City Art Centre - Writers' Museum - Queensferry Museum - Newhaven Museum - Museum of Childhood
The Museum of Edinburgh - The People's Story Museum - Lauriston Castle
Travelling Gallery - Nelson Monument - Scott Monument


***St Bernard's Well opens to the public***

click here for opening times & a brief history



Bond Bound
Ian Fleming and the Art of Cover Design

  City Art Centre
2 Market Street. Tel: 0131 529 3993
  5 July - 14 September  

Admission to Bond Bound and China: A Photographic Portrait
Adult £5, Concession £3.50, Children
£2.50, Adult Season £10, Family £10

Casino Royale, the first of the Bond novels
spanning half a century, was a compelling
mixture of sex, style and violence that
soon propelled 007 into the most famous
fictional secret agent in history.

Over 100 million copies of the Bond
novels have been sold worldwide and the
suave secret agent has been an
inspirational subject for cover designers.

Bond Bound charts the role of artists in
creating and defining the Bond look and
features book covers, film posters, letters
and previously unseen archive material.
Stretching back more than half a century,
the covers also provide revealing snapshots
of shifting attitudes to sex, feminism and
the changing international climate.

The exhibition comes right up to date
with artwork from Charlie Higson’s Young
series, The Moneypenny Diaries by
Samantha Weinberg and the recently
released Devil May Care by Sebastian
Faulks writing as Ian Fleming.

Fleming’s books also include Chitty Chitty
Bang Bang
and Thrilling Cities, his collected
travel journalism and Edinburgh will see
the addition to the exhibition of John
Burningham’s original timeless
illustrations for Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Bond Bound is a collaboration between
The Fleming Collection and Ian Fleming
Publications working closely with Ian Fleming’s worldwide publishing partners.

pic: Ian Fleming and the Art of Cover Design


pic: Ian Fleming and the Art of Cover Design




A Photographic Portrait

  City Art Centre
2 Market Street. Tel: 0131 529 3993
  5 July - 14 September  

Admission to Bond Bound and China: A Photographic Portrait
Adult £5, Concession £3.50, Children
£2.50, Adult Season £10, Family £10

China: A Photographic Portrait examines changing life in China as viewed through the lenses of 250 Chinese photographers. It is a remarkably revealing self portrait. Comprising almost 600 frank images taken between 1951 and 2003, the exhibition records in detail the daily lives of Chinese people, of all ages and from diverse backgrounds, at work, rest and play.

The photographs strikingly portray the impact social upheaval has had on the individual in recent generations, tracking their journey over five decades to recover a sense of individual self-worth. Divided into four distinct themes - existence, relationship, desire and time - and selected from more than 100,000 works by over 1,000 photographers, the exhibition is a highlight of the year-long China Now In Scotland festival.

A new addition to the exhibition is a collection of short films which provide a further insight into the cultural and social life of a country which is home to a fifth of the world’s population.

A special series of talks and events on various aspects of Chinese life and culture are running in conjunction with the exhibition.

Click here for full details of our talks, workshops and family events to support this exhibition.
(note: Adobe pdf format: 441kb - opens in new browser window)

From the Guangdong Museum of Art, in
Guangzhou, China. Arranged in partnership with the Confucius Institute for Scotland as part of China Now In Scotland.

pic: Lu Xianyi. August 1997, Guiyang, Guizhou. The first time to visit the city. (detail) © Lu Xianyi

Lu Xianyi. August 1997, Guiyang, Guizhou.
The first time to visit the city. (detail) © Lu Xianyi

pic: Wang Wenyang. 1993, Beijing Mother and daughter putting on makeup in front of their mirrors. (detail) © Wu Jialin

Mother and daughter putting on
makeup in front of their mirrors.
Wang Wenyang. 1993, Beijing , © Wang Wenyang


Highlights from the Collection

  City Art Centre
2 Market Street. Tel: 0131 529 3993
  until end December 2008  

Admission free

The City Art Centre has one of the best collections of Scottish art in the country. This was acknowledged by the Scottish Government in October 2007, when the City Art Centre’s collection of Scottish Art was recognised to be of national significance, in a scheme managed by the Scottish Museums Council.

Its core is the collection of the Scottish Modern Arts Association, founded in 1907, and donated to the city in the early 1960s. It contains key works by all the major Scottish artists from McTaggart to Eardley. At the same time, Miss Jean F Watson established a Trust enabling the City Art Centre to continue to acquire work.

As a result the collection is exceptional. There are views of Edinburgh and portraits of citizens. The Glasgow Boys are represented, as are the Scottish Colourists. The collection includes works by the Edinburgh School including Gillies and Redpath, while the post-war generation is represented by Paolozzi, Blackadder and Bellany.

In 1997 the City Art Centre was given part of the Scottish Arts Council collection and has recently acquired challenging contemporary work through the National Collecting Scheme for Scotland. The City Art Centre collection’s new status will ensure that it is cared for, protected and promoted to a wider audience.
Recognised will include iconic works from the collection, giving a taste of its range and diversity.

pic : Stanley Cursiter (1887-1976), The Fair-Isle Jumper, oil on canvas,1923. © DACS
Stanley Cursiter (1887-1976),
The Fair-Isle Jumper, oil on canvas,
1923. © DACS



Festival Scavengers

  City Art Centre
2 Market Street. Tel: 0131 529 3993
  The Hunt: Saturday 16 August, 9am - 10pm
£12.50 per person / £50 per team
The Exhibition: 18 - 24 August

Register a team and set out in search of fame, glory, £2,000 CASH and the chance to participate in an exhibition in the Edinburgh Art Festival at the City Art Centre.

Edinburgh bred artist, Joshua Sofaer has created the supreme scavenger hunt. With only nine hours and the whole of Edinburgh as a hunting ground, teams are invited to register, pack their A-Zs and race to win.

Forty teams will be issued with 100 clues. These clues help teams earn points; the team with the most points wins £2,000. After deciphering the clues, the teams must beg, borrow, barter and bluff their way around the city, scavenging the items required.

At the end of the day, teams can expect to have collected a range of strange and wonderful objects, many of which relate to the Art Festival itself and the city of Edinburgh. Sofaer will use the objects
collected in the hunt as the basis for a week long exhibition at the City Art Centre beginning Monday 18 August.

To register a team log on to
or phone 07790 235963.

pic : F C B Cadell, The Black Hat, 1914

“Joshua Sofaer takes participatory art to exciting heights with his Scavengers project.”
SF Weekly
(SFMOMA Scavengers)

“Scavengers encouraged participants to engage with art in a purposeful way – and even to become artists themselves.”
New Statesman
(Tate Scavengers)


The Art Cart at the City Art Centre
Family Fun with Paintings

  City Art Centre
2 Market Street. Tel: 0131 529 3993
  weekends until September 2008  

Have fun with the Art Cart on the ground floor of the City Art Centre.  Our amazing cart is jam packed with textures and mixed media for you to explore.  Learn about the fantastic paintings from your city's permanent collection.  Have a close look at the wind blowing in the summer meadow in Joan Eardley's July Fields and capture this in pastels.  Create a fantastic self-portrait inspired by J. D. Fergusson's portrait of The Blue Hat.  Experiment with vibrant colour and different poses.  The exciting fabric design used by Louise Hopkins will inspire you to experiment with printmaking techniques to build up an organic repeating pattern.  Create a special patchwork landscape inspired by the landscape of William Gillies.  Use texture papers and learn about colour and tone in painting.

Every weekend from now till September

Saturday 10 am - 4.45 pm

Sunday 12 noon - 4.45 pm

Every weekday in the school summer holidays 10 am - 4.45 pm

Out of the Blue
West Pans
18th Century Scottish Porcelain
  Museum of Edinburgh
142 Canongate, Royal Mile. Tel: 0131 529 4143
  27 June - 23 August  

Between 1749 and 1832 several potteries were active in the village of West Pans on the southern shore of the Forth . Although there had been earlier experiments in porcelain manufacturing only one, William Littler, is known to have produced soft paste porcelain.

Littler's work is exhibited and celebrated in Out of the Blue, West Pans 18th Century Scottish Porcelain at the Museum of Edinburgh .

An associated catalogue has been written by Scottish porcelain expert George Haggarty FSA, FSAScot.

The exhibition has received generous support from Historic Scotland, Bonham's auctioneers, Friends of the City Art Centre and Museums, National Museums of Scotland and Mr Ronald Haggarty.

The exhibition is accompanied by the following free lunchtime lecture series (1.30pm) at the City Art Centre, 2 Market Street . Call 0131-529-3962/3 for further information and to reserve a place.

Thursday 17 July, 1.30pm
The Belfield Ceramic Production Site Near Prestonpans
Excavations at the site of the Belfield pottery discovered beneath its floor a large assemblage of earlier pottery almost certainly waste from the pottery of George Gordon. This has given us a unique insight into the range of Prattware and Pearlwares being produced in the Prestonpans area during the first half of the 19th century. 
George Dalgleish, Principal Curator of Scottish History, National Museums Scotland .

Thursday 24 July, 1.30pm
The Delftfield Pottery Glasgow - 18th century Tin-glaze Earthenware: Some New Evidence
Continuing work on a large assemblage of excavated Tin Glazed Earthenware shards from the site of the Delftfield pottery in Glasgow, is throwing much new light on this important Scottish pottery. This is especially significant as the wares are rare in Scotland, the pottery being built mainly to service the American and Caribbean market.
Jim Grey, research volunteer at the National Museums Scotland.

Friday 25 July, 1.30pm
West Pans – A Scottish Ceramic Production Site & 18th Century Scottish Porcelain
William Littler, who was born in Burslem in Staffordshire, had by 1764 established Scotland's only commercial 18th century porcelain factory at West Pans, south west of Musselburgh. Initially successful, he soon began to struggle, but carried on until 1777, during which time he was producing a large range of porcelain objects, which only now are getting the attention they deserve.
George Haggarty, Scottish ceramic expert and research associate at the National Museums Scotland.

Monday 28 July, 1.30pm
The English Designer and Modeller John Wornell and the Grangemouth Terracotta Works
This lecture will establish Wornell's past, including his teaching in London ; what was made, exhibited and sold by the Grangemouth Coal Company and by John Millar locally and at the international exhibitions; what Wornell did afterwards; and who replaced him at Grangemouth.
Godfrey Evans, Principal Curator of European Decorative Arts, National Museums Scotland.

Thursday 31 July, 1.30pm
Cantagalli and a 19th century Italian Pottery – the Scottish Dimension
On 31 August 1880, Margaret Tod and Ulisse Cantagalli were married in the Roman Catholic Cathedral of St. Mary's, Edinburgh. This talk will explore the possibility that it may have been his Edinburgh wife's wealth which allowed Ulisse, with his undoubted talent, to produce in his Florence workshops some of the finest lustre decorated ceramics ever made.
Sheila Forbes, research volunteer at the National Museums Scotland.

Thursday 7 August, 1.30pm
Excavations of Two Major Glasgow Ceramic Production Sites
The recent upsurge in industrial archaeological activity in Glasgow has seen the excavations of three major 19th century potteries. The speaker is responsible for the two largest of these, Verreville and Caledonian. This work is of international importance and shows conclusively that Scotland was in the forefront of 19th century kiln technology, and that these enterprises were producing incredibly large amounts of pottery.
Candy Hathaway.


Learning and Access


Based at the City Art Centre, the Learning and Access section provides a life-long learning service for all of the venues managed by the City of Edinburgh Museums and Galleries and their surrounding communities.

Working with people of all ages and abilities, staff deliver hands on activities, art and craft workshops, lectures, seminars and study days. For further information contact Learning  and Access on 0131 529 3962/3. 

Two new programmes of events, for families and adults, are underway at Lauriston Castle

click here for full details on adult & family craft programme
(note: Adobe pdf format: 527kb - opens in new browser window)

click here for full details on historical lectures
(note: Adobe pdf format: 440kb - opens in new browser window)

pic: Lauriston Castle Lauriston Castle, Davidsons Mains, a popular venue for workshops and events.

A Scots Helicon
Portraits of 9 contemporary Scottish women writers by Edinburgh Artist Anna Caro

  The Writers' Museum
Lady Stair's Close, Lawnmarket, Royal Mile. Tel: 0131 529 4901
  12 April - 12 July  

Inspired by Mount Helicon, the mythical home of the nine muses, this new exhibition at The Writers’ Museum features portraits of 9 contemporary Scottish women writers: Kate Atkinson, Helen Dunwoodie, Margaret Elphinstone, A.L. Kennedy, Joan Lingard, Val McDermid, Denise Mina, Dilys Rose and Louise Welsh.

The portraits are the work of Edinburgh artist Anna Caro, a graduate of Edinburgh College of Art. She continues to live and work in Edinburgh and has exhibited across the UK and in the USA.

click here for more information
(note: Adobe pdf format: 60kb - opens in new browser window)

pic : Louise Welsh
Anna Caro, Louise Welsh



An Electric Shock of Delight:
Sir Walter Scott and the Waverley Novels

  The Writers' Museum
Lady Stair's Close, Lawnmarket, Royal Mile. Tel: 0131 529 4901
  19 July - 7 January 2009  

It was 500 years ago that King James IV granted a patent to Andrew Myllar and Walter Chepman to establish a printing press in Edinburgh. The first fruit of their loom, The Complaint of the Black Night, dates from April 1508. This 500th anniversary is an appropriate moment to highlight Edinburgh 's rich printing and publishing heritage. The City of Edinburgh 's Museums are involved in two shows:

The Writers' Museum, in the Lawnmarket, is staging An Electric Shock of Delight: Sir Walter Scott and the Waverley Novels. The aim of the exhibition is to recover the ‘lost Scott' who was submerged as the great writer became a cultural institution. The exhibition is part of a wider project to complete a critically-edited series of the Waverley Novels just as Scott originally wrote them. To achieve this the exhibition returns to Scott's manuscripts, proofs and first editions.

The People Behind the Book Trade in Scotland
  Museum of Edinburgh
142 Canongate, Royal Mile. Tel: 0131 529 4143
  13 September - 17 January 2008  

The Museum of Edinburgh, in the Canongate, is the venue for The People Behind the Book Trade in Scotland, which is organised by the Scottish Archive of Print and Publishing History Records (SAPPHIRE). The exhibition, which runs from 13 September 2008 to 17 January 2009, tells the story of all of those who contributed to Edinburgh's printing and publishing heritage, from authors, to papermakers, printers and readers.

Big Case
  Lauriston Castle
Cramond Road South, Davidson's Mains Tel: 0131 336 2060
  2 - 13 August  

At Lauriston Castle in Davidson's Mains, you will find Big Case , a contemporary art exhibition created by post graduate students from the sculpture and glass departments of Edinburgh College of Art. Working within the space of the Victorian Glasshouse located in the grounds, it is a contemporary artwork in a traditional setting.

Click here to contact the website for details of talks and workshops.

On Edge
Travelling Gallery
Throughout Scotland
22 August - 5 December  

A group exhibition of artists whose varied work explores activities and issues relating to the sea or coastline of Scotland, as well as other coastal countries. The exhibition will include film, photography, sculpture and painting. Artists include Céline Duval, Thomas Joshua Cooper, duo Matthew Dalziel and Louise Scullion, ts Beall, Michael Mersinis and Charlotte Watters.

The Travelling Gallery, Scotland’s unique mobile art gallery, brings stunning contemporary art exhibitions to schools and communities throughout Scotland.

Funded by the Scottish Arts Council and organised by the City of Edinburgh Council, the Travelling Gallery tours two exhibitions a year complemented by an award winning Education Programme of artist-led workshops, talks and events.

You will find a friendly welcome in the Travelling Gallery as well as inspiring artworks from contemporary artists around the world. Find out where we are on
or call Vicky on 0131 529 3930.

We could be in a carpark near you.

pic: Horizons IV, Céline Duval
Horizons IV, Céline Duval

Banner Bright


The People's Story Museum
Canongate Tolbooth, 163 Canongate, Royal Mile. Tel: 0131 529 4057


A new group of banners can now be seen at the People’s Story. These include three recently collected banners: Pride Scotland, Edinburgh College of Domestic Science, and Leith Provident Co-operative Women’s Guild. The forthcoming celebration of 500 years of the printed word is represented by two banners relating to the printing trade and John Bright, a campaigner for the abolition of slavery, features on a reform banner.

pic: Banner made for the Vigil for the Scottish Parliament 1992-3
Banner made for the Vigil for the
Scottish Parliament 1992-3

St Bernard's Wells


St Bernard's WellSt Bernard's Well, situated by the Water of Leith in Stockbridge, will be open to the public from 12pm to 3pm on the following days:

Sunday 6 July
Sunday 10 August
Sunday 17 August
Sunday 24 August
Sunday 31 August
Sunday 27 September (as part of doors open day)

This offers an excellent opportunity to visit an historical monument which is normally closed to the public. Thanks are due to volunteers from the Dean Village Association for their help with this.

A Brief History
The mineral springs, which later became St. Bernards Well are said to have been discovered by three boys from Heriot's Hospital. The mineral waters, similar to those at Harrogate, became popular and in 1760 the area was roofed over. In 1789, the owner, Francis Garden of Troup (Lord Gardenstone), then a Senator of the College of Justice, commissioned a new pump house.

Architect Alexander Nasmyth's design was based on Sybils Temple at Tivoli with an open rotunda of Roman Doric style, with ten columns in a circle surrounding a statue of Hygeia, executed by Coade of London. There are alternating paterae and triglyphs on the entablature, surmounted by a lead dome with a pineapple finial.


In 1887 the building was extensively renovated, at the expense of the then owner, William Nelson (the publisher). Thomas Bonnar was commissioned to carry out the work. The original statue of Hygeia had fallen into such a bad state of repair it was replaced by a new marble figure, sculpted by DW Stevenson. After completion, Nelson's Trustees offered the well to Edinburgh Town Council as a gift.

The original Coadestone statue of Hygeia was replaced by a new white marble figure, sculpted by DW Stevenson. After completion, it was also offered to Edinburgh Town Council as a gift.

For further information on any of the events and activities listed on the website, contact our Marketing Unit on
0131 529 7902