I am a Scottish artist and designer based in Glasgow. My key area of interest is in collaborative projects that explore place, narrative and participation. My work encompasses painting and drawing, installation, print and delivery in the community. Learn more about my approach and interests in this blog section of my website. For a more frequently updated insight into my practice please follow me on twitter @josievallely
"Mosaic Illustrates Wee County's Heritage"
A lovely write up from the Alloa Advertiser about the mosaic I made together with Breatheasy Clacks. A link to the original article is here
Glasgow Artist Josie Vallely has given art and drawing classes to the group over the last two years. And she mentioned that funding could be available from The Voluntary Action Fund for an art project which would benefit the group and the community.
Breathe Easy applied for the grant and were overjoyed to receive the funding. And after much deliberation a mosaic was chosen. Josie visited regularly and asked what they would like to see portrayed. She worked on the suggestions and started the project which was put together during months of hard work. On the day before the unveiling, the mosaic, which was made in three parts, was brought through to The Speirs Centre for the members to complete.
The members all placed a red tile into the red balloon on the mosaic. The tiles were placed in remembrance of members, friends and volunteers sadly no longer with us. The red balloon is the logo of The Breathe Easy Groups and The British Lung Foundation. The mosaic which has the heading ‘Look Aboot Ye’ shows the Ochil Hills, Castle Campbell, Alloa Town Hall, Alloa Tower, Gean House and the Speirs Centre. The windings of the River Forth and The Clackmannanshire Bridge are also featured, as is Andy Scott’s beautiful sculpture ‘River Spirit’, which is situated on the Collylands roundabout.
Other things depicted on the mosaic include a dragon’s head which is prominent in the Spiers Centre. A wading bird from The Black Devon Wetlands, which is home to all kinds of birds, has pride of place along with a fish which depicts the fish found in Gartmorn Dam. Bottles on the mosaic symbolise Alloa Glass Works, an important industry for the area, while Wasps are shown on the right of the artwork - Wasps being the logo of Alloa Athletic FC. A head of grain portrays the brewing and distilling industries. A ship and anchor tell the story of how Alloa docks used to be a busy port and the harbour which was a major exporter of goods to the continent in the 18th century. A needle and yarn depict the rich textile industry with many wool and weaving mills in the county. And the golf courses of the county are depicted with a flag on a green and lastly a dog which depicts the Scottish SPCA at Fishcross.
The bottom panel on the mosaic has the words ‘From Breathe Easy Clackmannanshire to all of the Wee County’.
Atopic Art in situ!
We have been working away on the development of the Woodcraft Folk's new heritage wesbite. Working with the Media Co-op on this project has been fantastic, but it was working with the Elfins (aged 6-9) and Pioneers (aged 9-13) that was the real treat for me!
Taking inspiration from the Woodcraft folk archives, I had begun exploring colors, shapes and iconography that we could bring to the new website...
I planned the workshops around Woodcraft Folk badges, which are lovely objects in them selves and lend themselves to being abstracted and explored.
After a few hours of creative chaos, the young people involved in the project came up with some beautiful deisgns which will be used in the final site design!
I have been looking back over the last year and I was reminded of a fantastic project which I haven't had a chance to share with you all! Last year The Mental Health Foundation began a project looking at the mental health of young people with long term conditions. As part of this project we are ran a series of events which brought young people together to creatively explore the well-being impacts of living with long term conditions and to brainstorm potential solutions to challenges they face.
I was invited along to the event to help creatively co-design with the young people who were involved with the project. I also designed some activity templates and workshop tools to go along with the project- photographed here by Chris O'Sullivan.
The templates supported young people to create fictional characters who are like them- young people with long term conditions. They created these people in detail so we could use the characters to imagine what challenges or problems might be faced by people living with long term conditions and develop potential solutions.
We then went on to make 'cereal box' pitches about our potential solutions- here you can see one in progress!
The Atopic Art project that I have been working on for the last year will be showcased in Edinburgh for the first time as part of Bio and Beyond visual art exhibition at Summerhall for the Edinburgh International Science Festival 2016! Alongside the exhibition program I will also be running creative drop-in workshops; Bedtime Balencing Act
This exhibition was curated by ASCUS, who are a non-profit organization dedicated to bringing the arts and sciences together. Based in Summerhall, we run events, curate exhibitions, commissions work, runs artist residencies and much more. Through our work we also strive to help academics engage the public through the arts. Our latest project is to open the ASCUS Lab at Summerhall: a publicly accessible laboratory for experimentation in art and science. To find out more, please visit the ASCUS website.
Take a look at our Atopic Art Adventures in this fantastic video featuring yours truly!
I work on lots of different kinds of projects and sometimes it can be hard to keep track of what I up to!