Robin Baillie

Art House 7
Address: 11 Bath Street
Open: 2/3 September

‘Always Wanted: Clothes, Wool, Rags, etc’ presents wall-based textile banners mounted with tailored garments from the edges of the past. These assemblages recall rags picked from the ‘old town’ of memory and loss.

Robin’s wall-hangings feature simple self-tailored garments, smocks and coats, presented as if mounted on banners for public demonstrations. This struggle is about who owns history and which history is remembered. These are the clothes of those who formed the fabric of the past but were never represented. These people are recalled by remnants from the ragpicker’s yard; in this case, an impenetrable bolt-hole yard, like the famous Nathan’s Marine Stores in the Cowgate, in Edinburgh’s Old Town. Robin adopts traditional museum presentation styles to transform the ephemeral materials of wool and scraps of textile. He attempts to ‘paint’ with fabrics and ‘draw’ with a ball of wool. Raised up on the wall, his roughly crafted items appear as relics-the detritus of historical culture. They proudly parade the vestiges of the anonymous, the forgotten and the disdained.

About Robin attended the University of Edinburgh from 1977-81 and graduated with a joint Honours degree in Politics and Modern History. Shortly after he moved to London and lived there between 1983 and 1993, practicing as an artist, making paintings and sculpture. He returned to the Slade School of Art, University College London to complete a postgraduate degree in Fine Art (Media) between 1990-92. Robin then took up a post as Lifelong Learning Officer at the National Museum of Scotland in 2000and moved onto his present post in Outreach at the National Galleries of Scotland in 2001. He has also taught art history as a part-time tutor at Edinburgh College of Art, since 1995.

His most recent exhibition was an artwork, ‘Dust-Coat’ in the Artists at Work exhibition and his most recent exhibition of paintings was Miss Brodie’s Boys at the Matthew Gallery, University of Edinburgh curated by the art historian and critic, Bill Hare.


Instagram: @baillie18711968



The Downed Dumb
Poetry Reading by Robin Baillie
Saturday, 2 September at 2pm – 2.30pm
A reading of recent poems on contemporary European history, published on CD as DITCHBURN, featuring specially composed music by Colin Gateley.