It is Supermarket time of the year again – this year’s moveable feast has taken up temporary residence in a (very) recently vacated former slaughter house in Stockholm’s former meat-packing district. The whole area is called ‘Slakthusområdet’ which translates literally as ‘The slaughter house area’, the swedish lanage can be wonderfully blunt at times. Waiting in the ‘Exhibitor’s and PNP Lounge’ for a guided tour of the fair there is the faint but distinct smell of butcher’s shop.
For the second year I am on the PNP programme – pnp standing for ‘Professional Networking Participants’ rather than drug and sex fuelled ‘Party’n’Play’ reference to be found on gay ‘dating’ sites and apps. It does not seem a year since the last time and I am perhaps a little too conscious that many of the ideas and contacts that I left last year’s fair with remain on my to do list. This year however finds me in a very different place professionally – I am moving in to a good studio and co-building an artists’ collective, and I have just two and a half months remaining of my part-time contract with the council. So even though I need to find some income I am in a great position to focus on taking a major step forward in terms of my practice and engagement with other artists and organisations.
There are 53 artist-led initiatives exhibiting here, and we are ten on the PNP programme. The exhibitors range from long established artists’ associations from the scandinavian countries to recently started collectives from Africa, in addition there are tangible and digital publications as well as loads of performances and talks. As a PNPer we have some extra meetings and presentations.
Despite the glorious spring weather we are experiencing in Sweden right now I am looking forward to spending most of next four days in the familiar but always different wonderful world of artists.