Tolbooth

In February 1994, with help from Stirling District Council, we secured occupancy for one month of the Tolbooth old prison in the old town. Seven artists created various installations throughout the building including the former robing room and cells.

With some local business sponsorship and the goodwill of local folks we organised an opening event which included live music and ceilidh, artists readings and performance.

The installation was featured on Radio Scotland and Central FM. In Artwork magazine, Giles Sutherland wrote of the show: Hanging Together consisted of thematically linked site-specific works which interacted meaningfully and forcefully with their chosen context... The exhibition represents the arts - again - working against adversity and begs the question: why are ventures of this kind, driven by enthusiasm and talent, not supported sufficiently?

Memory Banks

In summer 1994, eight artists constructed individual "Memory Banks" throughout Stirling and, depending on the site chosen, historical and social references were included in the design.

Residents and passers-by were invited to donate memories such as written reminiscences, messages in bottles, old photos, small objects etc. A 3 hour walk talk (documented on video) following a route which encompassed all the banks on the way. This was called the 'contrived derive'.

In the Autumn - harvest time - the items collected in the banks were then recycled into artworks and exhibited at the Smith Art Gallery and Museum as a testament to local ideas. Viewing of the video was also on offer.

Show on Ice

In April 1995 a special one-day public art event occurred outside the Albert Halls in Stirling, coinciding with the Whole Shebang Festival. The event involved the unveiling and subsequent melt-down of a large ice-block encrusted with layers of various individual art-works.

Memento Mori at Greenside

The theme of death is a rich and fascinating one and as artists we were inspired to create works on the subject. Perhaps partly because of the issues involved, this was the most awkward project to bring to fruition. It was originally going to be developed in the old graveyard at St Ninians but permission was withdrawn.

A subsequent version of the project at Greenside in Alloa went ahead in May-June 1996. Each of the five artists based works on personal, local and universal responses to the theme, which in many ways has become the taboo of the late 20th century.

X-Site virtual exhibition

A shop-work was proposed for the April 1996 Whole Shebang Festival. In the absence of any backing for the project, X-Site, a virtual realisation, was set up.

Open To Change

The group's ambitions to do a shop-based work were, to some extent, realised in autumn 1998 in the "Open To Change" installation at The Changing Room in Stirling's Old Arcade.

For this exhibition, the artists re-entered the gallery setting of The Changing Room in Stirling’s Old Arcade. In doing so, they chose to recall the space’s past as a variety theatre - presenting performing sea lions, no less! - and as a ladies and gents outfitters. Here the humorous and the erotically-charged stood side-by-side...

In the catalogue essay, Andrew Guest wrote of the group’s “belief that local context can contain global meaning. The effectiveness of their previous projects has relied on a certain charge which they set up through a subtle and often playful interaction with an unusual place”.

Solar at Alloa Tower

"Solar" was an exciting collaboration between the National Trust For Scotland, Clackmannanshire Council and Hanging Together. The group were given the opportunity to situate works in the Solar Room at the top of the recently-renovated Alloa Tower.

This brought together the rich history of the building with contemporary and forward-looking art works.

"needwantmusthave"

The long-standing ambition to do a shop-work was realised by this short-notice, low-budget opportunity for a group shop-front work in the Thistle Marches Shopping Centre in March-April 2000.

Six artists each worked on the shopfront to present a display of artworks which complemented each other. Using the medium of the ziplock bag (transparent enclosure bags), they created a variety of artworks.

The artworks were loosely themed on the shopping centre situation and designed to make the passing shopper stop and look.

Commoun Kist

This was a commissioned 2001 collective work around the ideas of the former and future uses of Stirling's Tolbooth.

The group settled on the concept of the commoun kist. The historical documents describe the use of a chest to hold the town's official papers. Booths outside the tolbooth provided the focal point of mercantile activity in the town.

These elements can be pulled forward to our times to underpin a work which expresses how the Tolbooth of the future can provide a new social space for the people of the town. This collective work took the form of a large Kist which is sturdy enough to transport between venues but which is hinged to open out into a three dimensional display of various compartments.

Plean Country Park

A collective work on 22nd July 2001 at Plean Country Park. More information here

Car Booty Sale

The public has vastly differing attitudes to the arts and to bargain hunting at car boot sales. The art object is precious, highly-priced and viewed for only seconds, at best. The object found at a car boot sale is scrutilised closely, its function and utility are discussed and a price is haggled over.

The Car Booty Sale project was a collective work in August 2002 at the Kildean car boot sale which aimed to bridge that gap. More information here

"Salt" at Culross Palace

The Salt project was an exhibition in the attic spaces of Culross Palace during summer 2003, on invitation from the National Trust for Scotland. The works were site-specific, drawing on the Royal Burgh’s historical commercial and trading links.

Brewers Group at Maclays

The Brewers Group show was organised in the disused Maclays Brewery in Alloa.

Oronsko and Warsaw

In autumn 2004, Hanging Together arranged an exchange by artists from central Poland and the Forth Valley towns, relating to migrations, cultural and economic links between the two countries. During the first phase, the Scottish artists worked in Oronsko at the Centre of Polish Sculpture and then exhibited at Galeria XX1 in Warsaw and at Gorzow Wielkopolski. The Polish artists then visited and exhibited in Alloa, Falkirk and East Kilbride.

An article about the project "Inner and Outer Prospects" was published in the Polish magazine Exit in 2005.

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WASPS Alloa 2005

The 2005 event in WASPS Alloa Studio was a memorable coming together of installations and performances by artists fom Scotland and Germany.

"Akcent" in Poznan

The Akcent project was a group exhibition at Galeria ON in Poznan in May 2006, preceded by a week's work at Oronsko.

Homecoming

This project was organised as part of the Homecoming 2009 events. It marked a return to Greenside Cemetery in Alloa, the venue for the 1996 Memento Mori installations. This time, the group's installations were in the Mar Mausoleum - dilapidated at the time of the previous work but subsequently restored.

Variety Show at Old Arcade Stirling

This 2010 project was situated in a shop unit in the Stirling Old Arcade, recalling its previous role as the Alhambra Theatre.

Criminal

Forgery, plagiarism, bad taste, theft, obscenity - artists have done them all.

In "Criminal", a 2012 exhibition at The Changing Room in Stirling's Tolbooth, Hanging Together question our sense of what might or might not be appropriate either because of the materials that are used; the subject matter addressed or the style employed.

"Islands"

As an Art Collective, Hanging Together would ordinarily work with a common theme, “Islands” was a response to preoccupations within the group, the challenge is to see how these fit – as islands do in nature. Will the islands remain isolated? What echoes will develop, what affective connections will emerge between these islands? Viewing from the Gallery North upper level affords the onlooker the opportunity to regard these connections, whilst transforms into individual islands for personal navigation.

Strathcarron

In 2014, Hanging Together were invited to get involved with Strathcarron Hospice and the launch of the new Hospice @ Home service. Each artist has produced a personal response to this invitation and the artworks have been installed in the grounds of the hospice (Fankerton, Denny, FK6 5HZ). As with all Hanging Together projects, the works are temporary.

Hanging Together's project "Strathcarron" is supported by and dedicated to, their late friend and artist collaborator, Jean Hendry.

For more information about Strathcarron Hospice (Charity No. SC006704): www.strathcarronhospice.org