A new blog post already!  I wanted to tell you about something else that is going on that I’m rather excited about.

I have a friend called Colette from 104 Duke Street Studios in Liverpool. We meet up often and we talk about art and put the world to rights and in the process we get excited about art, we motivate each other to do things (we run the Liverpool Critique Group together) and we do admittedly spend time complaining about artists who want to take opportunities but don’t want to make opportunities.  The main conclusion that comes from our little meetings is that we don’t want to do things on our own, we know there are other people out there who also want to make exciting art things happen in Liverpool and who will put the work in.  We want to work with these people.

So we had this idea to get people together.  It started with the suggestion that we should have some kind of Liverpool Studio Groups consortium, but I know that there are some great doers in Liverpool who might not belong to a studio group and there are some organisations and collectives that make great things happen that are not studio groups.  We want to give everyone the opportunity to be part of this.

There have been attempts to set up art consortia in Liverpool in the past and some of them still exist.  What might make this one different is that it is not just about networking, it’s about being active and it will not result in an umbrella organisation being formed, instead, Colette and I will try to take a leadership role but we don’t want to control it.  We don’t want to make Liverpool’s wonderful independent art organisations more formal, we just want to elevate them, as they are.

So I spoke with Art in Liverpool who said they would support us and Colette had an idea about making a website that showcases all the Liverpool Studio Groups in one place and we met with The Well Space to try to get them in on it and they said we can use them as a venue.  So now we’re having a meeting.  The invitation is below.  It went on the Art in Liverpool website yesterday and I’ve already had a load of responses, many from people I don’t recognise.  It made me laugh because the title is ‘Invitation to Make Something Happen’ and everyone is emailing saying they want to attend ‘Make Something Happen’.  It was meant to be an invitation to make something happen, not to attend an event called ‘Make Something Happen’, but I quite like it that it’s been read that way.  At least the event has a name by default now.

If it does nothing else, the consortium will provide a platform for the doers to meet each other, inspire each other and make arrangements to do more, for the studio groups to have a more joined up approach, for people to share information, make friends and connections and feel like there is something bigger behind them, supporting them.  It might help to redress the balance, when some organisations get all the publicity and others who are equally doing amazing things, do not.

At best the consortium will convince the doers to make something more planned and joined up happen during the Biennial, or on Light Night, or at any other time of the year.  It might convince someone to try out something they have always wanted to do but never felt confident or motivated enough. It could result in a publication that comes out at various times in the year and maybe collectives or individuals will get together and apply for funding for projects.  Someone might facilitate one joined up project that happens during Biennial time and links all the independent organisations together.

In a leadership role, the themes I am interested in pursuing are to do with showcasing quality art, making art happenings that are original and progressive yet entertaining, offering both complex and non complex viewpoints and even evoking a sense of wonder, as well as engaging the public, enticing  them into our world and showing them how much they can enjoy art.



ATTENTION active artists, studio groups, collectives, underground, overground, independent makers of artistic happenings in Liverpool!

We have a cunning plan that has something to do with getting the doers together, plotting, sharing and forming an alliance, so that we become stronger in partnership, but not structured in a way that stifles our informal, individual approaches. This is just about supporting one another, telling the world about what we’ve got and maybe even making some exciting things happen.

There is fantastic art being made, shown and performed in Liverpool. We just want to tie a big bow around what is already there, give an extra kick to what’s nearly there and then make a song and dance about it all.

Join us to start the discussion

On –  Tuesday 27th October, 6pm
At – The Well Space 2 Roscoe Street, Liverpool, L1 2SX    https://www.facebook.com/TheWellSpaceLiverpool1

Please tell us if you are coming as we want an idea of numbers, or if you are interested but can’t make this meeting, email us anyway. Reply to [email protected]

From Josie and Colette (but it doesn’t matter who we are)


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Over the last few weeks I’ve been a bit apprehensive about going back to China but now, in the last couple of days, I’ve suddenly become incredibly excited.  I’m not sure what changed my mood but it probably helped that I got my visa sorted (it was getting on for £100 this time and only about £60 last time) and yesterday I had a full day of admin which get me almost up to date with a load of stuff I’ve been meaning to do for ages.  I’ve realised that if I have full days dedicated to admin or painting I get a lot more done than if I have days with all sorts of bits of stuff going on.  Also when I book meetings they need to not be at the beginning of the day and there needs to be a cut off point or they just go on forever.  I’ve also been setting alarms to help me remember to do things and that helps a lot.

So I thought I had emailed CEAC ages ago to ask about getting my work back from Iceland and also to tell them I am definitely coming to Xiamen but they hadn’t replied and I wasn’t sure why, but yesterday I realised the email was still in my drafts box!  I emailed Ineke and she replied straight away.  That put my mind at rest.  I also emailed Yuping who runs the Nothing Gallery for Zigi Gudmundsson and I asked her if I could show some work.  She replied straight away also and we agreed a date at the end of December.  I’ll bring some work I’ve already made on paper and hopefully make some more while I am there. Yuping is meant to be doing an internship at the Van Abbemuseum in Holland  but she hasn’t got her visa sorted because the process is long and complicated.  It’s such a shame, as she has so much to give to the art world and working in the arts is not an easy option in China.

I actually can’t say a lot as I have to get on with more work.  Today is the full day of art work that I have promised myself after the full day of admin.  I hope I get a lot done.  I will add pictures if I do.

On Friday night it is the opening of the New Light Art Prize exhibition at the Bowes Museum in County Durham   I’m quite overwhelmed by the standard of entries and it’s as well I’m not competing this time! If you follow this link  http://online.fliphtml5.com/sagj/fkma/#p=1  there is a catalogue where you can see the shortlisted works including a painting from me right at the beginning that will be going in the exhibition. Really looking forward to Friday night. I’m taking my Mum and Dad.



Here is  the work I made as promised.  Don’t ask me what anything is because it isn’t really anything… but I think if someone put some thought to it, it could all be something…. or just sort of sculptural.