Arts and Crafts in Argyll is vibrant and diverse, with a wide range of art galleries, visitor centres with exhibitions and shops selling everything from hand fired pottery to crafts, jewellery and wonderful art work. Whichever direction you choose to go when setting out from Loch Melfort, you are sure to find somewhere to stop along the way to enjoy some Arts and Crafts.
If you are planning on taking a day trip to Mull, be sure to stop at Calgary Art in Nature. Situated near the beautiful Calgary Beach, this part indoor/part outdoor gallery is set in a stunning location – providing a spectular setting to appreciate the beauty of art and the scenery. A diverse selection of artworks including oil paintings, ceramics, sculptures, woodwork and watercolours are on display. The Art in Nature walks aims to enhance awareness of the environment by placing sculptures around the Calgary woodland, with viewing platforms to look out from. The wood also holds plenty of treasures for children to enjoy and discover, with a zip wire and a willow tunnel to explore. Back at Calgary there is workshop where local artists can meet and create art together, share ideas and thoughts, and develop their skills. The studio is mainly aimed at carving, giving a creative environment for artists to work in.
Another island well worth visiting is the Isle of Luing. Just a short ferry ride from the Island of Seil, which is connected to the mainland by the Clach Bridge, the journey from Seil to Luing takes less than five minutes. On Luing is the Atlantic Islands Centre, a community hub, which features two very informative exhibitions. One focuses on the unique local history of Luing, with the other looking at the wider Argyll history. The Isle of Luing was once quarried for slate, and this long rich history is reflected in the exhibition by Slate Mosaic artist Dugald MacInnes. It is hard to find a more appropriate opening for such an exhibition, displaying slate from disused quarries, given that Luing is one of the main features in the exhibition. A stop at the Atlantic Islands Centre is a must, to learn about both the history of the Isle of Luing, and see its history displayed in beautiful art work.
There are numerous Arts and Crafts places to stop at in the Argyll area, with Loch Melfort perfectly situated for discovering them. One place well worth a visit is Argyll Pottery, situated just outside Oban. Established in 1988, this is a wonderful little pottery shop. All of their products are produced on site, with a full range of domestic ware ceramics hand thrown on the wheel. Most of their thrown ceramics are made from stoneware clay, but some of the more contemporary pieces are produced from porcelain. If you are lucky enough, you might visit on a day when you can watch the potters at work, or even packing or unpacking the kiln.