Saturday 15 September 2012
Angus MacPhee’s work is a remarkable story of lost traditions and exciting discovery. His life is a tale of illness, lost traditions and magical hats made of grass “stunning like sunbursts”. Raised on South Uist and severely affected by WWII, Angus spent 50 years in a psychiatric hospital. He did not speak; instead he wove remarkable costumes out of grass. This work now features in the Collection de l’Art Brut, Switzerland.
In 1977 Tom McGrath of Glasgow’s Third Eye Centre was seeking new and exciting work. He visited Lausanne and the Collection de l’Art Brut and discovered the artwork Jean Dubuffet had been collecting in hospitals and psychiatric wards throughout Europe. This Outsider Art filled McGrath with inspiration and he came home with a mission to discover his Scottish version. He asked the art therapist Joyce Laing to search the hospitals around Inverness and Aberdeen and gave her one week’s petrol money to go and find him some. At the end of a very long week Joyce discovered Angus’ work on the farm ward of Craig Dunnain, hidden under bushes and hung on trees.
His work has continued to inspire and fascinate, and an astonishing pair of boots is now exhibited in the Collection de l’Art Brut in Lausanne. The most recent inspiration has been a show by Horse + Bamboo Theatre who finish their tour on the 15th of September at Ceòl 's Craic Gaelic club in the CCA (formerly the Third Eye Centre); the story has come home.
This enchanting performance will feature Gaelic singer Mairi Morrison and grass replicas by Joanne B Kaar.
“Physical, emotional and aural beauty… their collective artistry is awesome” (The Stage)