Fife Tourism Partnership

Gallery’s brush with great artists makes a big impression

28 February 2024

An exhibition of artistic gems from one of Scotland’s finest collections of paintings is being warmly received by gallery-goers in Dunfermline.

More than 500 people who have viewed highlights from the collection managed by cultural charity OnFife have left glowing reviews on comment cards at the venue.

Curators hosting the Brushstrokes show at Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries say the positive response proves there is a healthy appetite for art exhibitions in the city.

Brushstrokes, which showcases work by nationally renowned painters, is the biggest art exhibition to be hosted by the award-winning venue since its opening in 2017.

The display of 66 works, which opened in December, follows the success of the Glasgow Boys exhibition in 2018 and the Edinburgh School show a year later.

Many visitors have expressed a wish to see more art on show at the venue: “What a lovely way to spend time. The layout and range of paintings is delightful and I can't wait to revisit.”

“This place does great things,” wrote one visitor. “Congratulations on another fabulous exhibition. It brings a lot of joy … and something interesting to Dunfermline.”

Brushstrokes features works by the ever-popular Scottish Colourists, the Glasgow Boys and the renowned landscape artist William McTaggart.

Included in the blend of traditional and modern works are paintings by acclaimed artists such as Joan Eardley, Anne Redpath and Elizabeth Blackadder.

Highlights from beyond Scotland include An Old Street by LS Lowry – one of only seven works by Lowry to be held in Scotland’s public collections.

Visitors have welcomed the exhibition’s inclusivity: “A terrific selection and good to see so many women artists represented … there’s something for everyone to make you think and feel a range of emotions. Brilliant!”

Another commented on the quality of art on display: “I really enjoyed my visit today. I didn't know there were Scottish artists this talented and inspiring. A real eye-opener!”

Galleries staff have chosen more than 20 of the exhibits and written labels to accompany their selections. QR codes let audiences learn more about many of the artists and their works.

Visitors have enjoyed this approach: “It was great to see this selection of OnFife's art displayed so well. The curator's labels and the personal reflections displayed beside the staff picks are inspired.”

Staff picks include two of several Fife scenes on show – View from Aberdour Golf Course by Tom Gourdie and View Through the Cylinder by James Marshall Dickson.

Other Fife painters on display include contemporary artists Kate Downie, Dorothy Black, Marian Leven, Tim Cockburn and Frances Walker – who are all still creating new work.

Brushstrokes also includes the most recent addition to the OnFife collection – Features, Fingers, Foot by Lys Hansen – which is on display for the first time.

The exhibition has a separate art-themed space for family-friendly activities, which include reading, colouring, crafts and games.

Brushstrokes Curator Lesley Lettice says: “We've been overwhelmed by the response to the exhibition so far and it's great to know that so many of our visitors want to share their thoughts with us.” To find out more about Brushstrokes, go to

Brushstrokes is at Dunfermline Carnegie Library & Galleries until 2 June. Admission is free.

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