A NEW exhibition inspired by Scottish fishing communities and seascapes is to be staged at the Scottish Storytelling Centre.

Materials salvaged from harbours, beaches and shipyards have been used in large-scale works that evoke the linkages between the communities of the North East of Scotland and their fishing heritage.

Created by artist Stephanïe Vandëm, Fishing will present 13 semi-sculptural works that explore the pressing environmental and identity concerns of today.

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The exhibition will be complemented by information panels on traditional craftwork related to fishing communities, in partnership with the Scottish Fisheries Museum at Anstruther.

The show will be staged during Edinburgh Tradfest from May 3 to June 15 as part of the Traditional Arts and Culture Scotland (Tracs) programme.

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Tracs director Steve Byrne said: “In celebrating the contribution of fisher folk, the exhibition gives voice to those involved in a precarious industry that has so much heritage, tradition and craft to explore, which often mean a great deal to fisher folk and their families.

“The works also challenge us to think about our impact on the environment through the inclusion of shore finds, opening up conversations around sustainability.

“At Tracs, we look forward to helping safeguard that living heritage and lore, the traditions and customs of fisher communities through our developing work with Intangible Cultural Heritage in Scotland.”

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Byrne added: “As someone who grew up on Scotland’s east coast, I was immediately struck by the familiarity and strong imagery of Stephanie’s work.

“It resonated with me and the sense of place I feel about that part of the world. I recognised the shapes and colours of the kind of work taking place in harbours up and down the coast that have been a key part of local communities for decades.

Brazilian by birth and educated in Paris, London, New York, and Florence, Vandëm worked extensively abroad before settling in the North East of Scotland. Her pieces can be found in many national and international private collections such as the luxury Fife Arms Hotel, owned by international art dealer Iwan Wirth.

From mountain to sea

Vandëm said Aberdeenshire’s motto, “from mountain to sea” had inspired her while creating the collection.

“My work is firmly rooted in classical principles, merging time-tested oil painting techniques and semi-abstraction, to pressing contemporary themes and universal human struggles, resulting in monumental semi-sculptural paintings,” she said.

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“The pieces resemble an archaeological find sedimented in cement, sand, metal and found objects. They create puzzles, connecting the personal, political, and spiritual elements of my own life and practice.”

Fishing is part of Tracs’ programme of events showcasing Scotland’s traditional arts and cultural heritage. The organisation has been recently appointed as an adviser to Unesco on Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) in Scotland and this exhibition will showcase ICH in practice through highlighting the unique ways of life, practices and rich folklore of fishing communities on the east coast