Award-winning artist and Wasps tenant Rhona Taylor’s exhibition Memoirs of a Spacewoman will mark the life and work of writer Naomi Mitchison (1897–1999), who spent the many years living in Carradale, where she was deeply involved in local life and the politics of the small fishing communities of the Clyde. Taylor has used Mitchison’s work as a focal point to encourage discussion around the historical relationship between the Clyde’s rural and urban areas, collecting responses and stories about the history of this relationship and how it might develop in the future. This research and development will culminate with a collective sculptural installation hosted at The Briggait – the city’s former fish market, and now a working home for artists and creators.
Naomi Mitchison was a prolific novelist, poet and playwright whose body of work spans an entire century, encompassing an array of genres and formats, including children’s literature, feminist science fiction and a semiautobiographical play. Her work was ahead of its time, exploring themes of self-determinism and equality across gender, race and class. She worked as a farmer and fisherwoman, skippering her fishing boat, the Maid of Morvern, and wrote extensively about her experience of living and working within a small fishing community.
Rhona Taylor is a multi-disciplinary artist whose work includes installations, painting, printmaking, photography and sculpture. Before studying painting at Edinburgh College of Art, she worked for several years as a newspaper journalist, and her artwork is strongly rooted in stories and storytelling. She makes work in response to particular places, often in areas that are perceived as remote or isolated, and the people that live and work there. She’s particularly drawn to the sea, coast, islands and the extreme reaches of land, and researching how those places influence and affect notions of identity.
Join the Clyde Fishermen’s Trust, Wasps and the artist Rhona Taylor for a two-day art, food and heritage event entitled The Festival of the Sea to celebrate the life and work of Scottish novelist Naomi Mitchison within the historical setting of the Briggait in Glasgow which served as Glasgow’s largest fish market for over 100 years. Rhona has used the work generated within the workshops she has led across the west coast of Scotland, as the basis for an exciting exhibition of works.
You can also learn about Wasps’ plans for The Briggait and the two halls that remain empty and mostly unused; the 1899 Hall and the 1904 Hall. Wasps developed about half of The Briggait Market Halls complex to create artists’ studios, office, and exhibition space for Glasgow’s arts community. Up to 150 creative people now work at The Briggait daily. The restored 1873 hall also hosts a range of cultural, community, and social events and activities throughout the year. Our plans are now focused on saving these halls and developing more space for creativity, more markets, more places to meet and more things to do, for the people of Glasgow and visitors to the city. Find out more about this phase of the development on your next visit, and read more on our website here.