McKechnie celebrates Ailsa Craig lighthouse

Ailsa Craig lighthouse
Ailsa Craig lighthouse

The McKechnie Institute in Girvan is celebrating the famous Ailsa Craig Lighthouse which is now 130 years old.

This landmark display includes items on special loan from the Mull of Galloway Lighthouse Museum.

Built in 1886 by engineers Thomas & David A Stevenson the lighthouse flashes white every four seconds, is 18 metres tall and has a range of 17 nautical miles.

The White Tower is 11 metres high and there are 37 steps to the top of tower.

The 35th Annual ‘Open Art Exhibition’ is also running until September displaying works from artists living and working in Girvan and the surrounding areas.

It’s been a fantastic summer of art so far in South Ayrshire and thanks to the Council and The Maclaurin Trust, it just gets better and better.

There have been some great exhibitions with the likes of Ayr, Photographic Society treating us to some of their award winning prints; we have also had sculptures with a modern twist and inspiring art and design from students studying the visual arts at Ayrshire College.

Last but certainly not least, it has been a privilege to host one of Scotland’s most successful and best loved contemporary artists - Jolomo who brought his major exhibition ‘The Magical Light of the West’ to the Maclaurin Galleries – over 5000 people visited the galleries for this month long exhibition.

But don’t worry, there is plenty more to come as South Ayrshire welcomes internationally renowned artist Margaret Hunter who grew up in Irvine and attended the Glasgow School of Art in the mid 1980’s.

Margaret Hunter returns to the Maclaurin Gallery which supported and encouraged her early career. Her latest exhibition ‘Duality’ charts her development into the highly accomplished artist we know today.

The free exhibition runs at the Maclaurin from Sunday 20th August – Sunday 8th October.

The artist is leading free walks and talks throughout the exhibition, and there is also a special 2 day art workshop. With help from the Council, she will also be working with pupils from Belmont Academy.

For more details on the dates and times of the public events please contact Rozelle House on 01292 445447 .

The Maclaurin Gallery is also gearing up to play host to the impressive James Klinge who uses stencils to create intense and intricately detailed works of art.

This is Klinge’s South Ayrshire debut.

He has pulled out all the stops for the exhibition which features multi-layered stencils to create awe inspiring works which have to be seen to be believed.

Over the years he has perfected the technique leading to some truly epic creations. In 2015 he was commissioned to create “Tiger Style”, a vast mural on a wall along the banks of the Clyde.

The free exhibition which runs at the Maclaurin Galleries from Saturday 2nd September – Sunday 8th October will feature some of his latest creations as this young man grows and develops as an artist.

Keep space in your diaries for some other must see exhibitions. Lennox & Wylie will be showing something special inspired by the Ayrshire coast and our villages and towns from Sunday 6th August to Sunday 1st October. James Hutcheson will also feature at Rozelle House Galleries marking an illustrious career as graphic designer, typographer and cartoonist.

Councillor Brian McGinley, Economic Development, Tourism and Leisure Portfolio Holder for the Council said “Once again South Ayrshire is attracting some giants from the world of art and design. This summer we have been spoiled for choice with so much talent on display and all for free. With international artists keen to exhibit here, our local artists are sure to be inspired and we are keen to support their endeavours too. Hopefully we can attract even more visitors before the end of summer which is also good for the local economy.”