Arts & Culture

West End residents, do you have artwork linked to Clyde shipbuilding in your lofts?

By Ian Marland at

The Scottish Maritime Museum is asking for public help as it seeks to boost its nationally-significant collection.

Staff are keen to hear from people who may have works of art by artists born or living in Scotland and depicting a Scottish shipbuilding, engineering or coastal scene which would befit the growing collection.

Many families living in the West End will have ties in particular with companies and individuals that have played a part in the Clyde’s shipbuilding heritage.

Fiona Carmichael is curator at the Scottish Maritime Museum. Photo credit: Martin Shields.

The museum, which is based on the Harbourside in Irvine, Ayrshire, with a smaller museum in Dumbarton, has already collected over 40 works of art under a special project.

The museum’s first curator of art, Fiona Carmichael, said: “We are sure there must be some fascinating maritime art works held by members of the public who might want to see them cared for and on show as part of a national collection such as the Scottish Maritime Museum.

“There will be those who have art on display in their home but also those who might just remember work stored in the loft.

“Some with Clyde shipbuilders in their ancestry, for example, may even have one of those fabulous portrait busts or a painting of a boat their ancestor built, commissioned by them before the advance of photography.”

The SMMart project to develop an art collection to complement and enrich the nationally recognised collection of maritime heritage has been made possible by a grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s Collecting Cultures programme.

The new acquisitions include ‘The Pier at Cove – Loch Long’ by internationally renowned Scottish Colourist Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell.

‘The Pier at Cove – Loch Long’ was acquired with the additional assistance of Art Fund and the National Fund for Acquisitions.

The museum has also acquired works of art by George Wyllie, Kate Downie, Will Maclean, Joyce W. Cairns, Tom McKendrick, Benno Schotz and Patricia Cain amongst others.

Fiona said: “We’re leaving no stone unturned in our quest to create the best, nationally recognised maritime-based art collection we can through our SMMart programme.

“The collection already includes stunning works of art across a wide range of mediums from oil paintings, watercolours, drawings, and sketches through to photography, travel posters, sculpture, textiles and mixed media and installation work.”

The museum is looking for high quality artworks from the 1800s onwards. All works must be over ten years in age.

* Those with artworks for consideration should call Fiona Carmichael on 01294 278283.