After what felt like an incredibly busy few months its been nice to have a few weeks kicking back with friends, family and loved ones. Usually the end of a year is a good time to take stock, reflect on the past year and share a few highlights. This got me thinking about what goals I'd set for myself at the start of 2016 and how close I came to achieving them or not as the case might be but that's ok. I'm just glad to keep on keeping on.
So what did 2016 bring? Well I don't think I made it to more shows or managed to document as much of the rich cultural offering as I'd hoped. Its hard to think about taking photos and visiting shows when you're sitting in a flat that doesn't have walls or floors. Thankfully that aspect of things is almost done, the end really is in sight now which should free up a bit more brain energy for writing and engaging with whats going on. The head of steam I built up for my own creative practice hit a stale mate, ideas have been written down and formulated and should be put into practice in the coming months.
I did manage to connect with some new faces and made some really great friendships with Laura McGlinchey, Kelly Cairns, Katie Watson and Charlotte Johnston becoming some of my favourite artists of 2016. Big projects also seemed to be the thing for 2016 with the incredible Look Again Festival smashing the doors open to public art which was followed by great projects like the Painted Doors and the Release The Pressure festival. Without a doubt the hardest working artist of 2016 award goes to Katie Guthrie who's enthusiasm and passion is boundless!
And of course there's a ton more I could mention but its all there on the blog, just scroll though and click the older posts button, there's about 8 years worth for you. But going forward what does 2017 bring? NUART Festival will be hitting in April bringing large scale public murals to some select walls around the city centre, Look Again will be returning and looking to take things up a notch again and the Painted Doors will be looking to build on the success of last years efforts. There will no doubt be a ton of other festivals and events which ill do my best to check out when they hit. A big part of the challenge for myself in covering stuff is finding enough hours in the day and thankfully a change in the day job has freed up an extra day every week. So ill be doing a bit of voluntary work with Peacock Visual Arts to help knock their new space in shape, my flat rebuild experience should help and ill also be reporting from The Anatomy Rooms a couple of times a month about all their going ons. Throw in some trips to Dundee, Glasgow and further afield and there you have it.
A quick jaunt to London has got me excited for all the public art coming up this year and I'm really looking forward to getting out there and meeting everyone who's getting radical in 2017! Here's to a happy, healthy and creative year!