Writers in the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Edinburgh

  05 Apr '23   |  Posted by: Birlinn

We are about to host an inspiring and uplifting day for rights agents at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery in Queen Street, Edinburgh. While there, we hope the agents (who are travelling from all over the world to join us in Edinburgh) will find the time to enjoy paintings and sculpture of writers from Scotland, past and present.

Paintings they might spot include Alexander Moffat’s ‘Poet’s Pub’ with Norman MacCaig, Hugh MacDiarmid, Sorley Maclean, Iain Crichton Smith, Sydney Goodsir Smith, Edwin Morgan and Robert Garioch. And Alan Bold.

And ‘The Kelvingrove Eight’: Janice Galloway, Alasdair Gray, Tom Leonard, Bernard MacLaverty, Liz Lochhead, Alan Spence, Jeff Torrington and Agnes Owens by Calum Colvin

Or the writers in ‘Milne’s Bar’ by John Bellany. And ‘Ian Rankin in the Oxford Bar’ by Guy Kinder.

Individual paintings or busts feature throughout the gallerys and stairways: Walter Scott, Robert Burns, Robert Louis Stevenson, John Buchan, Muriel Spark, Edwin Morgan, Sir Compton Mackenzie, Ian Crichton Smith, Ian Rankin, Liz Lochhead, Jackie Kay, Denise Mina, Alexander McCall Smith, John Burnside, Naomi Mitchison, Derick Thomson, Susan Ferrier, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Robin Jenkins, Neil Gunn, George Mackay Brown and many more.

Our visitors will also find the stunning Processional Frieze in the Great Hall featuring 155 men and women deemed of the upmost importance to Scotland’s story in 1989 by the artist William Brassey Hole (not many women!).

And of course, they’ll also find key figures from history in paintings of Bonnie Prince Charlie (who’s story is retold in Nothing Left to Fear from Hell by Alan Warner), Mary Queen of Scots (as told in Homecoming by Rosemary Goring), The Murder of David Rizzio (as retold in Rizzio by Denise Mina).

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