Located in Lochmaddy, the main port of entry to North Uist, the Taigh Chearsabhagh Museum & Arts Centre is set in a landscape dominated by sea and sky and is situated on the shoreline of a marine conservation area. Formed in 1993 as a partnership between Comann Eachdraidh Uibhist a Tuath and the Uist Art Association, it has evolved into a thriving museum and arts centre that has as much to offer to visitors as it does to the local community.
Inspired by this unique island location, Taigh Chearsabhagh has a vibrant exhibition and outreach programme and aims to be a place where people can meet, share ideas, learn new skills and experience traditional culture first hand.
Arts at Taigh Chearsabhagh
Exhibitions in the centre’s two galleries feature both local and international artists and often centre around themes of island life - as well as drawing inspiration from the dramatic scenery and rich wildlife that can be found in the west coast of Scotland. Recent exhibitions have included:
A collaboration between artist Chris Dury and gallery curator/film maker Andy Mackinnon, the land and water project began in September 2009 when the pair undertook a two day journey across Uist by Canadian canoe. The resulting exhibition a year later included the installation of a suspended woven canoe, works made from peat and an interactive video installation called Breath - where members of the audience were invited to use a rowing machine whilst watching the footage.
The Land, Water and Language exhibition will be on display at Edinburgh’s Dovecot Studios throughout August.
Donald Ferguson was a local Gaelic-speaking artist whose promising career as a painter was tragically cut short with his untimely death in 2008.
Following on from a highly successful exhibition at Taigh Chearsabhagh in 2006 – where every painting was sold - the centre mounted a retrospective exhibition of his work in 2010 to celebrate his life and his contribution to the island community. A catalogue including essays on the artist was published to accompany the exhibition and an archive is soon to be presented on the Taigh Chearsabhagh website.
In 2009 Dutch artist Fred Schley was invited to the Outer Hebrides to undertake a residency in order to produce a body of work to exhibit at Taigh Chearsabhagh. The paintings he produced focused extensively on the island’s dramatic landscapes and isolated scenes. To commemorate the 80th anniversary of the evacuation of St Kilda, a publication to support the exhibition was made with the help of support from the National Trust for Scotland.
As well as exhibitions, the centre also puts on regular poetry & literature evenings, screens indie, arthouse & documentary films and provides valuable facilities for artists - including a print workshop, dark room and a digital production space. Students can even study visual art courses there through Lews Castle College (part of the University of the Highlands & Islands).
Uist Eco Film Festival
In a new intiative for 2011, Taigh Chearsabhagh collaborated with Sustainable Uist to create the first ever Uist Eco Film Festival, with the main theme being climate change and sustainability. The intention of the festival was to increase peoples’ understanding of global environmental issues and how these issues relate to island life.
Between the 29 April and 1 May, audiences were able to see an extensive programme of environmental films, including the UK premier of Climate of Change (narrated by Tilda Swinton) and the Oscar nominated Waste Land. There was also a programme of talks and panel discussions.
Taigh Chearsabhagh is a Creative Scotland Foundation Organisation and is also supported by Comhairle nan Eilean Siar. You can keep up-to-date with what’s going on at Taigh Chearsabhagh throughout the year on their website.
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Ealain Ghàidhlig - Gabh pàirt ann!
Tha Alba Chruthachail dealasach a thaobh solarachadh taic do dh’ealain agus cultar Gàidhlig traidiseanta agus nua-aimsireil. Tha sinn a’ tuigsinn gu bheil mòran daoine air an tarraing gu ionnsachadh agus cleachdadh a’ chànain tro bhith ag inntrigeadh agus a’ com-pàirteachadh ann an diofar chruthan de dh’ ealain Ghàidhlig, a’ gabhail a-steach ceòl, òran, dannsa, dràma agus litreachas.
Gaelic Arts - Play your part!
Creative Scotland is committed to supporting traditional and contemporary Gaelic arts & culture. We recognise that many people are attracted to learn and use the language by accessing and partaking in various Gaelic art forms including music, song, dance, drama & literature.