Art Hive # 2 at Ruthrieston Community Centre!

The second Art Hive event took place a few weeks back and proved to be another successful night, bringing together a nice array of people from different backgrounds and disciplines. This one took place at Ruthrieston Community centre in the old nursery space which was also the home of Temporary Studio a good while back (more about that here!). As with the first event Kelly from the Creative Learning team had organised a few guest speakers along with a practical jewellery making demonstration.

First up was a rather interesting talk by Shirelley Young, a local artist and maker who works with young offenders, using art and creativity to find a bit of purpose and to help them. This idea really resonated with me as art has been a source of healing in the past and has given me a real focus. Shirelley talk showed the power of her work, the stitched blanket depicting the castlegate was made by someone with substance abuse issues and various offences under their belt and yet when given the chance they managed to create something quite unique. Each patch of the blanket is actually a piece of denim which the artists carefully cut and stitched together. The piece went on to win an award but the artist was un able to collect it due to falling back into old habits. A common tale for many battling substance abuse but the blanket is a reminder of what they can achieve and I hope they can get back to that high point again. Shirelley also spoke candidly about the challenges she faces in the day to day in her line of work, for every stand out good moment there's a handful of difficult ones but the value and passion she puts into her work was inspiring.

Next up we heard from Angela Neilson who specialises in fabrics & marionettes. She learned most of her skills by completing a city & guilds down in Fife if I remember correctly where she learned about stitching and working with fabrics over a 2 year course. I guess most people would think of the Thunderbirds or Captain Scarlet when thinking about marionettes but Angela's characters were straight out of a fairy tale. As her character was passed around you could see everyone's faces light up a little and finally once it came to us we could see why! The level of detail was quite incredible, a new goddess inspired by the ocean and beaches where Angela likes to spend her time. Its interesting to hear how she came to her craft quite late in life, I think being in her 50s before having a bash and now she's running marionette workshops which you can find out more about here. So if the impulse takes you run with it, you're never too old to make a start.

The final talk of the evening came from Aubin Stewart, jewellery maker extraordinaire. The Ruthrieston shed is set up for jewellery making classes already and has all the necessary equipment including equipment for heating up metals, an essential part of manipulating the materials. We all stood enthralled as the blue flame slowly turned a piece of metal cherry red, allowing Aubin to manipulate and play with it as if a piece of paper. But she also displayed a selection of items she's made with a range of materials, some laser cut from plastic while others she'd created at her home studio. It was great to see a bit of Aubins process and to see how sometimes things not going to plan can actually lead to new breakthroughs or discoveries!

The night finished with a rounding up of opportunities to get creative and a few funding opportunities were highlighted, all of which you can check out on the Art Hive facebook page. I think my favourite part of the evening was chatting to strangers around our table about art, graffiti and calligraphy and how they intersect and cross over. After just returning from 10 days of Nuart in Stavanger I was worried about the holiday blues but thankfully Art Hive made us excited to be back! Be sure to check out their social media for up dates and the next Art Hive will be taking place at Seventeen in October!

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