Introducing Brad Eggleston’s Innovative New Art Gallery
Local Kingsbarns resident, Brad Eggleston, has come up with a unique way of getting his vibrant abstract artwork to an unlikely market. Normally, at this time of year, Brad would be exceptionally busy organising dog holidays, as he runs the Fife & St Andrews Barking Mad Franchise for his partner Jill.
Since the beginning of April 2020, as a result of Covid-19 and due to the collapse of the dog holiday market, Brad has been furloughed. This meant that Brad was afforded much more time during lockdown to get into his art studio, working on what he had hoped would be his first solo art exhibition at Dundee’s Dock Street Studios during May 2020. Sadly that, as well as his planned exhibitions in the East Neuk Open Studios, and the ever-popular Pittenweem Arts Festival, having all been cancelled, Brad found himself sitting with a mountain of stock collecting dust.
This summer has seen Kingsbarns become a hot tourist destination. Brad and his partner Jill, thought that there must be a way of getting his artwork exposed to this captive market on their doorstep. So, weather permitting at weekends, they decided to open up their front garden on Main Street in Kingsbarns as an outdoor gallery and open studio.
Together with a social media campaign, Brad made up signs advertising his open studio, and placed them both in the village and on the road verges to be seen by cars entering the village. Over the past weekends, this quirky front garden gallery has become a big hit with locals and visitors to Kingsbarns.
Zimbabwe-born Brad (AKA Umlungu of Umlungu Art) said, “I have been overwhelmed by the positive response, support, and enthusiasm for this unusual concept, especially from my local villagers. People have said how much they love the idea with its unique approach, in these difficult times. I am thrilled as well that my artwork has been such a big hit and the fact I have managed to sell quite a few paintings from this idea has made the disappointment of missing out on all the cancelled events of 2020, that much more bearable. Something good coming out of the Covid-19 epidemic and lockdown shows that we all need to look at life a little differently now, be more creative and bold in our business plans, and above all, be more supportive and understanding of small, local businesses.”
Weather permitting, Umlungu Art will be open again at 12 Main Street, Kingsbarns, KY16 8SZ : watch Facebook for updates.
You can also check out Brad’s artwork and photography at: www.umlunguart.com or follow him on Instagram at: https://www.instagram.com/umlunguart/