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The fine art of Sixties freedom;Arts


Liberation and Tradition: Scottish Art 1963-1975. until October 17.

Liberation and Tradition is the second of four exhibitions being organised by Aberdeen and Dundee city councils to trace the history of Scottish art from 1945 to 2000. Like the first show, this one is a cracker.

Fifty works are on display, mostly paintings but also some excellent sculptures, prints, photographs, constructions and conceptual pieces.

Spread through a couple of bright, airy galleries in the McManus, this is a good selection of what was being produced by Scottish artists during 1963-75, without being overwhelming. The scale, the content and the display should appeal to children more than the large, dimly lit show at Edinburgh's City Art Centre.

Most of the 35 artists featured are still working and in some cases - Elizabeth Blackadder, Eduardo Paolozzi, John Bellany and Alan Davie - are much better known now.

The Sixties was a period when many artists were consciously liberating themselves from the traditions of the past. This show reflects those changes, featuring, for instance, one of the first Earth's Surface works by the avant garde Mark Boyle and Joan Hills partnership. But it also includes the work of artists who were, apparently, content with tradition, such as portraits by David Donaldson and Alberto Morrocco, painted in 1969 and 1971 when they were in their fifties.

The show is complemented by a range of evocative, contemporary photographs of each of the artists as well as several filmed interviews and a wide array of art books for adults and children.

For more information on the useful primary school workshops based on the McManus Galleries exhibition, contact John Cairns on 01382 229473 4.

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