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New art shows environmental threats to the planet from space

© SYSTEMWillie Sutherland Spaceman
Willie Sutherland Spaceman

Glasgow may be the epicentre for all things cultural relating to climate change during Cop26, but “doon the watter” in Greenock’s old Tobacco Warehouse, artist Willie Sutherland is offering up a cosmic creative take on the threat to our planet.

A View From The Moon runs until Saturday. It’s one of several Inverclyde initiatives funded by Creative Carbon Scotland’s Climate Beacons.

It is being hosted by Greenock-based art charity, RIG Arts, which does a power of creative work with communities in Inverclyde.

Sutherland’s hands-on art, which includes a life-sized spaceman made out of recycled cardboard, examines the effects of war on our planet.

Visitors to the show are also being invited to peer into a Doll’s House made by Sutherland, experiencing the effect of sunlight on our planet.

Sutherland, 50, is a late-bloomer in terms of his art. He studied fashion and textiles at Galashiels in the early 1990s before working in a series of office jobs.

A period of rehab for alcohol addiction at the start of this year saw his inner artist unleashed and, since then, he has made hundreds of self-portrait style sculptures out of recycled cardboard.

His critically acclaimed debut solo exhibition, Evolution Of Wa, staged at Glasgow’s CCA earlier this year, consisted of a series of self-portrait sculptures charting his alcoholism.

View From The Moon features loans from family of the late George Wyllie, a long-term resident of Inverclyde. Visitors are invited to switch on the lights of a Wyllie sculpture of a nuclear submarine and look through Sutherland’s Great Cheese Telescope.

The exhibition also features small clay “Earth Refugees” made by Syrian and Afghan refugees from local Inverclyde charity, Your Voice.