‘I have really enjoyed delving into Aberdeen’s past through the archival material brought together for the All About People Exhibition, I wanted to share my thoughts on certain archival images that particularly inspired or intrigued me.

First this illustration of Miss Bon Accord for ‘The Bon Accord and Northern Pictorial’ newspaper. This illustration shows a glamorous lady with a tower on her head and two leopards beside her. The tower and leopards are also found on the Aberdeen Coat of Arms, which we can see around the city on bollards and buildings. This illustration made me curious in trying to find the Coat of Arms as I walked around the city. It also inspired me to research the Coat of Arms and the history relating to it.

This photograph of a man riding an elephant with a young boy staring straight into the photograph also really captured my interest. There is an informal quality to this photograph as a suited man casually sits on top of an elephant. A grey elephant that walks in the grey granite city. I wonder about the circumstances of these majestic visitors and their past story within this city.

Overall, this exhibition has made me re-engage with Aberdeen’s people, places and it’s achievements and has reignited my imagination and interest.’

Images courtesy of Aberdeen City  Library Bon Accord and Northern Pictorial Archive and National Libraries of Scotland Moving Image Archive

Alexandra McGregor is a visual artist and performer based in Aberdeen. Her work explores feminine rites and traditions seeking out and questioning the present and post female. The narratives within her practice are embedded in historical material with her performances acting as recording mechanisms that seek to unearth ideas around the contemporary female.

Alexandra graduated in 2017 from Gray’s School of Art and from 2017-18 was Graduate in Residence for the Contemporary Art department. She has exhibited at the RSA New Contemporaries (2018) at the Scottish National Gallery Edinburgh, and ‘Positive Geographies’ as part of the Look Again festival (2018). More recently she has exhibited and performed in group exhibitions organised by Nomad. Alexandra recently worked as a volunteer Gallery Assistant in The Suttie Arts Space.