AN exhibition inspired by an SNP MP’s famous speech featuring artists from across Europe is to begin later this month.

Please Leave a Light On is the latest exhibition from Artists in Motion (Aim) and will be held in Dunoon Burgh Hall from April 19 to May 5.

The title comes from SNP MP Alyn Smith’s (below) famous speech in which he urged the European Union to “leave a light on” for Scotland after the Brexit vote.

The National:

Catriona Henderson Darroch is the organiser behind the event and stressed that it’s important for Scotland to keep collaborating with Europe despite being forced out of the EU.

“When we were forced to leave the EU through the Brexit vote, there were a lot of artists and creatives in Europe who were quite outraged by this,” she told The National.

“Many of them made contact and asked how they could support us even though it was all a done deal.

The National: The new exhibition focuses on the idea of 'light'. 

“We chatted and came up with the idea of having two exhibitions – one in Strasbourg (the seat of the European Parliament) and one here.”

The first exhibition, titled We’ll Leave a Light On has already been held in the French city and now it’s Scotland’s turn to host.

“As artists, we wanted to interpret that idea of light and what it might mean for how we are enlightened, either politically or personally.”

The exhibition will feature work from creatives from all across Europe – including Switzerland, Greece, France Germany and the Netherlands.

Founded by German painter Gerd Lepic and French photographer Eric Schaftlein in the midst of the Covid pandemic, Aim originally started as Artists in Masks.

The National: A variety of work from artists across Europe will be on display

“Because of Covid we couldn’t meet up and chat or have exhibitions but it grew to where all different people from different countries could communicate and get together to share ideas and make bold statements,” Darroch said.

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The exhibition is completely free and the organiser is proud to be hosting it in the Dunoon Burgh Hall, which she says is a rural gallery that “punches well above their weight”.

On the specific works people will be able to see, she added: “You’ll find art that contrasts between light and ark and work that is provocative in making you wonder what the work itself is all about.

“There’s various connotations, some people have electronic installations but even I’ve not seen everything yet.

“The only downside for people coming here is there are customs duties to be paid when sending artwork – one person had to pay £157 to get their art here so it shows they put in a lot of effort and feel strongly about this.

“It’s very much a collaboration and hopefully we’ll continue to grow as time goes on.”