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Age of Oil

Exploring the people and places of Scotland’s offshore energy industry, this contemporary art exhibition showcased the work of visual artist Sue Jane Taylor who has worked in some of the most remote and challenging environments in Scotland.
Exhibition information


21 July - 5 November 2017


National Museum of Scotland, Exhibition Gallery 4, Level 1, Grand Gallery

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This multimedia exhibition will bring a unique perspective to the relationship between art, environment and industry while revealing an alien way of life on board a North Sea oil platform.

Linking closely to themes introduced in the Energise gallery, this exhibition will consider the future of energy in Scotland and the challenges of removing a structure the size of the Eiffel Tower from the middle of the North Sea from the artist’s perspective.

An Age of Oil publication featuring Sue Jane Taylor's works and diary extracts is available to buy from the Museum shop.

Buy the Age of Oil book 

  • 2-View-from-Market-Street_1500.jpg

    'View from Market Street, Aberdeen Harbour, 2015', mixed media on paper, 1000mm x 700mm © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Ewen Weatherspoon

  • 1500_drillers-phone.jpg

    Driller’s telephone, Used on the Murchison platform, United Kingdom, c.1979

  • 10-Eddie-Campbell_1500.jpg

    'Eddie Campbell, Weldex Cranes, Inverness, 2012', colour conté, 820mm x 580mm © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Fin Macrae

  • 1500_pipeline-pig.jpg

    Pipeline pig. Donated by Canadian Natural Resources International (U.K.) Ltd.

  • 8-The-Brent-Field_1500.jpg

    'The Brent Field, 2016, mixed media on paper', 666mm x 850mm (Collection: Shell UK) © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Ewen Weatherspoon

  • 1500_T.2017.11.2-Murchison-crude-oil-canister.jpg

    Murchison oil, The last crude oil extracted by the Murchison platform, 28 February 2014. United Kingdom, 2014

  • 9-Bird-Woman_1500.jpg

    'Bird woman, University of Aberdeen Research Station, Cromarty, 2007', colour conté, 820mm x 580mm © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Fin Macrae

  • suit1.jpg

    Passenger survival suit. On loan from Survitec Group Limited United Kingdom, 2017

  • Assembly offshore, Moray Firth.jpg

    'Beatrice Works Suite No 7 – Assembly offshore, Moray Firth, 2012', edition 20, colour etching, chine collé and hand watercolour, 420mm x 300mm © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Fin Macrae

  • North Sea diver, Technip Aberdeen.jpg

    'North Sea diver, Technip Aberdeen, 2010', colour conté, 770mm x 570mm collection Fife Cultural Trust (Kirkcaldy Galleries) on behalf of Fife Council) © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Fin Macrae

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About the artist

Sue Jane Taylor has spent over thirty years recording the lives of workers in the North Sea oil and gas industry. Her work extends to cover the offshore renewable energy industry, where she has followed developments from fabrication to installation. Taylor has exhibited, carried out public commissions and held artist-residencies nationally and internationally. These images are a selection of Sue Jane Taylor's work from projects she has undertaken over the last ten years.

Header image: View from Control Tower, North Pier Aberdeen Harbour, 2016, mixed media on paper, 2290mm x 1000mm © Sue Jane Taylor. Photographer: Ewen Weatherspoon

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