Ullapool and the surrounding area support a thriving Visual Arts and craft scene. The Artists deliberately choosing to live and work in this wonderful area cannot help but have their work influenced by the environment around them, this manifests itself in many subtle ways in their artistic practice; they have a deep and powerful respect for the land, its people and culture as well as passion, skill and integrity in their approach to their art.
An Talla Solais is the community-led art centre in Ullapool. It has two venues: one is a dedicated space for workshops and Artist studios, which holds classes and workshops for beginners and professional artists alike. The other, recently opened gallery space is in the centre of the village where a wealth of artwork is shown ranging from work by internationally renowned artists to local group shows and open exhibitions. Cabinet, the gallery shop, is an independent business run by local artists and hosted in An Talla Solais's gallery. Cabinet sells exquisite art, craft and design products from the highland area and further afield.
RhueArt gallery is 3 miles north of Ullapool. Originally the open studio of James Hawkins, who is considered to be one of the best contemporary landscape painters in Scotland. Now it is a large gallery where you can view his incredible paintings alongside brushes and pots of paint. Beside the studio a beautiful new gallery and sculpture garden has recently opened which shows an exciting schedule of exhibitions by established and emerging artists.
Bridge house Art is a creative environment for making and studying art. This small, independent school and studio was established in 1995 and continues to offer a rich and varied programme of courses in the visual and creative arts. Throughout the year we endeavour to offer a range of courses that both inspire and educate simultaneously. The ethos behind all of their courses is that we all can think and communicate visually and express, through a variety of media, a genuine response to the environment around us.
There are some excellent Arts and Crafts galleries in the area as well.
Ceard, the recently opened Craft gallery in Ullapool who show some of the best Scottish Contemporary Crafts specialising in the many excellent local makers.
The Harbour Gallery shows paintings by Stuart Herd along with a range of crafts and memorabilia.
The Leal Craft Gallery 10 miles south of Ullapool who stock a very wide range of some of the best local and Scottish arts and crafts in a warm and light, spacious environment.
Achiltibuie and Lochinver also have some great artists, galleries and photographers. Some of the Ullapool photographers such as Steven Gourlay and Angus Bruce have contributed to this site and we try to feature examples of the work of professional and other photographers around the area on our Facebook page and Twitter.
Pottery is famous in the region, the highland Stoneware has outlets in both Lochinver and Ullapool where visitors can buy their fabulous products and also watch the potters and artists making and decorating their plates and other products. Smaller but equally talented potters are based on Lochside and again can be visited whilst they work.
Many of the local markets at Ullapool and Elphin feature the art, pottery, crafts and clothing made by many of our resident artists and local talent.
Many of the pivotal discoveries of the Victorian era that contributed to the development of the concept of plate tectonics were made in this area, and there are still regular international geological conferences.