ANGUS MCPHEE - Weaver of Grass

ANGUS MCPHEE or MACPHEE was a crofter from Uist who spent almost 50 years in a Highland psychiatric hospital. During this time he chose not to speak - instead he wove a series of incredible costumes out of grass. These he hung on trees in the hospital grounds.

This blog follows the progress of HORSE + BAMBOO THEATRE as they develop and tour a show about Angus....

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Angus back in South Uist

On our visit to South Uist this past summer I revisited the Kildonan Centre, which has a fascinating collection of all sorts of artifacts, photographs, and a heritage and cultural amenity which includes a museum, a craft shop, a Fèis room for ceilidhs, music and dance, a cafe and an archaeology room. The museum itself, Taigh Tasgaidh Chill Donnain, is owned by the South Uist Historical Trust, and I wondered if it had within its collection any material relating to Angus MacPhee. The woman on the reception desk was helpful, but hadn't heard of Angus. To be fair she admitted that she was a fairly recent incomer and said she was certain other volunteers would know far more than she did herself. I said how wonderful it would be if a corner of the museum could be found to host a display about Angus, and mentioned this to other people I met on the island. 

Taigh Tasgaidh Chill Donnain or the Kildonan Centre

I was delighted to find the Creativity in Care website and a page about the exhibition at The Bishops Palace, Eden Court, Inverness towards the end of last year entitled 'Angus MacPhee & Other Memories' which contained some of Angus's woven artefacts. 

Creativity in Care has grown out of the work undertaken by Karrie Marshall and Chris King of Zenwing Puppets. Karrie and Chris were very helpful when we first started our exploration of Angus's background, specifically taking Esther and Helen to see the site of Craig Dunain. They have very kindly even provided a link to this blog (among other Angus related sites) on the Creativity in Care website. 

Excitingly, I noticed an update - "These pieces of Angus MacPhee’s work are going home to South Uist to the Kildonan Museum" , so it looks as if, at least for a short period, the museum will now be having a section about Angus and his work. The photographs below are from the Creativity in Care site, and the Kildonan Museum website is announcing a "Weaver of Grass' exhibition from April 2012.

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