Jupiter Artland: Green light for 'world class' gallery, distillery and visitor centre expansion at Edinburgh attraction
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An acclaimed outdoor art attraction near Edinburgh Airport has been given the green light for an expansion that will see a new gallery, distillery and visitor centre complex in its grounds.
The complex, which will help Jupiter Artland open year round for the first time, has been designed to match the scale of neighbouring agricultural buildings in the surrounding countryside.
Said to be vital to securing a “sustainable future” for the attraction, the expansion will also allow Jupiter Artland to make its own whisky and vodka on site, as well as host tasting events.
Jupiter Artland, founded by Robert and Nicky Wilson at their 100-acre Wilkieston estate in 2009, attracts upwards of 100,000 visitors a year.
It is now home to works of art by Phyllida Barlow, Christian Boltanski, Helen Chadwick, Nathan Coley, Ian Hamilton Finlay, Anya Gallaccio, Andy Goldsworthy, Antony Gormley, Anish Kapoor, Tania Kovats, Cornelia Parker, Joana Vasconcelos and Tracey Emin.
However, the couple say recent exhibitions, which are staged in converted steading buildings, are “not fit for purpose” and have shown there is a “strong need” for purpose-built gallery facilities.
Nicky Wilson said: “We’re very proud of what we’ve achieved at Jupiter Artland, but we’re also aware of the need to keep improving our visitor experience and ensure that we invest in the long-term future of the facility as a year-round visitor attraction and, just as importantly, our ongoing outreach work.
"We’re passionate about the collection, but also about our mission to deliver arts experience to every child in Scotland. We would like to thank the council for its support and look forward to starting work on site this year, with a view to opening the new facilities in 2025.
"Jupiter Artland is more than a visitor attraction. It is no less than a mission to improve the experience and importance of art for people of all ages in Scotland. These new facilities will dramatically increase our ability to fulfil that mission.”
The Jupiter Artland expansion has been designed by Helensburgh-based Organic Architects, which have previously worked on distillery projects at Lindores Abbey in Fife, Ardnamurchan, in the West Highlands, and Moffat, in the Borders.
Organic director Gareth Roberts said: "The new gallery will provide a haven for hosting world-class art and artists, with the buildings’ exteriors harmoniously echoing the park’s green surroundings.
"Its interior spaces will provide more room for captivating art, with new pieces from world famous artists, designed for areas within the building from early in the process. Projects like this are most important to us. We thrive on building a sustainable future for organisations like Jupiter Artland.”
A report for the council’s planning committee stated: “The proposal introduces a new use that does not directly relate to the principle use of the wider site as a sculpture park and art gallery.
"However, this new use forms part of an extension to an established, tourist facility to replace and enhance its existing facilities. It forms part of an overall high-quality, integrated design concept, which is of scale and position that will not detract from the rural character or landscape quality of the countryside.”