Scotland + Venice 2007


Hosted by the Scottish Arts Council, National Galleries of Scotland and British Council, and curated by Philip Long, Scotland and Venice 2007 featured the work of Charles Avery, Henry Coombes, Louise Hopkins, Rosalind Nashashibi, Lucy Skaer and Tony Swain.

Scotland and Venice 2007 continued to build on a distinguished history of Scottish participation at the Biennale. Scottish artists have exhibited work in Venice since 1897 (the 2nd Biennale), when works by the Glasgow Boys and others were shown.

Artists that took part in Scotland + Venice 2007:

Charles Avery
Working across a range of media, Avery’s art is characterised by formal beauty, humour and a spirit of philosophical enquiry. Avery’s most high profile work to date is his ongoing Islanders project, in which over a ten-year period he has described in drawing, painting and sculpture the topology and cosmology of an imaginary island, inspired by his childhood living in the Inner Hebrides. Avery was born in 1973 in Oban. Based in London, he is represented by doggerfisher/Susanna Beaumont, Edinburgh; Galleria Sonia Rosso, Turin and Galeria S.A.L.E.S, Rome.

Henry Coombes
Henry Coombes’ work is concerned with investigating entrenched political, cultural and class issues. Film, oil paint and watercolour are used to seduce the viewer into familiar and wholesome images, which on closer inspection reveal a dark and subversive subtext. Coombes was born in London in 1977 and completed his BA at Glasgow School of Art in 2002. He is based in Glasgow and represented by Sorcha Dallas, Glasgow.

Louise Hopkins
Using a variety of materials such as furnishing fabric, newspapers, song  sheets, maps and comic strips as the basis for her works, Louise Hopkins’ art can at first appear playful and sensuous. Her primary intention, however, is not one of embellishment, but of disruption. Her use of paint to alter the meaning of the original material on which she  works is disorientating and at times disturbing. Hopkins was born in Hertfordshire in 1965. She studied at Newcastle-upon-Tyne Polytechnic  and Glasgow School of Art, where she completed her MFA in 1994. She is based in Glasgow and is represented by doggerfisher/Susanna Beaumont, Edinburgh and Andrew Mummery, London.

Rosalind Nashashibi
Using primarily film and video, but also photography and printmaking, observation of people and their activity is the starting point for Rosalind Nashashibi’s work. In her films, an experience of time passing and a layering of gestures and patterns are key recurring motifs, as is her interest in working across cultures, in Palestine, New York and elsewhere. Born in Croydon in 1973, Nashashibi studied at Sheffield University and Glasgow School of Art, where she completed her MFA in 2000. She is based in London and is represented by doggerfisher/Susanna Beaumont, Edinburgh and Harris Liebermann, New York.

Lucy Skaer
Lucy Skaer works conceptually and in three and two dimensions. In the latter she commonly utilises imagery which she finds in photojournalistic reportage. Working on paper – large stretches that in scale resemble unfurled banners, flags or giant scrolls – she draws in graphite, adding enamel paint, ink and gold leaf, producing images which appear fluid and shifting, and open to interpretation. Skaer also creates public interventions and is a founding member of the artists’ collaborative group, Henry VIII’s Wives. Born in Cambridge in 1975 Skaer studied at Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1997. She is based in Glasgow, and has recently spent extended time in Berlin, Amsterdam and  New York. Skaer is represented by doggerfisher/Susanna Beaumont, Edinburgh.

Tony Swain
A sheet or cut section of newsprint provides the basis for Swain’s meticulously executed paintings, which offer us a view into a complex and surreal private world. Using the disconnected images found across such a spread, Swain works over this, embellishing imagery, distorting and extending perspectives and introducing new figurative and abstract imagery to produce works which are mesmeric and intriguing.
Swain was born in Lisburn in Northern Ireland in 1967 and studied at Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1990. He is based in Glasgow and is represented by The Modern Institute/Toby Webster Ltd, Glasgow.