07.02.13 – 27.02.13


Union Gallery is pleased to announce an important, group exhibition of artworks celebrating the fascinating world of ornithology.  With works made specifically for the exhibition, the show brings together exquisite drawings and paintings by some of Scotland’s leading artists including Janet Melrose RSW, Jenny Matthews,  Mark Nicholas Edward, Dylan Lisle and Joyce Gun Cairns MBE.


In the Company of Birds is an exhibition inspired by a Janet Melrose painting of the same title, and is a must see exhibition for anyone who admires birdlife or who is interested in exploring our relationship with our feathered friends.  There are paintings of exquisite quality here, each artist using their talents to the utmost effect. In addition, the exhibition includes some wonderful sculpture from London-based artist Barbara Franc, and an evocative and haunting installation by Czech multimedia artist Marcela Trsova, entitled ‘The Messengers’.   Using copper wire and real bird wings, Trsova’s work is inspired by the mythical symbolism of birds throughout history – as the artist says: “Flight has always represented freedom from the physical restrictions of earthbound life and the ascent of the soul to the goods either through mystical experience or through death. Birds share something of the same symbolic meaning, but because they come from the skies they can also assume the role of messengers from higher powers, whether for good or ill”.  This is a fascinating and inspirational piece that merits viewing and critical comment.

Of the exhibition, Union Gallery Director Alison Auldjo says: “Each of the contributing artists has produced work that is not only beautiful, but is also a heartfelt representation of what the subject matter means to them and, in some cases, this has created work that is certainly challenging as well as highly decorative”.


In keeping with Union Gallery’s ‘art for everyone’ beliefs, and in common with the 2011 exhibition ‘Plight of the Bumblebee’, there will also be a display of bird-related drawings by children of some of the contributing artists – guaranteed to bring a smile to your face, as is the visit of the Gallery’s tame crow, Heathcliffe, over the weekend of the 9th and 10th February.


A fine, inspirational and enlightening exhibition for a cold Edinburgh February.