Oh, what a month

The Edinburgh Fringe festival, the mother fucking pinnacle of arts festivals world wide. A glorious consortium of drag, performance art, singing, theatre and those forms of art you don’t quite understand and definitely can’t categorise. Overall its an absolutely incredible month for those visiting, those performing and in my case for those working.

The extent to which the world of the fringe is all encompassing can be summarised by the fact I am writing this blog post as a form of catharsis. An affective love letter to the month in which Edinburgh becomes the most beautifully vibrant, liberal and welcoming city. Admittedly my month was interjected with drunkenness, disgruntled members of the public, more 6am finishes than i would care to mention and at times literal shit. But by god it was good. 

I’ve noted before the extent to which I believe the art world on the whole to be leaning towards elitism, nepotism and exclusivity. That for such a supposed platform of freedom of expression for all, it doesn’t necessary get its voice across to everyone. Due to the continual lack of accessibility for artists and patrons alike. However within this particular set of circumstances, that is the Fringe, my world view has been shifted. What fringe festivals offer, with their very name implying their resonance with the fringes of society, is the opportunity for artists from all backgrounds and varying levels of success to collaborate and perform on the same stages. Whether individuals perform under the big 4 (Gilded Balloon, Under Belly, Assembly and Pleasance), within smaller venues or for the free fringe they are all contributing to the tapestry of events on offer. 

The acts stem from an incredible range of backgrounds. With a significant amount of representation of minorities whether that be ethnicity, religion, sexuality, gender or disability. A phenomenon which could be argued to positively correlate with the diversity of patrons who attend the fringe. 

This inclusive atmosphere could be seen to permeate everywhere. Admittedly working front of house meant that I inevitably met some utter twats. But it also meant I had the pleasure of meeting and working with the most wonderful people from all different walks of life who came together as a family.

I think if I have come away with anything from this month, bar the yearning for next august to come around quickly, its the ideal that the art world should always function in such a way. It should always be inclusive, liberal and welcoming. 

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A year to learn french- une année pour apprendre le français

Je neigh comprond pas je swee Anglays *Please read in a Yorkshire Accent* 

(Je ne comprend pas je suis Anglaise)

A pitiful excuse I whack out whenever an individual who speaks french tries to engage in conversation with me.

Like so many people my endeavours into learning a foreign language never did extend beyond GCSE years. And even then my pitiful attempt at German couldn’t really be classed as an endeavour. As a non-shallont 15 year old me decided another language definitely wouldn’t be necessary in the future, (disclaimer: it is). 

Overall my language skills don’t extend beyond please, thank you, and hello in a few languages, ordering baguettes and quoting the history boys “En Votre pantalons s’il vous plait”. However, now I’m a little older (and slightly wiser) ENOUGH IS ENOUGH.

At this point its not only an aspiration to learn another language, but theres a deadline. Next summer I am embarking upon the first trip to France by myself. Although I’ve been going to France since I can remember with my family, this will be the first time I can’t awkwardly hide behind the menu when food is being ordered. 

I have a timetabled couple of months in mind, hopping around the beautiful country in a series of Volunteering pursuits. There are lots of incredible opportunities to live your best life in French Chateaus, farm houses, artist retreats and even such incredible artistic pilgrimages as Monets House in Giverny. As you are given a bed, food, a cultural exchange and a new family to welcome you in exchange for helping them out with their projects and ambitions. All in all, as an accessible, achievable experience set within a landscape which so inspires me artistically it seemed like a no brainer to sign up.

However, as ever there is a catch. I need to be able to speak passable french. Not fluent, but enough to converse and not butcher the beautiful language with my northern tongue. So here goes, a gal who had previously consigned herself to forever utilising the excuse “I just don’t “get” languages” is going on a linguistic adventure. 

Am I a dreamer, maybe. But more likely Je suis un rêveur.

Wilkommen, Bienvenue, Welcome.

Hello and welcome to you, the delightful individual who has chosen to frequent my blog! A blog, which as the name suggests, is a delve into the cultural sphere we find ourselves in today as I try to unpick, critique, find my place in and delve into the “Art World”.

“How to make it in the Art world” was a title coined from the utter shite, and limited advice, I found through a trawl on google. Where all that came up when I searched for expertise on how to find a hook within the art market, art world and mainstream cultural sphere of modern day society, was brilliant pearls of wisdom such as “visit an art fair”. 

As a young and aspiring artist, feminist, and not yet graduated art historian. I am taking  the freedom to voice my opinions online, to create this blog. A veritable mismatch of;

  • reviews
  • lil essays
  • critiques 
  • & my art work 

As I aim to explore this so called “Art world”. An epitomised ideal for every young and aspiring artist. An image which brings to mind; a large studio in Camden, mingling with the great artist of today and most importantly having your art recognised within your lifetime.

However, as ever within all spheres of society mother-fucking elitism, sexism and a lack of diversity are always lurking around the corner. So just how easy is it to take a step in the right direction, and just how accessible is this microcosm?

I’ll be honest, at this point I have very little clue. But hey, this what this virtual space is for! A chance  to voice my opinions, experiences and involve myself within the most accessible route into publishing my artworks- the internet.

So please stick around, contribute, question and criticise whatever this mismatched train of thought is. And who knows, I may have a fucking epiphany and I’ll be on the walls of the Royal Academy in no time.

Livi x