First look at line-up for Edinburgh Art Festival

Grayson Perry. Picture: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images
Grayson Perry. Picture: Tristan Fewings/Getty Images
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Celebrated artist Grayson Perry will hold his first major solo exhibition in Scotland as part of the line-up for the Edinburgh Art Festival.

The former Turner Prize winner’s exhibition Julie Cope’s Grand Tour will be at the city’s Dovecot Studios.

Artists from around the globe feature in the programme for the 16th edition of the festival, which was announced by organisers today.

The Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art will present a major survey of work by Paisley-born Anya Gallaccio.

As well as a wide range of contemporary art there will be major retrospectives, such as the Bridget Riley exhibition at the Royal Scottish Academy, spanning more than 70 years of the painter’s work.

Sorcha Carey, festival director, said: “Bringing together national institutions alongside leading contemporary art spaces, commercial art galleries and artist-run initiatives, our Festival is born out of the rich reservoir of knowledge, expertise and passion for the visual arts that characterises our city all year round.

“Our 16th edition continues to demonstrate the strength and vitality of visual arts in Edinburgh, with major survey shows, a host of new commissions by Scottish and international artists, and the best emerging talent.

“The breadth and range of the programme opens up space for surprising connections across time, art form and the city of Edinburgh itself.”

The Fine Art Society will show a group exhibition of portraiture by artists ranging from John Byrne and Jennifer McRae to Eduardo Paolozzi.

Sculptor and former fashion designer Nicole Farhi’s work Writing Heads, a series of 25 busts of 20th century novelists and playwrights, will be on display.

Work by some of the most influential photographers of the 20th century also features, including Cindy Sherman, Francesca Woodman, Diane Arbus and Robert Mapplethorpe.

Amanda Catto, head of visual arts at Creative Scotland, said: “The Edinburgh Art Festival is a highlight of the visual arts calendar in Scotland and an exceptional opportunity for people to experience a rich mix of exhibitions and events across the city.”

The festival runs from July 25 to August 25. In a Scottish first, Samson Young will bring his first major solo show in the UK “Real Music” to the Talbot Rice Gallery in a mash-up with Edinburgh University’s Reid School of Music. Mixing music, film and images the Hong Kong artist and composer creates an accessible multi-media installation to confront cultural, political and aesthetic boundaries.

Director Talbot Rice Gallery Tessa Giblin said the collaboration is a “brilliant way to connect” with the many local and international visitors who come to Edinburgh with high expectations for art and culture.

Head of visual arts at Creative Scotland Amanda Catto added: “The Festival presents a high-quality programme that embraces art in the broadest of terms – from contemporary and experimental, to the old and modern masters from local and international artists.

“The breadth and depth of programme encourages people to visit spaces that are new to them and to re-visit galleries they already know and love.”