Collection Simon Paul

R O G E R   A C K L I N G
M A X I N E  A T T A R D
T H O R U N N   B J O R N S D O T T I R

R O B E R T   C A L L E N D E R
D A V I D   C A S S
T A C I T A   D E A N
I A N   H A M I L T O N   F I N L A Y

M I C H E L E   F L E T C H E R
D A N   H I L L I E R
N O R I O   I M A I
S T E P H E N   K A V A N A G H
J A M I E   K I N R O Y
P E T E R   L I V E R S I D G E
K A O R I   M A T S U M U R A
N I K A   N E E L O V A
E L I Z A B E T H   O G I L V I E
C O R N E L I A   P A R K E R
K A T I E   P A T E R S O N
T O N Y   P O R T E L L I
G E R H A R D   R I C H T E R
N I A L   S T E V E N S O N

I did not set out to become an art collector. I just needed an inspiring beacon of art.  

I recall the sense of purpose and thrill when I purchased 100 Billion Suns, 2011 and All the Dead Stars, 2012 by Katie Paterson. At the time (2012) I did not want these works as much as I felt that needed them - works by an artist who for me defiened the best aspects of contemporary art, as a reality that I still wanted to be part of.

I had to learn the importance of art confrontation - i.e. being challenged by art. This has encouraged me to acquire further works that would equally challenge and support me. The art works engage with reality in a conceptual, physical, spiritual  manner and their aesthetic is informed by their own process. At times there is a personal connection between these artists and myself.  

Early on I had considered this art just for my personal use, but by 2013, I started to envisage these works as the driving force behind my project 73 | 75 | 77. This is when I considered the possibility of a collection.

In the latter part of 2013, my partner was living through an incurable cancer. One day in his attemtps at joie de vivre he surprised me with a limited edition of a signed publication of Gerhard Richter’s November. We considered the exising artworks up to that point and I managed to convince my partner to name this art collection afer his name. Simon Paul MacFadyen died on the 12th February 2014 at the age of 38.

Since then, collecting art has taken on a deeper meaning - that of corresponding through life, which for me still links with the project 73 | 75 | 77. The latter has become a contemplative work journey on the potential power of retreat and where art can arrest.

I remember such arrest when I walked the labyrinthine path of the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art and was confronted by Chaïm Soutine’s, Le Mas Passe-Temps, Céret, 1920 -1921. I am grateful that though I cannot afford to own a Soutine, I was not denied this experience.  

Collection Simon Paul is characterised by the possibility of a connection and a sensibility humanity can have with its environment and itself. It treasures the accessible and inclusive aspects of art and in turn aims to offer such accessibility and inclusivity.


voewood 2012-2013
| sunlight on wood | 2012-2013 | 15 x 9 cm | unique | acquired 2014 | photographed by the artist

My first and only face to face encounter with Roger Ackling (1947 – 2014) was in 2010 when he showed up as the external examiner for the degree work. Acking’s unassuming demeanour was evident and likewise in his work I found inspirational. I found somehting deeply spiritual and sublime in Ackling’s work where his attention to the sun and the found object are treated with equal respect and sensitivity. He takes on this process in his life’s work. It is not a mere signature that he cultivates but an explorative and meditative journey that rejoices in a process that links and corresponds and the artist becomes the inbetween entity in this conversation between drawing source and surface.

Further reading | Roger Ackling’s Obituary | Profile



from Surtsey series| acrylic on canvas | 2009 | dimensions in cm | acquired 2009| photographed by the artist

Thorunn and I exhibited together in Edinburgh in 2009 at Gladstone Gallery with a show entitled Surtr N Ogygia. At that time, my practice was starting to shift from 2D-3D and I was about to distance myself from painting. However, my foundation in art through the language of paint has influenced my responses to the world around me. At that time both of us were looking at Islands - Thorunn has taken the icelandic island of Surtsey as her focus of study, while I was looking at rock formation around Gozo. Thorunn had an expressive, deliberate and sure mark which I was drawn to. We decided to exhchange a work each and this particular painting stood out because of the range of mark as well as economic execution. For me it stands on its own but it also reminds me of all the engergy of work coming togehter in that exhibition, when mark making was still very important to me.

Further reading  | Thorunn Bjornsdottir



| box publication | 2015| 43 x 31 cm | edition 38/500 | acquired 2015 | photographed by Tim Bremner

Edition details |

A2B/In box/Limited Edition 500/ISBN

Box/430x310mm/finished fine paper

GF Smith fine acid free or archival paper used throughout

6 large-scale folding images, and several A3 limited edition prints on archival paper

1 thread sewn bound book/images/writing/essay: Professor Andrew Patrizio/University of Edinburgh/author/ 7,000 words

2 bound books, square format /images of work

1 double bound book, artist’s research, texts & poetry

Original, editioned intaglio print. Printed especially for A2B by Robert Adam, Graal Press. Presented in archival sleeve

Fold-out introduction to the Robert Callender International Residency for Young Artists

Set of 12 mini prints

Feature film/filmed interviews/discussions by artist/friends/young recipients/International Residency established in his name. Edited footage of Callender’s work practice/research/filmed/Stoer Point/Gerrards boatyard/studios Leith/Sea Loft. DVD + link, future viewing to dedicated website.

Before his death in the summer of 2011, the artist Robert Callender and his wife Elizabeth Ogilvie discussed a retrospective of his work, in the form of a publication: A2B. Robert conceived of this not as a book, but more a selection of small pieces collected in a 'rummage-box' or treasure trove. Elizabeth began fundraising for the project in the autumn of 2011, with private subscribers immediately responding to the idea of A2B. The generosity of these first subscribers enabled early research, development and production of a mock-up of the publication: a box containing several individual publications and pull-out items. In 2013 the project was recognised with a significant award by Creative Scotland. This work was launced in June 2015. In 2012 I was the first recipient of the Robert Callender International Residency for Emerging Artists. Since then I worked closely with Elizabeth Ogilvie and Lateral Lab.

Further reading | Robert Callender



seascape | watercolour on found drawer | 2012-2013 | 15 x 9 cm | unique | acquired 2014 | photographed by Create Create
seascape | watercolour on found drawer | 2012-2013 | 15 x 9 cm | unique | acquired 2014 | photographed by Create Create
seascape | watercolour on found drawer | 2012-2013 | 15 x 9 cm | unique | acquired 2014 | photographed by Create Create

Currently working between Greece and the UK, David Cass is an artist and occasional curator. He has exhibited his multi-media artwork in a range of venues and festivals since graduating in 2010: including group showings at Christie’s, The Royal Academy, Royal Scottish Academy, Istanbul Museum of Modern Art, MAXXI Museum, Cop21, 26, & 27; and solo presentations at The Scottish Gallery, British Institute of Florence and Venice Biennale.  David and I have shared a studio at Edinburgh College of Art and curated our graduation space in 2010. Since then our friendship fuelled conversations, collaborations, and mutual support that have definitely influenced my work and enriched my outlook on art. David’s work ethic and sensibility towards the found object and conscientous approach toward contemporary art and the environemnt are inspirational and Collection Simon Paul prides itself to include these works by David.    

Further reading | David Cass



Floating Dolmen | offset lithograph with screenprint on GardaPat 13 Kiara | 2009 | 25.4 x 33.9 cm (image size) 38.2 x 45.8 (paper size) | edition /50 | acquired 2012 | photographed by...

Tacita Dean was born in Canterbury, England (1965) and now lives and works in Berlin. Dean is well known for her work in 16mm film. Her films are often characterised by long takes and fixed camera positions resulting in the viewer’s heightened awareness of the passing of time. Dean also works across a range of other media including drawing and photography but all her works have a strong interest in time, history and narrative. Major exhibitions have included ‘Analogue’ at Schaulager in Basel in 2006 - the most comprehensive retrospective of Dean’s career to date - and a solo exhibition at Tate Britain in 2001. Dean won the Hugo Boss award in 2007 and was nominated for the Turner Prize in 1998 (Ingleby Gallery).  

The associations that I make when deciding to buy an artwork can be quite particular to the place and time as well as the aim and purpose. I remember clearly that I thought of the prehistoric Menhir rock that is situated in Qala, my home town and thought that this would be an appropriate piece to complement the site of 73 | 75 | 77.

Further reading  | Tacita Dean


I A N  H A M I L T O N

The art of Ian Hamilton Finlay is unusual for encompassing a variety of different media and discourses. Poetry, philosophy, history, gardening and landscape design are among the genres of expression through which his work moves, and his activities have assumed concrete form in cards, books, prints, inscribed stone or wood sculptures, room installations and fully realised garden environments.  

excerpt by Prudence Carlson from Ian Hamilton Finaly

These works of Ian Hamilton Finlay are treasured by the collection as they were a gift from Elizabeth Ogilive and Robert Callender to the artist for work, connection, and friendship.

Further reading  | Ian Hamilton Finaly



Night Study I | oil on arches huile | 2021 | 23vx 31 cm | unique | acquired 2021 | photographed by the artist

Originally from Canada, Michele now lives and works in London. She studied at Goldsmiths (BA hons Fine Art and Critical Theory) and Chelsea, graduating with and MA in 2007. Michele received The Neville Burston Award for Painting (Goldmiths College) and won the inaugural Marmite Prize for Painting. She was also a Royal Overseas League Scholar at Hospitalfields, via the Patrick Alan Fraser Trust, Scotland. Michele ‘s painting Compost was a prize winner in the 2020 John Moores Painting Prize.

This work was acquired through the artist support pledge launced during Covid-19. I was drawn to Fletcher’s work due to her particular confident mark. For me it manages to allude at a narrative within her abstract presentation that draws me into the work in a sybiotic manner.

Further reading  | Michele Fletcher



Seraphim I | hand pulled screen print on Somerset soft-white smooth paper| 2022 | 45 x 60 cm | 50/150 | acquired 2023

Dan Hillier makes collages and ink drawings using a mixture of found imagery and his own imaginings. His work is born out of a passion for line work and collage, a love of archaic imagery and an urge to produce pictures that provoke humour, wonder and a certain subconscious recognition in the viewer.

The acquisition of this work was a result of a particular longing. My grandfather’s place was a source of amusement as well as a place that I wanted to escape from. I have used Ron Arad’s words when he at one point referred to a shift in people’s attitude ‘what they used to hate, they came to love’. In this sense I find a mystical/mythical energy in the form of latent memory that I associate with the space and wanted an artwork that would encapsulate that. There were a lot of cartoons that as a child inspired me and that I used to hide from elements of this place. The Masters of the universe was one of those and Seraphim I has become the result of this persuit.  

Artist’s website  | Dan Hillier


Work - Circle | signed exhibition postcard| 2012 | 00 x 00 cm | acquired 2012

Since the very start of his artistic career, Norio Imai has challenged the dogma of artistic convention. He creates bulbous reliefs that exist somewhere in-between object and painting. By placing material underneath the surface of his works, Imai creates monumental monochrome white paintings out of almost nothing. He considers white to be the ultimate colour, a non-colour that combines all colours in perfect harmony. Imai often repaints his work with an additional layer of paint to preserve the depth and purity of the whiteness. To him, white is a landscape made up of nothingness and emptiness.
This work is important for the collection. It has a humble origin - in the sense it is simply an exhibition advert postcard that was signed by the artist by chance. I was doing an artist residency in Japan (2012) and I went to see this exibition. In a particular event organised by Yoshihito Kawabata, an artist whose work I deeply admire, Norio Imai turned up and I could not believe the coincidence after seeing his exhibition that was instrumental for me. Instrumental in the sense where I could see a line of work informing its own aesthetics. In this sense it was an important acquisition for Collection Simon Paul. At that time that I acquired this work I did not know that there would be a collection, but it was enlighting persence for me to ponder on about both my own work and the work that inspires me.

Further Reading  | Norio Imai



All artwork © Joseph Calleja | Please do not download, reproduce or share without permission

Studio 73|75|77
77 Mgarr Road Qala Gozo Malta