Urban couldn’t happen without our faithful and passionate volunteers. These incredible people put their faith into action: sharing their skills and time with such generosity and humility. This is particularly apparent in our Friday morning art class, which is taught by Wilma, and led by Ann, Bill, and Nic.

The class was started by my colleague Anthea, and flourished under the leadership of volunteers like Gordon and Connie. Each of these people contributed to establish an atmosphere of encouragement, collaboration, and creativity. Wilma writes, “I treasure my Friday mornings in the class where the language of art and love flourish amidst life’s tough challenges.  We have become a close-knit community and the talent and dedication in Urban Art never cease to amaze me. I count it a privilege and joy to share my skills and experience with this community.”

Wilma was integral in the success of our art viewing event in Sloans just before Christmas. She shares, “(the event) was a huge gift to and an exuberant celebration of the Urban Art community. At a time when it had seemed impossible to arrange an exhibition, God provided a way forward and His abundant grace was almost tangible. The artists were so excited and very thankful for all the support of people attending the event. They were also greatly encouraged by the number of art works sold.”

For me, this event felt like such a special way to honour Wilma: a chance for her to watch our artists receive praise and admiration for the work she has encouraged with such patience and grace.

Now it’s Wilma’s turn to exhibit her own work, and the turn of our guests to experience an outing to a gallery, and get a feel for what might be possible for them in the future. As well as the display in Nicolls Gallery, Wilma has installed a street art trail, so our Camera Club will enjoy following this on their trip in a few weeks’ time. I and the volunteers will bring the art students along for a special viewing at the end of the month.

We at Glasgow City Mission would love for you to support and encourage Wilma. Here is her invitation:

Nesting 2020 is a series of still life paintings completed during the COVID-19 Lockdown. Each work features an everyday treasure settled snugly within a single bird nest and resembles a kind of embrace at a time when Humanity was longing for Embrace. The works will be exhibited in the intimate space of Nicolls Gallery in Glasgow from 17 to 26 March 2023. This time coincides with the third anniversary of the start of the UK Lockdown as well as the third birthday of the gallery.

The paintings will be offered for sale, though selling is not the focus of the exhibition; the hope is that visitors will find space and time to connect, linger and reflect.

All are welcome to the Opening on Friday 17 March between 4pm and 9pm.

If you prefer a quiet visit or want to revisit the exhibition, the artist will be present during the following opening times:

Saturday 18 March 10am – 6pm
Sundays 19 March 1pm – 6pm
Monday 20 to Thursday 23 March 10am – 5pm
Friday 24 March 10am – 6pm
Saturday 25 March 10am – 6pm
Sunday 26 March 1pm – 6pm