Approved: 10.05.2012

Gillian Adair Mcfarland

Art therapist, Artist, Maker, Project manager, Researcher

Approved: 10.05.2012

I am interested in the working with processes and the complexities of marks, making visible the actions of the creative process. An emphasis is placed on the the act of looking, engaging the process of the sustained gaze, the checking out of assumptions and making sense of relationships in terms of time and space.

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    Artist Statement

    I am interested in the working with processes and the complexities of marks, making visible the actions of the creative process. An emphasis is placed on the the act of looking, engaging the process of the sustained gaze, the checking out of assumptions and making sense of relationships in terms of time and space.

    Working across disciplines, I reflect on influences from science and the natural world working with materials that invite investigation, exploring spaces between things, transitions in states of being and responses to the passage of time. I am informed by the process of observing, noticing discrepancies and seeing where structures, patterns and meanings emerge.In the making of artwork physical and sensory experiences create a tacit knowledge and understanding and bring a narrative that connects us.

    CV & Education


    Summary....I am a practicing artist and state registered art therapist with experience working across health, education, museums and curation.  I have delivered front-line clinical services in various adult and child mental health settings; have worked as artist in residence in a university setting, focused on supporting artists to secure research grant support; have worked in a leading museum providing opportunities to engage the public and health communities with historical and contemporary art; and have led programmes in the voluntary sector.

    I am interested in the parallels and connections that can be drawn between art and science and have collaborated on a range of inter-disciplinary research projects with astronomers, geneticists and social scientists.  This has resulted in invitations to participate in a wide range of national and international exhibitions and conferences.

    I have  served as a member on a number of boards, most recently with election to the Society of Scottish Artists Council. I have been involved in fund-raising, have developed strategic plans, and have managed staff and budgets.

    Throughout my career I have continued to practice my own art, having exhibited widely, won a number of national prizes, and delivered numerous successful solo shows across the UK.

    Graduated from Saint Martins School of Art, London BA Hons 2.1


    2018–present                        Elected Professional Member of the SSA (Council Member)

    2018 –present                       Director, City Glass Studios, CIC

    2018 –present                       Board Member, Bright Sparks Mental Health Charity

    2018 –present                       Artist Consultant: Rethink Your Mind ,Mental Health Project.

    2017–19                      Advisory Board, Attenborough Arts Centre, University of Leicester

    2017–19                      Advisory Board, Leicester Cathedral Revealed

    2017–19                      Honorary Research Fellow, School of Genetics, Uni of Leicester

    2015–19                      Artist in Residence, De Montfort University, Leicester

    2014–present              Leicester Society of Artists (Council Member)

    2010–14                      Arts Educator, Holburne Museum and Art Gallery, Bath

    2010 -16                      Trustee and Education Lead, Bath Artists Studios

    1997–09                      Lead Art Therapist, Tayside NHS Trust, Perth and Dundee

    1998 -01                      Young People’s Counsellor, Family Mediation, Tayside NHS Trust

    1997- 01                      Art Therapist Sycamore Project, Aberlour Childcare Trust

    1996–98                      Artist in Residence, Tayside NHS Trust

    1990–96                      Freelance Arts Educator

    1986–90                      Curator Contemporary Touring Art Gallery, Fife Education


    Awards & Funded Projects

    2020                            Criminal Quilts: Collaboration with Ruth Singer

                                        Hutton Institute, Research Funding, Invergowrie,Dundee

                                        Harbour: Collaboration with Annie Cattrell and Leila Galloway

                                        Confluence: Spirit of the North: Japanese/Scotland, artists exchange with                                        Su Grierson and Yoshiko Maruyama

    2019                           Visual Artist and Craftsmaker Award, with Fife Contemporary & Creative                                           Scotland

    2018                           ‘Developing your Creative Practice’, Arts Council Artists Award

                                       Royal Scottish Academy, WASP Residency Prize

                                       Leicester Society of Artists, George Pickard Prize (Gold)

    2017                           Bath Fringe Arts Prize

                                       Arts Council Funded Research Project, ‘Drawing DNA’

                                        RAS Funding for C&C Project Development and Workshops

                                       Hope Scott Funding for C&C Project

    2016                           Arts Council Funded Research Project, ‘Curiosity and Creativity’

                                       Arts Council Funding ‘Little Selves’ Leicester Society of Artists      

                                       Royal Astronomical Society Funded Research Project, ‘Curiosity and                                               Creativity’

    2015                           Arts Council Funded Research Project, ‘Experiment’

                                       Shortlisted for Attenborough Arts Prize, Leicester Open

    2013                           Salisbury Arts Centre, Prize Winner

                                       Creativity Works, My Time My Space. Lead Artist

                                       Creativity Works , Fresh Art. Delivering arts workshops across the                                                     Museums  of Bath for mental health service users

    2012                           Fringe Arts Bath, Open Winner

    1998                           Society of Scottish Artists, Council’s Choice

    1986                           Royal Scottish Academy, Scottish Artists Purchase Award


    Solo Shows

    2020                            Creativity and Curiosity, An Lanntair ,Lewis

    2019                           Moon 50, Glasgow Science Centre

                                       Moons, Creativity and Curiosity, Newarke Houses Museum, Leicester

    2018                           44AD Gallery, Bath, ‘Process’

    2017                           Byre Gallery, Millpoint, Cornwall, ‘New Art’

                                        &Gallery, Edinburgh

    2016                            Leicester Society of Artists, Cank St Gallery, Leicester

    2015                            Bridge of Allan, Scotland, @Collective

    2014                            Buchelli Gallery, Bristol, ‘Here to There’

    2013                            Bath Artist’s Studios, ‘Blood will Boil’

    2000                            Kellie Lodging Gallery, Pittenweem Festival

    1997                            Scottish Artists Gallery, Edinburgh


    Selected Exhibitions

    2020                           Society of Scottish Artists, Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh

                                       Art of the Cosmos, Pasadena, USA

                                       Dark Skies, An Lanntair, Isle of Lewis

    2019                           Interdisciplinary Practice, University of Amsterdam

                                       Moons 50, Greenwich Royal Observatory, London

                                       Society of Women Artists, Mall Galleries, London

                                       Leicester Society of Artists, New Walk Museum

                                       & Gallery, Edinburgh

                                       Palimpsest An Lanntair, Isle of Lewis

                                       Antiphony Leicester Printmakers Workshop

                                       Affordable Art Fair, Battersea, London

    2018                           Berlin Science Week, Zeiss Gross Planetarium, ‘Falling Walls’

                                       National Space Centre, Leicester, ‘Creativity and Curiosity’

                                       Society of Scottish Artists Open, Edinburgh

                                       The Edge, Bath University, ‘Visions of Science’

                                       Royal Scottish Academy Open, Edinburgh (prize winner)

                                       Affordable Art Fair, London

                                       Arts Science, Leicester Science Week, ‘Brief Encounters’

                                       Leicester Open 29, New Walk Museum and Art Gallery

    2017                           Road to the Stars, Santiago, Spain, ‘Creativity and Curiosity’

                                       Christ College, Cambridge, ‘Creativity and Curiosity’

                                       Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge, ‘Creativity and Curiosity’

                                       Blyth Gallery, Imperial College, London, ‘Creativity and Curiosity’

                                       Dundee Science Centre, Dundee, ‘Creativity and Curiosity’

                                       Art Science, Humboldt Universität, Berlin, ‘Appealing to the Populous’

                                       Genetics Residency Exhibition, University of Leicester, ‘Process’

                                       &Gallery, Edinburgh, ‘Outlook’

                                       New Walk Museum and Art Gallery, Leicester, ‘Little Selves’

                                       Royal West of England Academy, ‘Drawn’

                                       Walford Mill, Dorset, ‘Senses’

                                       Leicester Open, Old Library, Leicester

    2016                           Society of Scottish Artists, Edinburgh, ‘Converge’

    Royal Scottish Academy Open, Edinburgh

    Cuppola Gallery, Sheffield

    2015                           Salisbury Art Centre, Salisbury, ‘Paper’

    Cuppola Gallery, Sheffield, ‘Paper’

    Leicester Open 26, Leicester

    Rosalux, Minneapolis, USA

    2014                           Society of Scottish Artists Annual Exhibition, RSA Edinburgh

    Cank Street Gallery Open, Leicester

    Bath Artist Studios, Bath, ‘Forest of Imagination’

    Bath Artist Studios, Bath, Building Volumes

    Holburne Museum and Art Gallery, Bath, ‘Recollection’

    2013                           Touch Art Fair, Frieze, London

    Bath Artist Studios, ‘Tamed Marks’

    Derwent Art Prize, Mall Galleries, London

    RSA, Edinburgh

    RWA, Drawn, Bristol

    Aberdeen, ‘Fabric of the Land’

    Edinburgh, ‘Fabric of the Land’

    Salisbury Open, Salisbury Arts Centre

    Fringe Arts Bath, Bath

    Buchelli Gallery, Bristol

    2012                           Cork St Open, London

    Aberdeen, ‘Fabric of the Land’

    Fringe Arts Bath Open, Bath

    Society of Scottish Artists, Annual Show

    2000                           James Murray Art, Perth Museum and Art Gallery

    Roseangle Gallery, Dundee, ‘Coffin Exhibition’

    Seagate Gallery, Dundee, ‘Three Women’ Rosie Summertion, Lynne Nealon and Gilllian McFarland

    1987                           Edinburgh Scene, Edinburgh City Art Centre

    SSA Annual Show, Council’s Choice Prize

    RSA Summer Show, Scottish Artists Award

    Smith Biennial, Stirling Gallery



    2019                                        The Bothy, WASPs Residency, Shetland

    Hive, Women Returning to Arts Practice Collective, The Edge, Bath

    2016–19                      Artist in Residence, De Montfort University, Leicester

    2017                            Eight-month residency, School of Genetics, University of Leicester

    2014                            Fringe Artists Bath, Bath Artists Group Residency

    1997–2000                  Artist in Residence, Murray Royal Hospital, Perth

    1993                            Artist in Schools Residency, Fife

    1992                            Artist in Residence, Highland Printmakers, Inverness





    2000                           Design and carving of Chair, presented to Dundee University on the                                                 establishment of a Chair of Women Studies 


    Lectures and Talks

    2020                            Hebridean Dark Skies, An Lanntair

    2019                                        Moons 50 Royal Observatory, Greenwich

                                        Moons, Glasgow Science Centre, Glasgow

                                        WebinArt, Live Facebook Event, LCB Depot            

                                        Hebridean Dark Skies, An Lanntair, Lewis

                                        Interdisciplinary Practice Conference, Amsterdam University

                                       CAMRAS Meeting , Dwingelwoo Radio Telescope, Netherlands

                                       Opticks, Live Facebook Event. StudionAme

    2018                           Royal Astronomical Society, London

                                        Zeiss Gross Palnetarium, Berlin Science Week

                                        DeMontfort University On Being an Artist

    2017                            Special Interest Group Independent Art Therapy, hosted at DMU

    "Creativity & Curiosity", Dundee Contemporary Arts, Visual Research Centre

                                      "C&C", Road to the Stars Conference (ISAP X/Oxford XI/SEAC   25th),                                             Centro de Estudios Avanzados, Santiago de Compostela, Spain

                                       Panel Discussion, Creativity & Curiosity, Cambridge Science Festival

                                        C&C Creative Workshops, Institute of Astronomy, Cambridge Science                                              Festival

                                       On Collaborative Practices, De Montfort University with Graeme Hawes

    2016                           Making Visible: Making Art with Rural Communities: conversation  between                                      Dr Julie Crawshaw and Carolyn Black

                                       Making Visible: Art in the Rural – co-presented with Leila Galloway,                                                   Attenborough Art Centre, Leicester, supported by CVAN East Midlands


    2020                           Scotsman Arts Review ,Duncan McMillan SSA,VAS Exhibition Royal                                                 Scottish Academy 11/01/20

    2019                            Tacit,  LCB Design Season, Leicester, Ruth Singer

    2018                            Phyart Birmingham University

                                        Creativity & Curiosity, Catalogue, Berlin Science Festival

                                        Process, Catalogue, Genetics Residency and exhibition, Ruth Singer

                                        Creativity & Curiosity, Astronomy & Geophysics Magazine

     2017                           Creativity & Curiosity, catalogue

                                         Nowhere to Somewhere Exhibition Catalogue &Gallery

    1997                            James Murray, Perth Museum and Art Gallery

                                        Coffins, 6 Women Artists, Roseangle Gallery, Dundee (TV)
                                        Elements, iScience Magazine, Imperial College, London

    1987                            Scotsman Review, RSA Exhibition, Edinburgh

                                        Dundee Courier, Fiona Column

    1886                            Tidal Beginnings Catalogue, Fife Education Authority

    1985                            Trees Catalogue, Cheltenham Art Gallery

    Works Currently in Private Collections

    De Montfort University

    Fife Education Authority

    Tayside NHS Trust

    Dundee University

    Kings College London

    Dana Oil, Aberdeen