UHI Shetland - Open the door to your future
Sunday 23 June 2024
 11.4°C   W Moderate Breeze
Ocean Kinetics - The Engineering Experts

Arts / ‘Surreal experience’: Vivian relishes chance to create piece for the Queen of Denmark

She first worked in Hantsholm two years ago

Vivian Ross-Smith’s artwork being presented to the Queen of Denmark.

AN ARTWORK from one of Shetland’s leading visual artists was presented as a gift to the Queen of Denmark earlier this week.

Vivian Ross-Smith, originally from Fair Isle and now living in Lerwick, was recently commissioned by the Hanstholm Harbour Trust to make a piece for royalty.

On Monday an extension to the harbour was officially opened and the artwork was given to Queen Margaret II as part of the celebrations.

“I was honoured to be asked to create this artwork for the Danish Queen,” Vivian said this week. “It has been a surreal experience and wonderful to further strengthen my links with the Hanstholm community.”

Vivian Ross Smith with the finished piece.

Vivian first worked at Hanstholm, a small town of around 2,000 people in the north of Denmark, in 2019 after being invited to stay at the North Atlantic Lighthouse as an artist in residence by the Hanstholm Art Space.

She created an exhibition of fish skin and bronze artworks for display in their gallery, and also ran a series of fish skin preserving workshops for the local community

In June this year she was asked to make an artwork using fish skin from Hanstholm. While she was invited to return to Denmark to create the work, due to Covid-19 restrictions she decided it would be safer to make it in Shetland.

Network, a piece from Vivian’s 2019 Hanstholm exhibition.

“Luckily, during my previous stay in Hanstholm, I visited the harbour and fish markets several times to gather skins to preserve and still had many of these skins in my studio,” she said, “meaning I could use the material that originated from that site in Denmark but could make it from my studio in Shetland and post it out to them.”

Become a supporter of Shetland News


The curator of Hanstholm Art Space, Signe Højmark, said they had been “delighted” to collaborate with Vivian in 2019 and now to receive a “beautiful original piece of arts, with roots in both Shetland and Hanstholm, for the Danish Queen”.

“At the inauguration of the new harbour extension [on Monday], Queen Margaret II was presented to the art piece by the harbour director of the port of Hantsholm, Nils Skeby,” Højmark said.

“He explained the origin of the piece, and the Queen looked with keen interest and delight at the work. Vivian Ross-Smith is part of the Hanstholm Art Space programme at the North Atlantic Lighthouse in Hanstholm, a project that is growing and becoming increasingly part of the local society.”

Earlier this year Vivian created Islands in the Gallery, a series of three performances where she displayed wearable paintings in remote landscapes around Shetland, as part of Shetland Arts’ Refresh Now initiative in response to Covid-19.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

Shetland News is asking its many readers to consider start paying for their dose of the latest local news delivered straight to their PC, tablet or mobile phone.

Journalism comes at a price and because that price is not being paid in today’s rapidly changing media world, most publishers - national and local - struggle financially despite very healthy audience figures.

Most online publishers have started charging for access to their websites, others have chosen a different route. Shetland News currently has  over 600 supporters  who are all making small voluntary financial contributions. All funds go towards covering our cost and improving the service further.

Your contribution will ensure Shetland News can: -

  • Bring you the headlines as they happen;
  • Stay editorially independent;
  • Give a voice to the community;
  • Grow site traffic further;
  • Research and publish more in-depth news, including more Shetland Lives features.

If you appreciate what we do and feel strongly about impartial local journalism, then please become a supporter of Shetland News by either making a single payment or monthly subscription.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.



Subscribe to a selection of different newsletters from Shetland News, varying from breaking news delivered on the minute, to a weekly round-up of the opinion posts. All delivered straight to your inbox.

Daily Briefing Newsletter Weekly Highlights Newsletter Opinion Newsletter Life in Shetland Newsletter

JavaScript Required

We're sorry, but Shetland News isn't fully functional without JavaScript enabled.
Head over to the help page for instructions on how to enable JavaScript on your browser.

Your Privacy

We use cookies on our site to improve your experience.
By using our service, you agree to our Privacy Policy and Cookie Policy.

Browser is out-of-date

Shetland News isn't fully functional with this version of .
Head over to the help page for instructions on updating your browser for more security, improved speed and the best overall experience on this site.

Interested in Notifications?

Get notifications from Shetland News for important and breaking news.
You can unsubscribe at any time.

Become a supporter of Shetland News

We're committed to ensuring everyone has equitable access to impartial, open and quality local journalism that benefits all residents.

By supporting Shetland News, you play a vital role in ensuring we remain a pivotal resource in supporting the community.

Support us from as little as £3 per month – it only takes a minute to sign up. Thank you.