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Image by Susan Timmins

Opening at Bonhoga Gallery this Friday is an exhibition taking local marine engineering firm Malakoff Ltd. as its inspiration. The diverse range of work is by the four category winners of last year’s Shetland Open exhibition: Susan Timmins, Ana Arnett, Cheryl Jamieson and Fionn Arnett.

Working with both financial and professional support from Shetland Arts the four artists have each created a new body of work for the show. Exhibitions Officer Jane Matthews explains, “The artists hit upon the idea of using the Malakoff as their starting point, so we approached company director Dougie Stevenson, who was hugely supportive. Each artist has taken inspiration in a different way, either from the colours, materials or folk at work, which makes a fascinating narrative to the exhibition”.

Susan Timmins, whose installation includes over a hundred photographs, explains about her work, “it reflects my experience of the Malakoff over a five month period:  red buildings, red boiler suits; welding, grinding, cutting; blasting, painting; diving;  boats winched up the slip, boats released; nuts, bolts, pipes, rods; flashes, sparks; voices echoing, singing, whistling; sudden silences. I was always mindful that the camera is intrusive and that my questions were numerous. I am very grateful to everyone at the Malakoff for their patience and good humour.”

Glass artist Cheryl Jamieson explains, “I’ve always loved da Nuthoose at da Malakoff and this led to me designing panels that are nut-shaped, featuring sea inspired decoration. It’s been a great experience for me, especially working with the others, and I’m looking forward to seeing how it all comes together.”

The exhibition includes a historical context of the business and some bizarre artefacts collected from across the world bearing the same name, Malakoff!

The public opening of the exhibition is at Bonhoga on 17 April from 6-7.30pm and the show then runs until 31 May.  The exhibition also coincides with the commencement of Bonhoga’s new ‘High Season’ opening hours. From 27 April the gallery will be open from 10.30 -5.30 Monday – Saturday, & 11.30 – 5.30 Sundays, with additional late night opening until 7.30pm on a Thursday. Everyone is welcome to come and enjoy this marriage between art and industry, alongside the annual Bairns’ Open in the lower gallery, also themed, for this year, around industry.

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