Fruitmarket is 50

The Fruitmarket is a space lit by the best of energies: formally brave, deeply communal, ever inventive and ever inspiring.

Its art is always exciting and uncannily timely, its exhibitions always ahead of their time. Its people are friendly, warm and astute. This makes it a rare thinking space and breathing space. Every time I go there I come out opened, renewed – massively happy.


Ali Smith January 2024


Fruitmarket is fifty. Or we will be in August, so we’re celebrating all year. Fifty years of helping art find an audience, for free. Fifty years of ambitious, inspiring, international, ground-breaking exhibitions and innovative, accessible, welcoming engagement activities. Fifty years of people coming together to learn about the world through art and conversation.

The history of Fruitmarket exhibitions is laid out in posters in the café in a joyous celebration of the past in the present. There are some impressive names (Jean-Michel Basquiat, Marina Abramović, Louise Bourgeois, Phyllida Barlow…) but as important as the names, I think, is the kind of art Fruitmarket has always stood for: generous, generative art that reveals what it can do as much as what it might mean. Sarah Wood calls it ‘the thinking space that art can give’.

This year, we are proud to welcome several wonderful artists to clear a space for us all to think in. First up is Martin Boyce who first showed with us in 1999 as part of ‘Visions for the Future’, a celebration of promising young artists working in Scotland. Since then, Martin’s career has gone from strength to strength (he won the Turner Prize in 2011). He still lives and works in Glasgow, proof that artists can develop and sustain an international career from Scotland.

Fruitmarket is part of Martin’s career and cultural life, as it is part of the cultural lives of all our visitors. We are proud to have played our part in developing Scotland’s contemporary cultural identity, and are excited for the future.

We’re doing a lot this year. You’ll find all the details on our website and by following us on our social media. Please come along, help us celebrate and join in.

Fiona Bradley, Director

© 2024 Fruitmarket

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