still pushing for constitutional change in the country.

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Reel to Real is our regular cinema series of issue based and topic films, followed by open discussions, workshops and food share events encouraging our audiences to engage more indepth with some of the themes and topics discussed in the films screened.

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