Surveying the blank canvas that is 2019 there’s some trepidation. Last year our workload reached almost overwhelming levels with output at the end of 2018 dominating commitments. A year which saw us tied up with the building purchase and flooding in our basement left little opportunity to look ahead. The result? Well let’s say certain aspects of 2019 are somewhat abstract.
A vague outline, some recognisable shapes; it still looks very much like Artizan, but the edges are a little blurred, colours hazy and there’s work to do before the bigger picture will be hanging on the gallery walls.
What we know confidently, is that 2019 will be big. We were inundated with proposals for a diverse range of challenging and inspiring thematic calls put forwards by guest curators and a wealth of talented contemporary artists making enquiries. We’ll be exploring themes of mental health and welcoming national and international names to Torbay, complimenting shows from local talent.
Collaboration with Geopark Ambassador Artists will extend alongside our commitment to the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark. Early plans include an exhibition during the Geopark Festival which we hope might welcome other international sites, but with the commitment shown already from these artists, we’re anticipating this won’t be all we see from them.
Photography will take a headline slot. We met the South West Collective of Photographers in October and saw a big contribution in this medium to our Winter Open. With approaches being made from individual artists, and audiences being equally vocal, it’s apparent there’s appetite here. The UK is still fairly traditional in its recognition (or lack thereof) for the medium with bubbles of excellence where you might expect them, London and Bristol being notable. Witnessing this progressive attitude locally therefore is exciting.
Off the back of 2018 pop-ups on Fleet Walk, we’ll be continuing to think big. There’re some ideas forming, we might have our eyes turned towards friends in Brixham… but who knows!
Plenty of the old Artizan will be remaining, favourites such as Stanza Extravaganza are going nowhere, but the rest, watch this space! Visit art-hub.co.uk/2019 for details.