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Gallery artists and featured artists

Vaila Fine Art shows well-documented artists from 19th-21st Centuries, including Shetland contemporary landscapes and British marine artists. All media are represented, including wood engravings, etchings, watercolours, oils, acrylics, drawings, sculptures and constructions in wood and bronze.

Please contact us directly if you would like further information on our featuerd artists or their work.

Short biographical information and statements from artists currently exhibting can be found below. Find out more about our Gallery Artists here

Short biographies of currently exhibiting artists

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Paul Bloomer

My work has three threads running through it. The industrial Black country of my youth, the wild wilderness of Shetland where I now live and my Christian faith. My Black Country work explores themes such as oppression, exploitation and urban decay, whilst my Shetland work explores themes such as freedom, rebirth and growth. I work instinctually, the imagery and narrative evolving as I wrestle with the formal elements of composition. I make a lot of large woodcuts that force unclear ideas into shape. With paint, I explore the expressive possibilities of colour, often working outside in wild weather.

Rob Colclough

Born Burton-on-Trent, England. Exhibtions include: Sheffield Great Arts Show (2003/4), Bonhoga Gallery (2008), Church Gallery, Derbyshire, Matlock Art Gallery (2004-6).

Peter Davis

My work is a response mainly to landscape, but also to feelings, weather, times of day and specific places in the remote and minimalist scenery of Orkney and Shetland, the Northern isles of Scotland, where I have lived for more than twenty years. I find that the effects of watercolour, the most natural of the traditional painting media, can mirror the effects found in the environment. Angle of paper, quality and quantity of water and pigment, size of brush, drying time and temperature are all variables that affect the final outcome. Most recently two years spent working in West Africa has perhaps influenced my use of colour and usbject matter.

Debbie Hammond

Johnnie o da Burns looked out his window for the last 78 years, and loved his view of the hills and the burns. Now all he sees are the dozens of 145 metre wind generators on the hills and the mass destruction of everything he knew and loved of his life in Shetland.

Gail Harvey

Gail Harvey was born in 1954 in Glasgow. She attended the Glasgow School of Art where she received both a Diploma of Art and a Diploma of Postgraduate Studies. Since 1979, Harvey has beena member of the Royal Scottish Society of Painters in Watercolours, the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts and the Royal Scottish Academy. Gail Harvey's work has been exhibited in Europe and the US and is held in collections throughout the UK.

Davy Inkster

I was born in Shetland and have lived here all my life. I have spent over twenty years working as a dry stane dyker and tried my best to work in harmony with the landscape. Over the past few years I have found myself moving more towards sculpture. In 2006 I worked with thirty artists to create a dry stane settee overlooking the sea at the south end of Burra. "Retrograde" is a reflection of how I feel about Shetland becoming an industrial windfarm, "The Auld Rock" turning turtle under the strain of giant wind turbines.

Mike McDonnell

Michael Tacker McDonnell: Contributed cartoons to obscure and disreputable publications in the 1950s, but gave up following a pending lawsuit. During the 1960 spent 5 years in the Solomon Islands plagiarising traditional native wood carvers, but was obliged to leave, never to return, for dabbling in local politics.

Exiled to Shetland in the 1970s, remained quiescent until 2000 when he resumed cartooning in the form of bas relief images. A series of galleries in Galway, Connemara and Edinburgh provided venues for his one man shows, then permanently closed. Due to his advancing years he attempted to found a new movement, dubbed Grand Dada, eschewing any form of grant aid. So far there has only been one recruit - himself.

Roxane Permar

Since 1985 when I first visited Shetland, my visual art practice has been profoundly influenced by its culture and landscape. I am consequently deeply concerned about the environmental impact of an industrial scale wind farm in Shetland, in particular the effect of its noise.

Through my sound work, S.O.S. Sounds of Silence, I wish to raise awareness of the health issues surrounding the way noise disturbance can erode peace of mind and undermine physical well being.

I have made the piece from a recording of wind generators that are similar in scale to those proposed for Shetland. Each of ten CD covers carries a different text taken from the writings of Dr Nina Pierpont, a medical doctor who has coined the term ‘Wind Turbine Syndrome’ to describe the symptoms experienced by people who live near industrial wind turbines (

Richard Rowland

Richard Rowland 1944- Versatile printmaker, and sculptor, who is by profession a City solicitor. During his legal career Richard also studied from 1963-72 at Sir John Cass School of Art, mainly sculpture, concentrating on clay modelling and casting in various materials. In 1985 he began lithography, in 1986 etching, both under Peter Baer.

After retiring from full-time work, he had time to edition a selection of his etchings, which were shown publicly for the first time at Vaila Fine Art, Shetland in 2000. His printing output with some sculptures was then assembled for a 1975-2002 retrospective at the Milinery Works , London in 2002. Richard's prints have a wide range of subjects including landscapes from several continents. He works from studios in North London and Shetland.

Richard Swales

I am primarily a musician and songwriter, founder member of the seminal anarcho-punk band 'Poison Girls'. Artistically I have been mainly concerned with large site specific commissioned pieces throughout the country, one such commission leading me to Shetland in 1993. I am now a resident and registered crofter living on the Westside.

The first piece submitted, 'The Pungent Flatulence Of Greed' (Stuff it), is an attempt to connect to the energy, rage and willful shock value of the punk era. The second piece, 'BRIBEENERGYTHINK' is a more graphic work taking inspiration from the traditional Sampler form.

James Thomason

Four years ago, I moved back to my native Shetland after many years elsewhere -- initially London, then Suffolk and Europe. I spent a decade in Australia where the huge skies, expansive vista and time with indigenous artists have had great impact on my work. Learning about the Scottish ancestry of many South Australian pioneers has led to a series of paintings depicting the stoicism of Shetland women during hardship. More recently, I have been inspired by the equally enduring Arab women. My work is continually changing -- its themes and images are influenced by all these factors. I am deeply concerned about the destructive elements of the Windfarm plan for my native islands.

Susan Timmins and Freya Inkster

Susan Timmins was born and raised in Canada but moved to the UK in 1978. She trained at St Martins School of Art, London, and Maidstone College of Art, Kent. Susan began taking photographs in Shetland in 1985 and moved there permanently in 1992.

Susan Timmins and Freya Inkster began their mother-daughter collaboration in 2007. Birds Blades Shadows, a short experimental sound piece, is their first completed work. Freya and Susan care deeply about Shetland’s landscape and wildlife. They feel that the industrial sized windfarm proposed by Viking Energy will cause lasting damage to this unique environment. Birds Blades Shadows is an imagined nightmare flight through a noisy, chaotic and dangerous forest of turbines. It expresses in sound how we are thinking and feeling about the proposed windfarm and how it will affect Shetland.