SSA Annual 2012


The Royal Scottish Academy Building,
The Mound, Edinburgh

‘What the societies do is provide a place where artists can show alongside one another, senior cheek-by-jowl with junior, always a healthy stimulus, and where artists who may have no other outlet can show their work…it is a chance for galleries to find artists they might not otherwise know about.’ Extract from Duncan Macmillan’s **** review of SSA 2012 – ‘Big Societies: Why Scottish painters deserve better’. Published in the Scotsman 9th February 2012. Click here to read the full article.

Exhibition Open
Saturday, 4 February – Thursday 1 March
RSA Lower Galleries, The Mound, Edinburgh
Monday – Saturday 10am – 5pm, Sunday 12pm – 5pm

President: Louise Ritchie
Vice-President: Gayle Nelson

The Council
Rick Ballard | Calum Buchanan (co-opted) | June Carey | Liz Douglas | David Faithfull | Lorna Fraser | Fiona Hutchinson | Tiina Leppänen | Norman McBeath | Scott Moncur (co-opted) | Nan Mulder (co-opted) | Leena Nammari | Gayle Nelson | Charmian Pollok

Julia Douglas

2012 Selection Committee
Alan Kilpatrick, Charmian Pollok, Jenny Smith, Fiona Hutchison, Leena Namaari, Christopher Wood RSW & Louise Ritchie

2012 Hanging and Arranging Committee
Sheila Carnduff, David Forster, Christine Heughan, Alan Kilpatrick, Leena Nammari, Sharon Quiqley, Duncan Robertson & Louise Ritchie

Graduate Artists Co-ordinator
Gayle Nelson


Welcome to SSA 2012, the 115th Annual Open Exhibition of the Society of Scottish Artists.

At the heart of what makes SSA special is our determination to showcase the best of what is being created in Scotland today coupled with our examination and appreciation of the nuance of each work whilst defending our long held belief in selection democracy and rigour. Many drafts were written as I pondered how to begin middle and end an introduction to what is a massive logistical and financial challenge that appears to come together by osmosis but in reality is won by hard graft and determination. That, plus copious amounts of tea, biscuits and discussion about how to hang this or install that…..

A society with the wealth of heritage that SSA boasts has a high standard to maintain and we are continually delighted at the quality and diversity of submissions. Much shaking and scratching of heads usually ensues when faced with the significantly reduced space on offer in the Lower Galleries, therefore we set a size restriction which has created a wonderfully intimate show. It has also allowed us to continue to exhibit the experimental and playful work which has defined the SSA. Huge thanks go to all the volunteers and committee members who give willingly of their time every year. This is a monumental task and we would encourage any member to participate in the process to appreciate just what it takes to get the show together with such limited time and resources.

2011/12 saw SSA exhibit in Slovakia as part of the Bridges/Mosty 1X Exchange, Poland with Big Print Small Print, part of our Grafika Polska Exchange and the Engramme Exchange Prize in Quebec was awarded to David Faithful. These initiatives build on our existing international relationships and provide wonderful exhibiting opportunities for the organisation. Closer to home we staged Professional Members Exhibitions in Glasgow at the Eastwood Park Gallery and at the Glasgow Arts Club.

Last year Leena Nammari and I devised and ran an Artist Book Workshop held in the gallery for City of Glasgow College HND: Contemporary Art Practice. We are delighted to deliver this workshop once again which challenges the students to create Artists` Books in response to the Annual Exhibition.

During this period of intense activity we have said a fond farewell to Noreen Sharkey Paisley and welcomed Julia Douglas as our new SSA Administrator. Also saying goodbye after long years of service in 2011 was Christopher Wood RSW and we wish him a heartfelt appreciation for his tireless commitment to the SSA.

Finally, my thanks go to those Prize Givers and Sponsors who generously support the SSA by recognising the wealth of talent that we foster in such a direct way. The Annual Exhibition costs the three societies tens of thousands of pounds to stage and with the current climate putting increasing pressure on all who serve the arts, we sincerely thank all those who continue to support and promote our endeavours.

We hope you enjoy SSA 2012
Louise Ritchie – President


Click on an image below to scroll through the slides of the exhibition.

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Photographs courtesy ©Norman McBeath 2012


The SSA is once again delighted to include the work of invited graduate artists who were selected from Scotland’s Degree Shows by SSA Members of Council. Their work demonstrates a diverse range of subject matter and media and is shown for the first time within the wider context of a large exhibition, offering both artist and audience a new perspective.

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Artist Book Workshop with students from City of Glasgow College HND: Contemporary Art Practice.

This workshop was devised and led by Louise Ritchie PSSA and Leena Nammari, and was intended as an informal visual response to SSA 2012. The workshop was held in the heart of the RSA Galleries and SSA Exhibition itself. Students explored ways to create an artists` book, which was an interpretation of either one or several works exhibited. Once created, the books were installed as pieces within the exhibition itself and remained there, blending with the other exhibits, until the show closed.

How to Present your work for Exhibition

SSA Professional Member and ex – Council member Jenny Smith gave an interactive talk about how to frame and/or present work for exhibition, using work in the exhibition as examples. This was a free event and open to all.


The Tony and Maureen Toft Prize – £1000
Gillian Mairi Alexander – Woman With Strawberry Laces For Hair

The Deloitte Prize – £500
Alan Bond – Portal

The Cairn Energy Prize – £500
Louise Blamire – Untitled 2

Edinburgh Laser Cutting Studio Prize – A Laser Cutting Course
Elaine Allison – Typeface (Unique Equation)

The Southfield Prize – £800 Worth of Printed Material
Alastair Mack – Battery Park

The Henderson Artshop Prize – Purchase Prize
Simon Burns-Cox – Three Whales

Mansfield Park Gallery & Art Hire Prize – £250 Framing + Solo Exhibition
Vanessa Cabban – Cloud Music

The Glasgow Art Club Award – 2 Years Free Membership + Exhibiting Opportunity
Donna Briggs – Adhaerere. Irene E G Blair – Adjunct

The Scottish Arts Club Prize – 2 Years Free Membership + Solo Exhibition
Elaine Shemilt – Bird Island (Mapping South Georgia)

The Connell & Connell WS Prize – £300
Laura Homoky – Kingfisher at the Fountain. Puzzle

The Greyfriars Artshop Prize – £150 Voucher
Michael Craik – Root Two Tootle (No.3)

The Pauline Fay Lazarus Prize- For work derived from the human form – £150
Linda Kosciewicz-Fleming – Dream of Venus

The Purcell Paper Prize – £100 Specialist Artists` Paper
Alison Grant – Fragments Of Time

The Ramsay Cornish Auctioneers Prize – £300
Paul Charlton – Turk

The SSA Prize – £250
Denise Zygadlo – Receive 1

The Edinburgh Printmakers Award – Printmaking Course + 3 months session fees
Katharine Aarrestad – Those Who Live In Good Houses

SSA Website Awards – Free promotional page on the SSA website for 1 year
Tina Vanderwerf – Baliscate, 06.22 am
Annie Woodford – Microsphere I

Click on an image below to scroll through the slides of the prize winners work.

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Download a digital copy of the SSA 2012 catalogue as a PDF (4.4MB) by clicking on SSA 2012 or on the catalogue image left.