A hoot of an exhibition
Stirling Smith Art Gallery and Museum is hosting a hoot of an exhibition: The Art of the Owl.
From the collection of J. Malcolm Allan a flock of barn, tawny, snowy, great-horned, great-grey, elf, eagle, long-eared, short-eared and little owls have settled throughout the building.
Malcolm, a retired university rare books librarian from Bridge of Allan, began to acquire owls at the age of 15 when a pupil at Manchester Grammar School. The school badge was a woven owl with the motto 'Dare to be Wise' (sapere aude), igniting his interest in folk lore, stories and literature surrounding the intriguing birds.
Decades later his collection now comprises of 4150 owl-themed pieces - from fine works of art to mantelpiece ornaments and soft toys. He also has over 500 owl books and several thousand owl greetings cards. As befits a librarian, his collection is described and catalogued in detail, in beautiful calligraphy, in seven catalogues.
Malcolm said, "I like sharing my passion for owls and welcome this public show of a small part of my collection. Young visitors can go around the Smith following an owl trail."
The Art of the Owl will run until 21 September.
Malcolm will be giving a lunchtime talk on Thursday 23 August at 12pm. Tickets are £5 and duplicate pieces from his collection will be on sale at £2 each to aid the Smith Development Fund for conservation of the building.
Stirling Smith Art Gallery and Museum, Dumbarton Road. Open Tuesday-Saturday (10.30am-5pm) and Sunday (2-5pm). Admission and parking free.
This article appeared in Alloa & Hillfoots Advertiser 15 Aug 12
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