What a pane…

Photo 06-12-2014 13 27 15

As some of you know the lightbox was vandalised twice this week.  On Tuesday night a single pane was smashed – it was quickly replaced on Wednesday during the installation of The Shoe Box.  Then on Friday night nine panes were smashed – the Friday night frenzy appears to have coincided with other acts of vandalism in Portobello.   Unfortunately we only have 3 spare panes of glass, not enough to repair this damage.

The good news is that the positive support and response from the local community has been really amazing.   A very quick fundraising appeal has raised over £185 which will go towards replacing all the broken panes. If people would like to contribute towards the repairs and further maintenance/exhibitions please use the link below.

We are considering alternative ways to mount the glass to make the panes easier to install and we are looking at using modern plastics as an alternative.

Until we have time to fully clean out and repair the glass, we’ve wrapped up the lightbox to protect the box from the elements and to prevent small, inquisitive fingers getting cut on any remaining pieces of glass.

Also, we would like to hear from joiners/carpenters who may be able to help improve the fit-out of the inside of the lightbox to make it more efficient in changing the art installations (and getting in/out to replace broken panes!).

Once again thank you all for your support!


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If the shoe fits…

The Porty Light Box has been transformed into ‘Porty Shoe Box’ by local photographers Margaret Drysdale and Peter E Ross. They invited a variety of Portobello people to have their oldest pair of shoes photographed and displayed for all to see in the Porty Light Box at the junction of Bellfield Street and Portobello High Street.

The photographers see old shoes as having their own personality but also as somehow reflecting aspects of people’s identity and life experience. Some of the shoes are from the 1980s and some from just this year and every one of them suggests its own little story.

“It’s just a bit of fun really”, Maragret said, “but interestingly it has captured peoples imaginations and has sparked off some interesting conversations about shoes.”

The inaugural exhibition ‘Beach Delights’ by Marion Preez was this time last year and since then there have been a number of displays including the most recent ‘Power to Communicate’, which was one of a series of exhibits throughout the city by Outlook Project students as part of the Scottish Mental Health Art and Film Festival.

The site specific artwork ‘Porty Shoe Box’ will be on show throughout December and January.

[Written by Peter Ross for The Portobello Reporter]

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Power to Communicate

This month sees the launch of the 8th Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival (1st – 19th October) .  This October is all about power.  The power to create change.  Within Edinburgh and Lothian, there are many exhibitions and short films planned, with “Power to Communicate” being one of them.  “Power to Communicate” is an exploration of the power of communication through creative writing, photography, paper folding and digital art.  The series of exhibitions are the culmination of various workshops held throughout Edinburgh for socially isolated people and those with lived experience of mental ill health.  Here in Portobello,  two students of the Outlook Adult Education Project have produced an outdoor exhibition of digital artwork exploring the power of communicate. This is currently on display in the Porty Light Box now. IMG_1533 IMG_1538

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Old news…

It’s been a long time since I posted anything.  The phone box is still there at the corner of the street, but slowly reverting to being a simple item of street furniture, seen but not seen.  The rainbow images were created back in March.  I arranged to go into Towerbank Nursery and asked the children to help hand paint the rainbow.  That was fun and I think the simple charm of the children’s artwork really works.

Still, plans are in the pipeline for a new installation.  This time by the Edinburgh Outlook project as part of Scottish Mental Health Arts & Film Festival, now in its 6th year. The theme of this year’s event is ‘Power’ and Outlook will be creating work on the theme of ‘Power to Communicate’ – very fitting for the Lightbox.   Watch this space.

Rainbow by children from Towerbank Nursery

Rainbow by children from Towerbank Nursery


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Cheltenham’s red phone boxes to be turned into art galleries

Good luck Cheltenham not one but ten city centre phone boxes to be converted to art installations!   I always wondered if the phone boxes on the Edinburgh Royal Mile could have a similar treatment.  Any suggestions on who to contact at the local council?  I doubt they’ll have any spare cash what with the tram project though….



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Beach Delights and Postcards

Beach Delights

Beach Delights by Marion Preez, Photo by Max Blinkhorn

A Belated Happy New Year.   It’s been over a month since the successful unveiling of Beach Delights by Marion Preez, our first official installation.    Many thanks for everyone who attended.   The evening was an opportunity to celebrate the transition of moving from the technical part of the project – the restoration and the installation of the lights – to the display of artwork by local artists.  I’m sorry it’s taken me so long to write this but what with work, family and Christmas I just didn’t have the time to write anything.

On the evening, Marion gave a short explanation about her work, the following is taken from her blog www.myselfforyou.com

A few years ago I started creating self-portraits using a scanner. The scanner being designed for processing and translating data at high speed, whereas when taking these images I had to do the opposite: slow down and hold still.

Creating ‘Beach Delights’ I scanned my own and my kids feet and hands, a toy boot and ice cream and a stick; all referring to the different senses, materials and textures you experience when being on the beach as well as bringing playfulness into it.

Showing the images in bigger than real size invites to look at the hands, feet and objects more closely, to explore ourselves as well as the things and spaces around us.

I’ve just ordered some postcards which will be on sale in local shops, including COVE and Friday Street.   All proceeds will go towards the Porty Light Box project and also The Toddler Hut Rebuild Fund.   Many thanks for Max Blinkhorn for letting us use his photo.

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Beach Delights

Beach Delights

Announcing the official unveiling Beach Delights by Marion Preez

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