Alberta Whittle

15 October – 19 November 2005

Exhibitions New Work Scotland Programme

Alberta Wittle's work wants to disrupt the master narrative of the West, which traffics in myths and stereotypes of racial "Otherness". The examination of the mystical ideologies linked to hysteria, ritual and intellectual colonisation were fundamental in the creation of a subversive anthropological account of a fictional mythology. Alberta planned to infiltrate the domains in which they thrive: literature, official histories and ethnographies through the production of drawings, video and installation.

The film Fiat Lux was informed by the twentieth century writer Jean Rhys's novel Wide Sargasso Sea, which tells of the descent into perceived madness by Mr Rochester's colonial first wife Bertha, who is renamed Antoinette. The film includes footage shot in Barbados (Wittle's childhood home) of a spiritual baptism ritual derived from the Ethiopian high church along with Antoinette/Bertha, who is depicted being beaten with fish. Also featured was a wall drawing of more iconic religious symbols including the Madonna, Ethiopian angels and monkeys.

Download the exhibition information here

Read the New Work Scotland 2005 newspaper here

New Work Scotland Programme was an initiative launched by Collective in 2000. Through an open call, New Work Scotland Programme identified and supported some of the most promising new artists working in Scotland - providing them with the opportunity to create new work and bring it to the attention of a wider public. The 2005 participants were Alberta Wittle, Neil Clements, Will Duke and Alexander Stalmann.

New Writing Scotland grew out of New Work Scotland Programme and was initiated in 2004 in collaboration with Edinburgh College of Art's Centre for Visual and Cultural Studies to promote creative writing about the visual arts coupled with targeted support to the exhibiting artists - providing them with them with their first artists text.

This is an archived programme entry.

Thomas Abercromby, John, video still, 2023. Courtesy of the artist. Photo: Daniel Hughes. Featured: Julia Lau and Nevil Jose.

Thomas Abercromby


21 Oct 2023 — 23 Dec 2023

Liza Sylvestre, asweetsea, video still, 2022. Courtesy of the artist.

Liza Sylvestre


21 Oct 2023 — 23 Dec 2023