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Grizedale Arts.Newsletter

Son of Grizedale #4 - December 2008

Sum of Grizedale
Born December 2008
The Anger Management Issue
(How many things can you be angry about at once? About 17.
Sin of Grizedale will be operating a one in, one out policy to achieve this core organisational and strategic mission.
So in line with this new dictum and the good will season approaching, we have re-edited this newsletter for the 8th time and, gritting our teeth, endeavour to look forward and backward with a positive mentalist attitude.
Frieze Fun
Frieze Art Fair was the usual enjoyable opportunity to meet up with other provincial curators who live too far away from us to ever visit, but have the same problems. Being as they are also at Frieze, we clearly share the same aspirations, i.e. to be fashionable and to feel slightly superior – however briefly - as we walk among all the commercial galleries having to staff market stalls. There is no way that this looks classy.
Especially when readymade components of Lawson Park’s Hen House were doing great trade at art not garden centre prices.
£200 plastic garden feature + slight tilt at Frieze = £7,000 (x 2)
Voguely Impressed
Grizedale is in Vogue again, which doesn’t add up as we thought it wasn’t (see below). But actually it is in Vogue in their December issue hot list of secret things you didn’t know were there but were and are cool, but won’t be for long if everyone gets to know about them. I can’t think of an equation for this one so have passed it on to MIT, although we’re not hopeful they can work this one out either.
Vogue + vogue + Vogue  = Free your arse and your mind will follow
The Ecstacy & the Drogerie
Grizedale is offering the free content in the GSK Season at the old Museum Of Mankind/new Royal Academy venue.
If you are checking out of Saville Row Police Station, there are some very badly protected video projectors lying around and a few art students pretending to be security guards at the venue.
Instead of focusing on the ethics of art with drugs dealer funding,  critics should focus on the curatorial premise of Molten States, allegedly a conversation between Olaf Nicolai and someone else about theatre and the like. The lightning rod for this concept is Olaf’s robotically animated spotlight in a darkened room of its own entitled Samani: Some Proposals to Answer Important Questions.
At the press view we were briefed that this work operates in the territory somewhere between surveillance spotlight and pole dancer. You know that old territory.
“There!” said Tony Hancock, “There is the meaning!”
Spotlight + Pole Dancer + Space between = uncredible curatorial stance
Talking of sums, Martin Creed’s band is playing at the RA too.
The Whole World + The Work + Dodgy art band that only Matthew Collings likes but he would wouldn’t he = The Whole World, still.
Elsewhere in the hallow(een)ed halls of the Royal Academy between Georgina Starr smashing statues and Rene Pollesch’s befrocked and shouting German girls there was an overabundance of multiple screen video work. This has led us to be concerned that the human race is set to evolve three eyes in order to adjust to the requirement to see more than one image at a time. You read it here first: in the not too distant future mankind will have evolved a faceful of googly eyes purely to look at all that video art of the 21st century.
That’s if we haven’t died of boredom first.
Multiple Screen Video Art + Natural Selection  = Fly’s head x Marty Feldman 
ToadballTV - It’s a ball of toads
For those of you who can’t make it to the Royal Academy to see our room full of stuff, or you’re not checking in with your nearby tailor to have your masters let out to accommodate your ever-expanding wealth, you can see this all online at 
The webstravaganza includes the new commission by the World’s Friendliest Black Artist  (his words, the Ed.) William Pope L in which he connects convenience stores around the world in an alt-modern version of that 70’s Coke ad.
‘He’s got the whole world in his hands’
That’s how we read it anyway.
Our 2009 Mission Statement
Despite our best made plans to simplify and clarify what Grizedale is we are now planning a project for 2009/10 that can be summarised by the following equation:
Grizedale = Coniston Institute + [local food production x Liam Gillick] + John Ruskin ÷ (Nanling x Toge) + Lawson Park Farm ÷ √Guestroom + ∑ potatoes + The National Trust - the cosine of the number you first thought of
Stocking Fillers Galore
No not a 007 temptress from Quantum of Solace
but a plug for our online shop at
A giant button + a Penguin Fox + dried mushrooms - a tangerine = a stocking the shape of which will scare your children and elderly relatives
Give us a Present
Talking of money, boy do we need some. So if you fancy  it, Paypal us some virtually on and we will name a member of next year’s Lawson Park poultry in your honour. Oh, and if you do remember to give your name and address we can do that Gift Aid tax-y thing too.
Unfurnished building + no money left = send us a tenner and we’ll buy a chair or two so at least you’ll have a chair to sit on when you visit
The building costs of our new home Lawson Park spiral and the funding equally but in the opposite direction. There’s money out there but we seem to have (brilliantly) established a programme that doesn’t appeal to any funders, being overly complex and purposeful.
Meanwhile simplistic and purposeless programmes prosper all around.
Locally, the Tourist Board has become a
commissioner of the arts, an interesting development in the trajectory of art as a tool for regeneration. The notion is to create a cultural landscape to attract visitors. Amazingly, artists are happy to go along with this, which supports our notion that the art world is entirely without moral standards.
What weird culture this will produce, but maybe no one will notice. Maybe the Greeks built the
Parthenon as “destination architecture”?
(Actually, Wikipedia says they did, the Ed.)
£1.2 million = 10 artworks + marketing = 10,000 tourists = 20,000 bednights @ £40 = £800,000 – costs = £400,000 divided by 500 Lake District B&Bs = £800 = a winter weekend holiday for a B&B owner in Spain
Centre for Radical Thatching?
The struggle continues to pluck enough bracken  off the hills to thatch the Lawson Park porch. The Reactor collective lent a hand in between cool ubernerd geodesic dome experiments which can be seen online at
Cultural theorists = a small pile of broken sticks
Now That’s What I Call
Straight to Video
Those nice people at are doing a mini Grizedale retrospective of some, of that video work we’ve made over the years, digging up those hidden gems , flatumentaries and family classics such as the Juneaus’ “Like Waking from a Dream of Incest Feeling Ruined Forever” Coming to a computer screen near you until Dec. 31st.
Pile of old videos tapes + cool packaging = Christmas hit
Dates for your crisp
new 2009 diary
8th Jan. Harold Offeh’s Urbania collective run a Soup Night as part of their Toadball contribution. 7.00 - 11.00pm, Academy Room, 6 Burlington Gardens, London W1. Bring a spoon.
Hot on their heels, 15th Jan. Guestroom are launching their new publication The Reader, from 7.00 - 10.00pm, same location as above.
Guestroom are also working on the new library at Lawson Park. The dream is to create an archive, an artist & community resource and a visual hit. We are all excited and Esmee Fairbairn have given us a few tenners so the rest should be easy. Other commissions include Adam Chodzko doing us a chair, Peter Hodgson’s animal wars wall paper, Laura Davis’ Chinese country modernism fabric, Pablo Bronstein’s Hen House/pottery. If you’ve got a great idea give us a call, anyone for murals? (Anyone for chairs? The deputy Ed.)
Tenners = artists + high expectations = a new vision for how a tiny remote rural arts organisation can improve the whole world

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