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Grizedale Arts.Newsletter

Son of Grizedale #1 - February 2008

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES, twenty four little old hours Share our joy as Lawson Park gets worse before it gets better - watch the gripping progress (or not) online on our new building webcam on The 1.2 million refurbishment will create 4 artists' live/work units at the site, and includes some impressive new green technologies such as a ground source heat pump that's drilled 70m (yep, 70m x 7 bore holes) into the rock. And some chickens eventually. I think they are planning some sort of nuclear fusion stuff in their bespoke Pablo Bronstein Hen House.

NEW MONEY versus OLD MONEY Mostly depressing news on funding for the arts as the Olympics start to bite, combined with the demise of Northern Rock - a major funder for all in the North - it looks like standstill time, when things get tight projects like Grizedale maybe seem a bit superfluous from an urban perspective.

FARMYARD RADIO Starts Friday 1st Feb 2008 4pm -5pm - Farmyard Radio (a derivation of zoo radio) will soon be with you direct from the heart of Grizedale Arts site office aka The Black Moss. Live broadcast on from the end of the day at the end of the week - a relaxed chat with whoever is on site and about whatever has been happening - the stress of failure, the elation of success, the politics, economics and emotional response to being in the arts from practitioners to facilitators, farmers to funders. It's the Archers meets Brass Eye round at Yentob's.

If you want a taste of Earl Grizedale's mikestyle for Egremont FM listen in at or for local and artist content at under audio archive.

QUITE RIGHT TOO Grizedale favourites Karen Guthrie & Nina Pope just won the first Northern Art Prize, with work produced as part of our '7 Samurai' residency in Japan and the brilliant Bataville: We are not afraid of the future , a road movie with old people (many from Maryport in Cumbria).

Grizedale pedigrees juneau/projects have just got the June Art Now gig at Tate Britain and will be building a communal moss garden in the sculpture court.

A GREASY POLE IS BORN Our - mainly Alistair’s - long involvement with the Creative Egremont public art programme in West Cumbria culminated in the opening of Jeremy Deller & Alan Kane's reinstatement of the town's historic Greasy Pole, as a carbon fibre sculpture on the Market Square now being hailed as the thinnest public art sculpture in West Cumbria. Climb at your own risk.

The press frenzy included an interview on Radio 4's Front Row which in theory sounds high falutin stuff but if you look at the reality of our B&B in St Bees it tells a slightly different story. Go for more pictures and a bit of post pole banter with A & J.

EGREMONT’S FOLK FLOAT See what we collected on this mobile-folk-museum-in-a-milk-float by public works at

BLOG HIGHLIGHTS "We finally handed Lawson Park to the builders....It really brought a lot of memories back to me of people and dinners: Colin Lowe and Roddy Thomson fighting and crying; Emily Wardill’s black dinner; Juneau/projects burning a radio over a camp fire and the radio just kept going and going; Mark Wallinger repeatedly talking over a particularly boring dinner guest who kept mentioning Andy Goldsworthy"

Add your good and bad memories of Lawson Park to the list at

AGRIFASHIONISTA.TV Agrifash progresses towards full meltdown -March 13th - 20th , live from Rochelle School in that place London. The past week being dominated by Jen Lui and her filmic demands, blazing face-off screamers I am told, cant wait to see the footage, audio level should be ok for a change.

The blog is starting to fill up but it’s still making little sense. A complete re-jig is underway but in the meantime there is some good stuff in there, just trawl on through on

ALISTAIR ON: Art FreebiesI got given a 20th anniversary cloth art bag to add to my collection of biennial cloth art bags. This one is special though as it’s image/logo has a convoluted reference to the whole ‘this is not a plastic bag’ vs ‘plastic bag free village’ inter bag dialogue. Dave from Cornerhouse uses his as shoe bags when travelling, which makes my whole trip to Manchester sort of worthwhile.

This week’s top 10 uses for cloth art bags:

1. shoe bag (NEW ENTRY)

2. nose bag for donkeys/Virgin train trips (18)

3. filling with stones and hitting people who say the word ‘unpack’ at conferences (4)

4. filling with stones and hitting people who say the word ‘intervention’ (8)

5. showing off that you have been abroad to see an art exhibition (2)

6. putting over your dirty Wellington boots when you need to go in the house (26)

7. robbing the Post Office, if it’s open (71)

8. taking the piss out of the Klu Klux Klan (17)

9. carrying your severed arm after the above (16)

10. all of the above (984)

WHO'S AROUND? Former farmer and Coniston milkman David Johnson teaches us the ancient topiary of the countryside - hedgelaying. From 1pm - 4pm on Feb. 11th David will be with us at Lawson Park, helping thrash our wild 6 year old hedgerow into submission (workshop participants welcome - just get in touch).I am a bit scared of doing this, our nurtured and cherished hedge will be cut down to regrow more thickly and deer, dog and mountain bike proof than before.

At 4pm David will join us on Farmyard Radio for a local resident’s assessment of the arts programme and its impact in Coniston as well as a critical analysis of the day’s work.

Artists joining us on a research trip to China in the spring will be at Lawson Park on the weekend of Feb 2nd. We'll be testing their metal by getting them hedge planting and staying overnight at deepest remotest Parkamoor. Bryan and Laura Davies, Maria Benjamin, Ruth Hoflich, Jay Yung and Harold Offeh are our attempt to represent the face of multi-multicultural Britain in the heart of the world new super empire, although Harold is skiving off to do an INIVA studio project. If I remember studios rightly they're a lot colder than Parkamoor.

Bryan and Laura will be filming the event for their project ‘The Wonderful North’ and the tree planting day will launch Grizedale’s Tongue in Carbon Offset Cheek programme.

Sutherland Hussey Architects will lead the first site meeting here at LP on Feb 1st. Hear about it on Farmyard Radio later that day - fantastical insights into the world of the architect.

Grizedale's bee buddy David Walmsley has just been medicating our 4 hives with an organic anti-varroa treatment based on oxalic acid for the safe guarding of our valley-specific British black

Bryan & Laura Davies and their massive mobile home just called by to report on things Northern like the Greasy Pole and other good things in and around Egremont, see what they thought on their The Wonderful North road trip blog.

Kathrin Bohm of public works / myvillages has been up filming for her project, getting rare footage of Ambleside folk art star Peter Hodgson (whose painted mugs - made by our very own Adam Sutherland - featured in the Sunday Telegraph magazine a few weeks ago) working in his studio. Further footage of interaction with the public at the Honesty Stall and a vox pop assessment of value of the products.

Yes and Supermundane graphics/design professionals spent a few days on signage development, flags and shields seem to be the order of the day so far. /

MORE ARCHITECTS ARE AROUND Egremont Castle’s ‘performance structure’ project hosted the selected architect, Jean Gilles Decousterd and hisengineering team on their first site visit as they ponder the structural problems with the installation of a giant limpid donut.

NEW THINGS ONLINE Web guru Dorian Moore continues to wrestle the Grizedale beast into the shape of a website, so don't be a stranger now.
PRINT IF YOU MUST a printable PDF of this is available on our website, for those who need something to read on the bus. We don't have those up here so wouldn't know.

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