Spring 2018

National Museums Scotland and Craft Scotland, Edinburgh.

National Museums Scotland (NMS) and Craft Scotland partnered each other to support a series of workshops Making Spaces to raise the profile of contemporary Scottish craft within the context of the new Art and Design galleries at the museum.

The workshops were designed specifically for vulnerable adults living with dementia and built on the success of the monthly Museum Socials – participants had reported increased enjoyment and a deeper engagement in events when working with experts, in this case, exemplary contemporary craft practitioners.

I ran a series of four mosaic workshops that enabled participants to go on a mosaic journey, exploring different aspects of this ancient craft. Each week we studied objects within the Art and Design galleries, leant about what had inspired the artist, designer, maker and about the materials and techniques used. Using the objects as inspiration, participants were guided through simple design stages leading to the creation of contemporary mosaics.

The workshops enabled participants to study a broad range of objects; from Bernat Klein’s colourful woven fabrics, through Roman and Hellenistic murrhine glass bowls, to the tessellating triangles of Scottish designer, Holly Fulton’s sequined dress.

Individuals built up confidence and relaxed in to the workshop programme as the weeks progressed. Many people made connections through mosaic with places they had visited on holiday or technical skills and interesting discussions developed which we could all share. By the last workshop we were a group, all enjoying the transformational aspects of making.

We cannot thank you, and the museum enough for this excellent programme of art workshops to support people living with dementia.


We have loved being part of it, learning new things, it has benefited us in so many different ways.


Photos: Neil Hanna