Bad news from Creative Scotland

 We had been waiting to hear from Creative  Scotland about the outcome of our application for funding for Ceangal 2013, which Lynn had spend weeks working on. We are very disappointed to have to say we were unsuccessful in obtaining funding from them once again – It would be interesting to see who and what projects received monies, and which areas of Scotland will be benefiting.

We are planning to hold Ceangal from 14th-31st August 2013, and strongly feel that it has the potential to be even more inclusive and successful after last year, but now we obviously have to rethink our options regarding finance as we cannot afford to contribute financially as before. 

Ceangal was very much a community project and the goodwill of many was what made it special, and also ensured the participation of many.  We hope that the support will still be there, but had hoped for more support from a public body and to be able to recompense those who are so generous with their time, ideas and influence.  Ceangal is not about personal gain, it is in a sense the property of Gairloch, and we wish to raise the profile of the area further to a group of people who will come, enjoy, create, respect and appreciate the West Coast as the special area it is, so if anyone has any ideas regarding this and how we can move forwards and raise the necessary funds it would be much appreciated.

The feedback we received from the community was on the whole very positive and we feel it would be a real loss for the project to not move ahead further, especially building on the comments we received both from the artists and members of the public.

We would value any comments or ideas about to how to move forwards.

Creative Scotland commented that the competition was very high, they’d received 85 submissions requesting an excess of £2.5million. They could only support 14 projects out of that. They recognised the strengths in our application, but it wasn’t as strong as other applications, the geographical spread and ‘range’ of applications was also cited as a consideration.

14th sept.

Day 4. Wednesday 12th. Artists at work

Today was some studio time, also artists scattered to work in various locations gathering materials. A delicious meal cooked by Puja and Megha, served at the Fire station, then onto the opening of the Forward Thinking show at the Gale Centre, which has been Curated by Tim Ellis a former artist in residence at Glenfiddich. another fantastic stimulating day, also wonderful to see members of the community coming along to meet the artists and get involved.

Day 3, 10th sept. Excursions

Another whirlwind wonderful day together!  We had a highly informative archaeological walk guided by Jeremy Fenton. Delicious Cream Teas at the whistlestop Cafe, Kinlochewe. A much appreciated visit to the Gairloch museum with local volunteer experts explaining about the local history & heritage, Great walks around Loch Maree at the Beinn Eighe nature reserve, a taste sensation of a meal at local Artist Sam Banisters house and …tomorrow the art work begins !

day 2- excursions with the artists

Today we went on excursions for the artists to recce the local area and get ideas of where to work. Gairloch harbour, flowerdale arboretum walk, had a picnic lunch on Gairloch beach, then went to Badachro, and Inverewe mountain trail- then back to Lynn’s house for a delicious meal together.

day 1 – Saturday 8th sept, the artists arrive

Day 1, most of the artists have arrived, jetlagged, exhausted, inspired. everyone was collected from the airport in a borrowed mini-bus, gathered at Lynn’s house for some food and headed down to the community Hall where a ceilidh had been arranged by lots of local volunteers. It was a wonderful night, highland culture and hospitality at its best, it has set the perfect start to the residency. The artists joined in with the scottish country dancing and also got interviewed by a young volunteer for the local radio. Tomorrow will be excursions around the local area to get inspiration and start thinking about where and what sort of art work the artists will do while they are here.

final countdown


Twelve artist in all are attending the residency, plus one for a weekend.  One of these will be here  for the first week only.  While one of the artists is getting here under their own steam, five will be arriving in Inverness on the 8th September, and will be picked up all together in the minibus.  There will be extra seats if anyone extra would like to join us.  The minibus will be retained for the following two days for showing the artists around the area so that they can select a place to work.


Several different forms of promotion and communication have been set up:

There will be an ‘Art Spot’ every day for the fortnight on Two Lochs Radio.  This will include daily updates and interviews with the artists which will be collated to create a series of shows which will be broadcast at a later date.

Posters and banners have been produced and will be put out and about in the days leading up to the residency.  Everyone at the meeting took copies to display in different areas and banners will be hung at Garve, Braemore, Ullapool, Achnasheen, Lochcarron and the airport as well as at local venues.

The GALE Centre will be used as a contact point for people to gather daily information .

The High School morning bulletin will be used to get information to the pupils.

More information will be conveyed in the next copy of the Gairloch and District Times, including details about the ‘Open Studio’ in the Drill Hall and the times of the artists’ presentations which will be staged at the fire station.


Everything will kick off with a family Ceilidh in Gairloch Community hall on 8th September, which is also to raise money for the Highland Hospice.  More prizes for the raffle would be gratefully recieved.

On the 9th September the artists are going to be taken in the minibus to visit Poolewe, Inverewe,  and Flowerdale. .  It should also be an interesting day down at the pier as the Boat Club Regatta will be on.

On the 10th, the artists will visit The Museum, where it is hoped that they will meet representatives of the archaeological group and also chat and meet some local people. There may also be the chance to take the artists to see the roundhouses at Achtercairn.   They will go on to Badachro, where some of the old boats may be of interest, and then they will drive down to Beinn Eighe.

From the 11th onwards, the artists will be starting on their works.  They will have breakfast at their host houses and then pick up their packed lunches at Lynn’s.   Evening meals will be served about 6.00pm, either at the fire station or at individual’s houses.

On the 12th, there will be an public opening at the GALE Centre of the Glenfiddich ‘Forward Thinking’ exhibition.  This will be between 7.00 and 9.00 pm.

On Friday 14th, a BBQ on the beach at Big Sands is planned, weather permitting.(Saturday will be the back-up date.)  Food will be provided by Ceangal for the artists but the event will be open to the public and people will be encouraged to bring more food.  It is also hoped that some folk will bring instruments and it will become a musical evening.  Details will be announced on the radio.

From the 20th, artists will be pulling their work together for the final exhibition.

The opening of the exhibition will take place on the 22nd, between 11.00 and 5.00pm.


More people with an interest in photography would be welcome to help needed to document the event.  Although artists will record the progress of their own work, it would be nice to have other recording an ‘all-over’ view.  Anyone wishing to assist with this please contact us.

Now we eagerly await everyone arriving and are hoping for good weather!

Join in with Ceangal.

Ceangal is a venture into uncharted waters in many ways here and will be a truly international experience!

We are kicking off with a family ceilidh on 8th September which will also raise funds for the Highland Hospice, so if you can sing, dance, or play an instrument, come along, and of course you can just sit and enjoy the fun!

Being a creative event and with the artists not finalising what they might do till they are here, we will be broadcasting daily updates from Two Lochs Radio, and also posting information in the GALE tourist centre, so listen in or contact the tourist centre to find out more as the residency progresses.

Ceangal is about freedom to create, (see previous blog) and also to encourage those who might not have had the opportunity (as well as those who enjoy doing so), to take part, interact, create, share experiences, stories, ideas…

Art is for ALL.  We as humans are creative, but in these unsettled days, this often gets forgotten, so come along and join in… it is up to you, try something new, make new friends and connections and enjoy some stunning scenery whilst doing so!

Many individuals and businesses have pledged their support in one way or another, and if you would like to contribute or join in – get in touch –  email:, phone:01445712389 and take a look at the website: and

Ceangal news

Before I depart for India, I thought it might be prudent to inform and update people about what is happening with Ceangal and how plans are moving along.

Although this project is to invite international artists to come and work here for a couple of weeks in September 2012, we invite the community to get involved.  You don’t have to know a lot about art, this is about involvement, pulling together, and welcoming new experiences – you never know where it might take you!

The residency program that we have taken the idea from is in an rural area in Partapur, India, where there was little or no involvement with art, but from the initial batch of residencies, support has grown and the Sandarbh residencies are now an integral part of the area with locals welcoming and getting involved with a large number of artists from all round the globe.  This, as is the plan for Ceangal, is run on a minimal budget, with basic accommodation and food, and the artists working with materials mainly to hand, and community members volunteering time to get involved and make sure the artists have a comfortable friendly stay.

The focus at the moment is on fundraising for the monies we do need, mainly food, accommodation and travel.  We also need to source some money for documenting the project and to hold welcome and end of residency parties or ceilidhs.

There is an enthusiastic team of volunteers involved, not just artists, but teachers, cooks, curators,  as well as some who have an interest in tourism and retail. We welcome all who would like to do their bit, be it admin, driving, cooking, writing, photography, or just welcoming new visitors to our area, as we are sure this will open the doors and entice a group of people who might not normally consider visit here, and create many opportunities for cultural exchanges and networking.

There is a wealth of materials here that can be used, as well as scrap and things that would normally go to landfill or recycling, so start hoarding now!

On the cards for spring 2012 are a series of art classes with a variety of mediums and tutors, and we are also making plans for  a “Film day” later in the year, with the intention of showing art related films and documentaries.  We hope these will both raise awareness of Ceangal as well as being enjoyable occasions and raising some funds.

The best way to keep up to date with progress is to read the blog –, this website in progress –, a Facebook page – Ceangal=connection and you can follow us on Twitter – @ceangalconnect.