This summer Dovecot celebrates the artist Jock McFadyen’s 70th birthday year with Lost Boat Party an exhibition of paintings which describe the romance and grandeur of the Scottish landscape, alongside the urban dystopia for which the artist is known.
Born in Paisley, McFadyen (b.1950) has spent a lifetime exploring the sublime landscape tradition. His career connects the generation of abstract painters who taught him at Chelsea College of Art in the 1970s with an alternative strand of British realism. While paintings Mallaig and Estuary Music are almost minimalist, many of the paintings are void of human presence, instead inviting the viewer to inhabit the haunting and occasionally hostile panoramas of land and sea before them.
Curator Christina Jansen, says, McFadyen paints the exterior world with a cool detachment that carries an emotional punch, and this exhibition perfectly describes his approach – floating through the landscape to find and show the strange enigmatic portion only seen when looking for something else. The eponymous painting Lost Boat Party is a monumental work, depicting a seaside funfair which appears to have detached itself from the land and is slowly drifting out to sea. The metaphor for the human condition is unavoidable, and many of the paintings in the exhibition describe the sea with all its implications of threat and indifference, as well as painterly possibility.
Saturday 12 June, 11am ONLINE Curator Tour: Jock McFadyen’s Lost Boat Party
Wednesday 30 June, 6pm ONLINE Making The Mallaig Commission
Saturday 21 August, 11am ONLINE Curator Talk: the Lost Boat Party
Exhibition in partnership with The Scottish Gallery.
Images: Lost Boat Party, Jock McFadyen, 2020, oil on canvas, 152 x 339cm; The Last Party, Jock McFadyen, 2019, oil canvas, 80 x 120 cm. Pink Flats, Jock McFadyen, 2006, oil on canvas, 152 x 339cm. All images courtesy of Lucid Plane.