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Review from the Mental Health Festival Website by Alexandre Queneau:

Two exhibitions have opened at The Gallery on the Corner!

Postcards from… is a new exhibition at The Gallery on the Corner in Edinburgh. A while ago, 200 artists were sent wooden postcards to create artwork for the project. 123 were returned to the gallery. Since last Friday and until Monday 24th October, they are displayed at the heart of Edinburgh, covering three of the gallery’s walls.

With 123 postcards from 123 artists, you can expect an astonishing variety of subjects (from landscapes and portraits to more abstract artworks). And a number of different techniques have been used: you will find paintings (oil, pastel, etc.), drawings, 2D and even 3D collages. All the same size yet all so different… in my opinion, this heterogeneous collection of artwork really is quite amazing. “Some of the postcards have been done by very established artists,’ explains Susie, the gallery manager. ‘Some have been displayed at the gallery before, while others were made by non-professional artists.”

At The Gallery on the Corner, everyone is very enthusiastic about the exhibition. “I bought four already!” says Jennifer, who works here, as she proudly points at her recent acquisitions. In fact, about 40 had been sold within a few days of opening (they will all remain at display until the end of the exhibition). “We had an opening night on Friday, which went very well” adds Susie. At a price of £15 each, it is not surprising that so many have gone already, considering the quality of the art.

Also at the gallery, Memory, Sleeps and Dreams is a more traditional exhibition featuring paintings by seven artists, all of whom have experience of mental health conditions. It features paintings by self-taught British expressionist Michelle Gates, surrealistic views of the streets Edinburgh by Fee Dickinson, a series of small paintings by Anna Reid, and a beautiful series of four paintings by Edinburgh artist Lee Ritchie based on his memories of East Lothian landscapes. The exhibition also features work by Robert Euman, Alison Prosser and Lynda Frame.

The Gallery on the Corner opened in March 2010 and is run by a charity. “It supports inclusive artwork and crafts produced by artists who have a disability or mental health problem” explained Kenneth, one of the gallery assistants. It is the first social venture developed by Autism Ventures Scotland. Both exhibitions are free and running throughout the festival until October 24th.

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