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For art generally across West Dunbartonshire see : index.asp?pageid=716911

Also see CLYDEBANK TOWN HALL : index.asp?pageid=715657

The West Dunbartonshire Council not only displays the works of others in temporary exhibitions, but has accumulated quite an interesting and valuable collection itself. To see what is on, refer to its FaceBook pages (link below).

Much of this valuable collection is historical, inherited, bequested or purchased over its entire existence. Art expresses an individual, but also defines a society, its history, social events, perceptions and ideals. West Dunbartonshire Council has works that record local development in time and community and also procures significant works from further afield from which we can learn and enjoy. This fascinating collection of fine art by local and nationally important artists spans 300 years. 

From one point of view, the acquisition of art by the Council is absolutely essential, progressively enriching its community culturally. But some may doubt this investment in times of financial challenges. in 2022 the Dumbarton and Vale of Leven Reporter announced that the Council was spending almost £75,000 on fine art for collection. A report confirming the purchase of more than a dozen works, as well as items by leading historical and contemporary female artists, acknowledged that the spending "could be negatively perceived" - but insists that any negative feedback from the purchases, made from a dedicated fund for 'cultural investment', will "be mitigated by community-focused programming".

Major works are on display almost permanently in such locations as the Council offices in Church Street, Dumbarton, but also form part of exhibitions such as in the galleries in the Clydebank Town Hall. 

The visit of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert to Dumbarton in 1847.

This enormous painting was displayed in the Municipal Buildings near Dumbarton Central Station for many years. It now hangs in the Civic Space within the Council offices in Church Street. 

Queen Victoria and Prince Albert paid a short visit to Dumbarton on 17th August 1847. Here they are seen being received at Denny & Rankin's shipyard by Provost Risk and Sir James Colquhoun, Lord Lieutenant of Dumbartonshire, in the presence of 38 dignitaries. Dumbarton Castle Rock is the dramatic backdrop. James Hope Stewart was a prolific, meticulous and painstaking artist. He made many separate watercolour sketches from memory and from special sittings before embarking on this large canvas.

The size of the painting meant that he had difficulty getting it exhibited. However, its sale was the means of delivering the artist from poverty. [Art UK]. Queen Victoria appears much taller than she really was. This is probably some diplomacy on the part of the artist to make her nearer the height of the other peopls (or she has high heels on or is standing on a box below that dress!). 

A picture by Joan Earley : "Skipping". [TR. WDC].

Joan Kathleen Harding Eardley (18 May 1921 – 16 August 1963) was a British artist noted for her portraiture of street children in Glasgow and for her landscapes of the fishing village of Catterline and surroundings on the North-East coast of Scotland. One of Scotland's most enduringly popular artists, her career was cut short by breast cancer. Her artistic career had three distinct phases.The first was from 1940 when she enrolled at the Glasgow School of Art through to 1949 when she had a successful exhibition of paintings created while travelling in Italy. From 1950 to 1957, Eardley's work focused on the city of Glasgow and in particular the slum area of Townhead. In the late 1950s, while still living in Glasgow, she spent much time in Catterline before moving there permanently in 1961. During the last years of her life, seascapes and landscapes painted in and around Catterline dominated her output. [Wiki].

DUMBARTON AND VALE OF LEVEN REPORTER : 15th January 2022. Tristan Stewart-Robertson

WEST DUNBARTONSHIRE ARTS AND HERITAGE FaceBook pages : https://www.facebook.com/WestDunbartonshireHeritage/

WEST DUNBARTONSHIRE COUNCIL : https://www.west-dunbarton.gov.uk/leisure-parks-events/museums-and-galleries/clydebank-museum/

WIKPEDIA : https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_Eardley

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