Exhibition to celebrate 50 years of art in Glenrothes

David Harding was appointed town artist in 1968.
David Harding was appointed town artist in 1968.

A celebration of Glenrothes’ unique town art and the career of David Harding, the first town artist, will open at the Kingdom Centre this weekend.

As well as 2018 being the 70th birthday of Glenrothes, it also marks 50 years since David Harding became the first town artist.

Andrew Demetrius is curating the show.

Andrew Demetrius is curating the show.

To mark the occasion, a film, booklet and trail have been created, as part of an event titled ‘The Enduring Town Art of Glenrothes’.

The pop-up exhibition will also feature archive and new photographs of the town’s artworks.

The 20-minute film is an extended interview with the artist, as he recollects about some of his most iconic works.

Harding was the town’s artist between 1968-78, creating works throughout the town, from the centre to the residential estates.

These were created for the people who lived there, some being made in collaboration with local school children and others – such as Dog Cemetery, Piano Keys, Bottle Openers – named by local residents.

He used the same building materials used to create local housing such as bricks and concrete.

His most notable works include the Henge, a stone circle created from cast concrete slabs, the Heritage, a row of concrete embossed columns, and the Industry murals on the West Freeway pedestrian underpass.

Residents and visitors will be able to find these works thanks to a new trail which has been created as part of the exhibition. A booklet has also been made, exploring the town’s art.

Carolyn Scott, who worked on the film, said: “He had friends who came to him and said they had come to Glenrothes but couldn’t find the art. He told them it wasn’t for them – it was for the people who live there.”

Andrew Demetrius, the curator, added: “He helped to kick off the community art scene in the UK. He lived and worked in the community. It was a very special time.”

‘The Enduring Town Art of Glenrothes’ will be held at 27 Unicorn Way, the former Card Factory store.

It will open on Saturday for the weekend, re-opening for October 27-28, between 10am-5pm.