Thursday night will see another art exhibition being hosted upstairs in the Steel Shed, presenting paintings, sculptures and other artwork inspired by the theme Locality: 1. a neighbourhood or area \ 2. the site or scene of an event \ 3. the fact or condition of having a location or position in space.
Featuring the work of Emma Ainsley, Lewis Bissett, Michael Dawson, Paul Deslandes, Wes Gilpin, Cassandra Harrison , James Howden, Sarah Louise Keber, Kenris MacLeod, Alice Martin, Lynne McBride, Nikkita Morgan, Ross Spencer, Jacky Thow and Matt Wilson.
Opening 31st August 6 - 9pm | 1st - 10th September 12 - 4pm
The Normil Hawaiians concluded their two-night residency at DOK on Saturday 26. Despite competing with the final weekend of the Edinburgh Festival, a time when the bulk of the music, art and performance lovers drawn to the capital congregate around the city centre and South Side, a fair number of individuals made the journey down to Leith Docks to check out the eclectic sounds. Over the weekend the audience included members of a Russian circus troop, a sound engineer from Dresden, a former Hawkwind bassist, representatives of local indie outfit My Electric Love Affair and many, many others.
It's back to an art display for the next DOK event next weekend, but here are some mementoes of an excellent weekend of thought-provoking entertainment.
The first night of alternative band Normil Hawaiians two-night residency in our Steel Shed was a resounding success. The evening's entertainment started with a spoken word performance by renowned punk poet Rodney Relax. His first stage appearances were with Dunfermline punk band The Alternative in the early 80s, a band who featured on the 'Bullshit Detector' compilation produced by Crass. Life has a habit of coming around in circles, as 37 years later Rodney's next gig is with former Crass frontman Steve Ignorant!
Normil Hawaiians entranced the crowd with their diverse sonic soundscapes. Driven by a solid rhythm section, keyboards, synth, vocals, guitars and sundry other instruments (including flute) were layered over the mix. Separate musicians dipped in and out of the unfolding pieces, set against constant visuals projected onto the shed's plated walls behind the stage. They concluded with an acapella, subtle in melody but heavy in irony as it forecast how idyllic Heaven is going to be.
If you are going to be anywhere near Leith tonight, check out their second show!
Normil Hawaiians have been soundchecking in the Steel Shed, the DOK staff have been ensuring the bar is well stocked, and invitations have been sent out. Tomorrow night promises to be another exciting opening night at Leith's unique community artspace ... just a bit noisier than the recent photography and paintings exhibitions.
Normil Hawaiians developed from the late 70s/early 80s post-punk scene, recording a session for John Peel in May 1980 before continuing that decade with increasing creativity. Their third album Return of the Ranters (recorded at onetime Hawkwind bassist Dave Anderson's Foel Studio) juxtaposed upbeat musical experimentation with a lyrical denunciation of the political landscape (typified by Thatcher's riot police attacking legitimately striking miners and their families in northern England in 1984 and destroying the campsites of peaceable Stonehenge festival goers a year later.)
Thirty years may have passed but the collective (always more than just another 'band') have reconvened to unleash their blend of intoxicating music and barbed vocals. The double header of gigs at the DOK, ably supported by performance artists including self-styled punk poet Rodney Relax, promises to be a fantastic experience.
To those of a certain vintage, the punk explosion that reverberated through music in the late 1970s remains more than just a memory. Among its main attributes were a DIY ethos that encouraged self-expression and musical innovation rather than aspiring for celebrity status (although bands like The Clash certainly achieved mainstream success.) Many of the free-spirited youths who were inspired to form bands and create their own music all those decades ago have refused to grow old gracefully and have kept on writing songs that say something about Britain as it is, still as divided as ever. Which brings us to Normil Hawaiians.
Formed by musicians from various parts of England, Normil Hawaiians came together in the immediate post-punk period, a key moment in musical history. While the initial three-chord angst of early punk quickly became tired and cliched, the post-punk period ushered in wholesale experimentation. Normil Hawaiians certainly embodied this forward-looking spirit, and have touched many sonic bases during their on/off career, from earlier experiments with funk-tinged indie (reminiscent of Gang of Four or A Certain Ratio) and on into more psychedelic soundscapes.
DOK Artist Space will be hosting consecutive nights of live music by this unique collective on Friday 25th and Saturday 26th August. There will also be Performance Art, including spoken word by Rodney Relax. Two nights of eclectic and thought-provoking entertainment commence at 5pm.
The most recent photography exhibition hosted in The Steel Shed was a resounding success. Once again the shed provided a stunning backdrop to everything from black/white portraits and bold architectural images to abstract studies.
DOK Artist Space will be hosting an exhibition based around the theme 'Locality.' A diverse range of entries were received from local, national and international artists, covering various media, from painting to video, mostly of a very high standard. This promises to be an eclectic and stimulating event which we are greatly anticipating.
August 31st - 10th September 12 - 4pm
Opening 31st August 6 - 9pm
1. a neighbourhood or area
2. the site or scene of an event
3. the fact or condition of having a location or position in space
DOK will be hosting an exhibition showcasing selected works of photographers living and working in Scotland, under the banner 'Give photo credit where credit is due.' This event will run from 18th - 20th August, from 12 - 4pm, with an opening night on Wednesday 17th August, 6 - 9pm (with wine and other refreshments.)
Exhibiting artist include Jamie Dyer, Cora Ogbon James, Nicole Jones, Natalie Liconti, Josh Nuttall, Robby Ogilvie, Mark Osborne, Stephen Norman Young and Eve Stotesbury.
DOK will be hosting a special party to celebrate their first birthday, a year to the day of the exhibition that marked the official opening. There will be raffles, Art, Zines and two musical sets by Edinburgh postpunk band Noniconic.
Further details here.
Olivia Turner, co-director of DOK Artist Space, is one of the artists exhibiting within the intriguing labyrinth of corridors and rooms at Hidden Door 2017, in the partially-renovated Leith Theatre. Olivia is interested in spatial awareness and how the viewer navigates their way around and through spaces. She has created a more physical space, one that can be walked around and almost within. A space that is determined by light and shadows and the way in which you approach it.
DOK Artist Space
The Steel Shed,
Ocean Drive, Edinburgh
Buses: 11,16, 22, 34, 35 and 36.
At the far end next to Ocean Terminals
blue multi - storey car park
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