New exhibition: Out of Their Heads

Celebration of architects who shaped Scotland

Coia sculpture
Jack Coia, designed Scottish churches (Photo: Terry Murden)

Architects and designers behind some of Scotland’s most admired buildings feature in a new exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery.

Paintings and sculptures of leading figures such as James Craig, designer of Edinburgh’s New Town, and the art nouveau pioneer Charles Rennie Mackintosh, are among the works in Out Of Their Heads: Building Portraits of Scottish Architects which opens this weekend.

Others whose buildings are better known than their designers include Jack Coia who was responsible for many of Scotland’s Roman Catholic churches.

The exhibition is organised by the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland (RIAS) and the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, and supported by the Scottish Futures Trust. It is a headline event in the year-long Festival of Architecture and the Year of Innovation, Architecture and Design.

DB Photography advert 2Christopher Baker, director of the Scottish National Portrait Gallery, said: “The variety and outstanding quality of Scotland’s architecture is a key element of its distinctive culture and international profile.

“This exhibition celebrates the extraordinary achievements of Scottish architects, ranging from the brilliant seventeenth century innovator Sir William Bruce to great contemporary figures, such as Kathryn Findlay.”

Neil Baxter, secretary and treasurer of the RIAS, and curator of the exhibition, described architecture as “a truly collaborative art” because it required the skills of many others to create a vision.

“This exhibition is about that creative process,” he said.

Sir Angus Grossart, chairman of Scottish Futures Trust, said: “This exhibition marks centuries of Scottish creativity and the contribution of some of our greatest architects.”

It runs from 11 June to 5 February. Admission free.





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