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Grizedale Arts.Newsletter

The Sums of Grizedale – end of year, end of era.

The Nuisance of Landscape, Abbot Hall Gallery, Kendal Ends Sat 20th December

Free gallery visit days Monday 15th & Wednesday 17th December 10am – 4pm (save yourself a few quid (£7.50 to be precise))

Grizedale Babylon - Take the director’s tour on Monday 15th at 2pm just so you don’t miss a damn thing. It will be an incoherent insight into the wildly complicated world of Grizedale Arts over the past 15 years. It starts with a burning billboard and ends with an honest shop.

Also check out the Romneys (both the mint cake sculpture and the 18th century high fashion portraits) – a local boy who left and never looked back - well almost never , except to die.

This may well be the only UK showing of this exhibition - anyone out there want an entertaining ready-to-go large scale exhibition?
Visitors comments go from ecstatic to excruciating – it’s sure got range.

National Park Authority Band

Shipping News Still time to post before Christmas, many artsy stocking fillers in our online shop at

Christmas Art Fair and Farmers Market, Saturday 13th December

Coniston Institute, Coniston 11am – 9pm

In the ongoing Turnip Turner conundrum Coniston offers both under one roof, on one floor, on one day. Great food from the Weeds & Vermin restaurant – Great Art for Everyone (goes without saying, it’s in the contract, Ed.) – great knitwear including the launch of the Schwitters Schweater, and the Cancelled Burnley Mechanics Candlesticks, alongside old favourites like the Anti Xmas decorations, Laure Provoust’s Wantee T towels and teapots and the rest of the village-produced multiples.

Local farmers will be selling meats and game, preserves and puddings, and as ever the humble turnip will be holding its end up – ignore it, ‘filzy zing’ (Udo Kier).

Candle-lit evening food and music, it rocks, but gently.

Planning Applications & Appeals (This is going to be guinea-a-minute. Ed.) We have 2 planning capers underway at the moment:

The village Cricket Pavilion fell foul of the specialist design experts on the planning committee. They freely admitted to having no interest in or knowledge of design, and then turned down the scheme on the basis that they “don’t like the look of it”.
Which does suggest some interest in design, although maybe not as we know it.
So it’s off to big school aka Planning Inspectorate with that one.

Our other soon-to-be-rejected application is for a new cold store (for our vast pantry of preserved squirrel) and above it, a Ruskin Madness Window on the mountain-facing side of Lawson Park: Somewhere you can watch the storms roaring up the valley and wonder at the scale of your own monumental insignificance, leading directly into a massive breakdown, demons-on-the-end-of-the-bed scenario – well, it did for Ruskin. (‘I don’t know much about breakdowns but I don’t like the look of this one’, Planning Authority)

Stalled projects

Ah, that’ll be the New Mechanics Children’s Cook Book of recipes from our youth club programme involving different artists and art projects.
It’s a fun read - a bit too fun it seems – the (local) funder has withdrawn their support, taking the fun out of funding (and asked the Parish Council to ensure we don’t print it Ed.). We tried a rewrite but failed to eradicate its endemic innuendo and inappropriate attitudes to plants. Maybe we’ll try another rewrite in the spring. (Doing so in the season of thrusting shoots and moist rigidity of unfurling wands isn’t going to help, Ed.)

In the meantime if anyone wants the PDF just send us an email – it has a recipe for spam sushi , a very not approved way to despatch and skin an eel, plus an unnecessarily cavalier attitude to crayfish.

Taking the fun out of fun-ding (it don’t mean a thing if it ain’t got that ding. Ed).

But putting the fun back into funding is the Arts Council England 3 year plan requirement, a veritable orgy of paper work across the nation, from stationery to stationary. Having filled our office with it, we go in there to roll in it every so often - then come home stinking of paper work. (Dirty director, GO TO YOUR BED, Ed.)

Howgill Honest Shop

Starting in the new year, the winsome An Endless Supply and an as-yet-unnamed product design group will be working with the Howgill Family Centre in West Cumbria to create a shop and series of home products.

So far they have a very large pile of clothes and a lot of toys. (I feel a Hans Bellmer coming on. Ed.)

Confessions of the Imperfect - Van Abbe Museum, Eindhoven, Netherlands

On till 22/02/2015

Recently opened opus curated by Steven ten Thije, Alistair Hudson and including contributions from some of our homies - Ruskin Museum, Lancaster Uni and the Lawson Park collections.

The show bounces from crag to valley in search of the useful trajectory that art has taken in its Zebedee like ‘traverse through modern culture’ (Too old a reference? Ed.).

New Gigs at Grizedale

Following Deputy Dawg Alistair’s departure to Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art many of you have been asking ‘Who’s the new Mr Burns’?
Katrina Black (formerly of the Whitechapel Gallery) will be joining us in the new year to help juggle the chainsaws and kittens before we advertise for 3 new posts in May 2015. For those in search of pastures new, our recruitment will be in the areas of education, marketing/web/social media and land / site management – we look forward to having a greatly expanded team to continue and extend the programme in new and curious ways. Please spread the word.

Naturellement we are also looking for volunteers and interns for 2015, so if anyone feels the urge to come somewhere cold and wet – contact

Oh yeah, happy season of collapse – don’t get flu for New Year (I do, every year without fail. Ed.)

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