What The Dickins: A Tale Of Edinburgh City

Dickins spends five minutes with Dovecot Studios Chief Operating Officer Sandra Crow on Edinburgh Art Festival

Dovecot Studios

Dovecot Gallery is a landmark centre for contemporary art, craft and design built around a leading international tapestry studio. The Gallery occupies an extraordinary building in the heart of Edinburgh. Dickins spent five minutes with Chief Operating Officer Sandra Crow to find out all about their summer exhibitions.

Dovecot Studios Chief Operating Officer  Sandra Crow spends five minutes with Dickins!

Dovecot Studio

Kwang Young Chun’s Aggregation is being exhibited at Dovecot Gallery as part of the Edinburgh Art Festival

Tell us about your summer exhibition?

Sandra: Dovecot Gallery is proud to partner with Edinburgh Art Festival, and this year exhibits, for the first time in Scotland, Aggregations, by Korean artist Kwang Young Chun. Also, as a celebration of the life and work of Scottish Borders based textile designer Bernat Klein, A Life in Colour shows tapestries made with Dovecot in the 1970s alongside the artist’s paintings. Dazzle Jewellery exhibition also returns as part of Edinburgh Festival Fringe. Throughout August, both the Gallery and Tapestry Studio are open daily between 10 and 6, so that you can visit the exhibitions and watch the weavers at work from the Weaving Floor Viewing Balcony.

Dovecot Studios

Kwang Young Chun, Aggregations is being exhibited at Dovecot Studios (credit Stuart Armitt)

What does Edinburgh Festival mean to you?

Sandra: Edinburgh Festival to me, means spending even more time than usual in the remarkable organisation that is Dovecot – the place I have passionately worked for the last four and half years. Dovecot is a landmark centre for contemporary art, craft and design built around a leading international tapestry studio which I am proud to have an association with. My weaving colleagues amaze and inspire me daily with their skill and passion – their artistry and generous approach to collaboration is very motivational for me. We operate within a mixed economy cultural organisation; privately and publicly funded, making and selling tapestries and rugs, selling event space in our beautiful venue, running an exhibition programme, a small shop and a great café (essential). The diversity of the people that we can reach at Dovecot is part of the fascination of my job and also what keeps me on my toes! Festival brings in even more visitors and we are open 7 days a week, so you never know who might walk through the doors during this busy time. Dovecot does attract interest from many quarters and we have been privileged to work with some of the world’s greatest artists, designers, musicians and writers.

Dovecot Studios

This summer you can explore Bernat Klein’s A Life in Colour, paintings and Dovecot tapestries

Sandra: Edinburgh Festival gives us an opportunity to showcase our work and building to a wider audience which we are all very proud to do. It also gives us an opportunity to capitalise on some of our commercial endeavours as all sales of tapestry and rugs or hire of the venue or gifts from the shop, go back into the Studio to support the work we do. Our aim at Dovecot is to continue to make a success of this vibrant and forward-looking organisation, to create an economically sustainable Tapestry Studio that will endure and offer opportunities to apprentice weavers and to people in our wider supporting team and to carry on creating amazing works of art in this iconic building for years to come. For all these reasons I hope we are now firmly on everyone’s Edinburgh Festival must see list.

Do you have any regular Edinburgh haunts or hangouts?  

Sandra: What is wonderful about living in Edinburgh at Festival time is having a cultural feast delivered to the doorstep. Some years you can take in a show that changes your life or you catch a star of the future before they are famous or other years I’m content to sit in the Pleasance courtyard and rub shoulders with performers and festival goers, or eat and drink in Devil’s Advocate or Blackfriars Bo’s or…of course the wonderful Dovecot café by Stag Espresso, just soaking up all the vibrancy and energy that Festival brings.


Where to find Dovecot Studios and see these great exhibitions:

Dovecot Tapestry Studio

10 Infirmary Street


Opening hours in August: Monday to Sunday 10am to 6pm

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