PRESS RELEASE: Looking In - Looking Out Lecture (One Down, Two To Go)

19th April 2012



Don’t miss the next Spring Fling ‘Looking In – Looking Out’ lectures on the link between creativity and location

Come and hear from an outstanding selection of artists and guest speakers in the last two events in unique series

Last night, a special series of events featuring talks by Spring Fling artists and special guests got underway at the Rutherford McCowan Building on the University of Glasgow’s Dumfries campus.

Following the success of last year’s ‘Art of Place’ lectures, Spring Fling - Dumfries and Galloway’s annual art and craft open studios festival - has teamed up again with the university’s Solway Centre for Environment and Culture to present ‘Looking In – Looking Out’. The three-part series of lectures celebrates the work of artists and art professionals from the region and beyond, and explores the link between creative inspiration and location, focusing on the themes of ‘Memory’, ‘Land’ and ‘Sustainability’.

The series kicked off last night with ‘Memory’, which looked at Dumfries and Galloway’s rich artistic legacy and the inspiration or influence artists living and working in the region today take from their forerunners from the past. Spring Fling artists jeweller Natalie Vardey, installation artist Will Levi-Marshall, painter Patti Lean and sculptor Elizabeth Waugh - who has worked with Henry Moore - were joined by guest speakers Dr Maggi Toner Edgar, a designer and writer from Cumbria, and Glasgow-based artist Stina Wirfelt for the entertaining evening event.

Spring Fling manager Leah Black said: “It was a really great night; we had a really

good turn-out, the Pecha Kucha format of the artists talking showing 20 images and talking for 20 seconds per image, followed by a question and answer session worked really well, and it was an entertaining and inspirational event.

But if you missed last night’s stimulating introduction to ‘Looking In – Looking Out’, don’t be too disappointed - there are still two more in the series to enjoy.

The second lecture, ‘Land’ takes place on Wednesday 25 April and focuses on how the landscape plays an integral part of the artistic process. The Spring Fling speakers who’ll talk on how the land provides a starting point for creating artwork are artists Angela Lawrence, Ross Fulton, Jeremy Carlisle and Silvana McLean. Guest speakers will be Dr Paul Scott, Artist and Lecturer at Oslo National Academy of the Arts, and Dr Jan Hogarth of Wide Open, Dumfries and Galloway.

And the third in the series, ‘Sustainability’, on Wednesday 2 May looks at sustainable working and the importance of building links outwith the region. Textile designer Morag Macpherson, visual artist Hope London, Harry Potter book covers illustrator Clare Melinsky and glass artist (and Saatchi Gallery exhibitor) Amanda Simmons will be the Spring Fling artist speakers. The guest speakers are Emma Walker of Edinburgh-based CraftScotland, Hannah Stewart of Freerange Artists in Cumbria and artist Justin Carter from Glasgow School of Art

The events have a Pecha Kucha 20 x 20 format (with each of the speakers showing 20 images and speaking for 20 seconds on each) followed by a question and answer session. Dr Valentina Bold of The University of Glasgow’s Dumfries Campus will lead the speakers.

Dr Bold, Director of the University's Solway Centre for Environment and Culture, said: “Looking In – Looking Out’ provides a rare opportunity to hear directly from a wonderfully talented group of local artists and makers as well as some exceptional guests from the wider world of arts. It’s a chance to hear their personal perspective on their work and what inspires their creativity.”

Tickets cost only £2.50 per lecture, and the events are from 6pm to 7.30pm in the University of Glasgow’s Dumfries campus at the Rutherford McCowan Building on Bankhead Road. Tickets for the lectures can be booked in three ways - by contacting Phillipa McNeill of the University of Glasgow on 01387 702 131 or, through the Spring Fling webshop at www.spring-fling/shop or Spring Fling’s Eventbrite page:

Spring Fling Chair Hazel Campbell said: “We hope as many people as possible will join us for the next two events in our ‘Looking In – Looking Out’ lecture series. And of course, we hope as many people as possible will come along to enjoy Spring Fling itself on 2nd to 5th June. This year we’re celebrating Spring Fling’s 10th birthday so we’re aiming for it to be our best yet. It’s being extended to four days and the packed programme features the core open studios trail, a magical mystery tour, bike rides and guided walks, a ceilidh and hog roast, and a wine tasting event. Some of the other great things going on are a young artists’ mentoring programme and an amazing art installation featuring a traditional Galloway cottage wrapped in fabric.”

Spring Fling is a Community Interest Company. The core event is funded by Dumfries and Galloway Council. The Springboard Project, which the ‘Looking In – Looking Out’ lecture series is part of, is funded by The Dumfries and Galloway LEADER Programme and The Holywood Trust. And the public art project is funded by Creative Scotland.


Notes to Editors

• A preview of Spring Fling 2012 and the outstanding talent of its 76 artists, the event will showcase can be seen at the Taster Exhibition at Stranraer Museum from 21 April to 19 May.

• Running alongside the Taster - to commemorate Spring Fling’s 10th birthday - is a Retrospective Exhibition celebrating the success of the festival and the number of visitors who have supported it through the past decade. The Retrospective features a newly commissioned film by Picto Productions which conveys the elements key to the event’s popularity – the region’s great richness of artistic and creative talent combined with its stunning scenery. Visitors are invited to decorate a ‘Memory Wall’ by noting their memories on paper people. Artists and makers who have participated in previous Spring Flings have also submitted pieces of work made specifically for the Retrospective.

• A total of 76 artists, makers and designers are taking part in this year’s festival. The diverse range of outstanding works visitors will see in their studios during Spring Fling 2012 spans painting and photography, jewellery and textiles, glass, ceramics and furniture.

• Spring Fling 2012’s attractive brochure, with lively cover artwork by illustrator Lesley Barnes, is available in a first for Spring Fling - its new Smartphone app. Available on iPhone and Android platforms, this has been created to help visitors navigate studios, route-plan their event days out based on studio locations or artists’ disciplines, as well as access drop-down data on artists. It also enables searches for local attractions recommended by Spring Fling artists and signing up as a Friend of Spring Fling. The app – the full version of which will be available to download in April - has also been designed as a year-round guide to the hottest artists, makers and designers connected to Spring Fling and it will display Spring Fling Twitter and Facebook feeds as well as those of its artists

• For full details of the programme and the artists, makers and designers taking part, see the website at


Media information

• For enquiries, interviews etc. contact Matthew Shelley on 07786 704299 or Ellen Drummond Ferroni on 07801 820757

• A backgrounder with additional details on Spring Fling accompanies this release.

• Free-to-use images are available from the Spring Fling website.