Recently re-branded North Lands Creative has successfully completed a re-structuring and held an international conference ahead of an exciting new programme of activities. Located in the delightful village of Lybster, Caithness the organisation is planning a colourful, vibrant and engaging programme of workshops, classes and exhibitions on the Lybster campus, complimented by associated events that include bite-size tours, studio talks, curator/ artist in conversation events, workshops and schools visits.
A large group of artists, academics and individuals involved in the wider creative industries descended upon the recently re-branded North Lands Creative Campus over 15th/16th July eager to embrace the wealth of knowledge and experience of architectural glass and other topics from conference speakers including renowned architect Robin Webster OBE and artists Dr Cate Watkinson, Karlyn Sutherland, Andrea Spencer, Alan Horsley and Annie Cattrell.
The conference was chaired by Michael Endo, artist and curator at Bullesye Projects. He said: “ I truly enjoyed chairing the conference. It was a great experience to meet everyone. North Lands is quite special, and for many artists attending the North Lands conference is a fantastic opportunity to meet their role models.”
The event also serves as a great opportunity to network with fellow artists to share knowledge and skills. This year was no different as the delegates were treated to dinner at The River Bothy, Berriedale on the evening prior to the conference along with a trip to unique Byre Gallery in Latheron featuring the work of Karlyn Sutherland, Silvia Levenson, Emily Nachison and Michael Rogers.
Michael Rogers, a new North Lands Creative board member, said: “I feel fully engaged when visiting North Lands Creative and always leave inspired, brimming with new ideas. It was pure joy to meet old acquaintances and to make new friends. Especially appreciated was the intimacy of the conference, the variety of lectures and events conducive to the exchange of knowledge, and the time between for discussions with other participants. When I think of the community that gathered there the word ‘kindred’ comes to mind. One cannot help but feel among kindred spirits while in Lybster. My deep appreciation to the North Lands Creative administrators and Staff for all their efforts to make the conference such a dynamic event! Being new to the NLC Board I feel so fortunate to be a part of such an amazing and forward thinking organization. I’m excited about what the future will bring!”
Sunday evening also saw the opening of the new North Lands Creative retail and gallery space with a fascinating conversation event between featured artist Annie Cattrell and Head of Arts at National Glass Centre Julia Stephenson. Conference delegates were also treated to a reception and whisky tasting by Thurso-based Wolfburn Distillery in addition to a networking and dinner event and bonfire down at Waterlines which is located at the world famous Lybster Harbour.
On the Gallery opening North Lands Creative General Manager Lorna MacMillan said: “The North Lands Creative Shop & Gallery is a welcome addition to the organisation’s portfolio. We are delighted to be able to showcase the creative talent of local artists as well as recent graduates from Scottish Universities. We look forward to sharing the magic that is North Lands Creative with visitors in the future”
Speaking on the potential and future of North Lands Creative, Karen Phillips, Director said:
“For 2018/ 19, North Lands Creative is delighted to work with an exciting line-up of Scottish, UK and international artists and curators on our workshop and class programme, exhibitions, and many newvisitors and communities via our talks, events and education programmes. Also, of strategic importance to us, is expanding our international relevance through partnerships and in so doing, offering supports for artists to work and network abroad: creating opportunities for inward and outward cultural exchange. We’ve renewed our vision An international centre dedicated to the study and development of glass as an art form, developed a strategy for the next three years in service of artists and providing the highest standards for professional practice in glass and also, creating access in the creative industries for new audiences. These commitments will form the bedrock of our new strategy”. The highly visible and accessible programme will challenge and inspire both existing and new audiences to experience glass in original ways and will be complimented by a full programme of participatory events such as tours, talks and in conversation events.”
About North Lands Creative
North Lands Creative is a unique studio organisation and gallery in Lybster, Caithness. The focus is on contemporary glass and they have a national importance in developing glass in the UK. Through the Alastair Pilkington Studio and gallery, North Lands Creative facilitates and supports professional artists to make new art work. It also offers a highly visible and accessible programme of talks, events and education activities around the studio and gallery that engages visitors with artists and art-making. http://northlandscreative.co.uk/
Image: An International Crowd (From L-R): Alistair Murray NLC Chair (Scotland), Irena Czepcova (Czech Republic), Elina Salonen (Finland), Michael Rogers (USA), Nadania Idriss (Germany) and Michael Endo (USA)