This is the first installment of the Fly & the Lamb blog. It will be updated weekly and cover the previous week events and thoughts in Abbeyview, presenting an artistic perspective of the goings-on. The Fly & the Lamb are Nicola Atkinson Davidson, Artist in Abbeyview, and Carol Lambie, artist and contributor to the SEE EYE Art Event in Abbeyview. We hope it will encourage dialogue with people about Public Art.
Nicola became the Artist in Abbeyview in January 2007 with the aim of bringing concept of Public Art to the residents of Abbeyview in a relevant and exciting way.

There is a steering group in place to work with Nicola on this aim, namely Babs McCool, Joan Geddes, Jackie Powton, Stewart Christie, Ross Roddock & Mike Payne, with Linsey Leitch attending to take minutes. The steering group meets every two months to discuss the progress of the art projects both in development and completed. It is an interesting group gathered from the Planning Department, High School, Regeneration Forum and Fife Council. It is healthy mix of opinions and view points, each person having different versions of not only what an artist and public art is but what the outcome should achieve.
Kicking off with the SEE EYE Art Event in March in Allan Crescent, Nicola has created a structure of involving other artists to push the concept of taking artistic risks and to bring a freshness to projects whether temporary or permanent. It is human nature to want to please one’s audience but moreover it is the job of the artist to challenge, to not only explore the identity of a community but create objects and happenings for the people to explore. There is the question of who is the community? It is easy to refer to it as a solid entity, as “they”, and presume to know their collective opinion. This can either place more or less interesting boundaries on any creative processes involving the residents and therefor to acknowledge individual thinking will always give respect to those concerned.
Nicola’s approach over the following year is take a risk with the art she creates, in terms of the public’s expectation of Public Art. In turn she would, of course, like the community to take risks with her, in their participation and ownership of the projects. This will create dialogue within the Abbeyview area about Public Art. This blog will follow the progress of the ideas Nicola outlines below, while sharing the thoughts and musings of the Fly and the Lamb and all those who care to join us.

Clock People (Public Art Panel)
This has been named the Clock People.  It comes from the idea that a public art piece should be useful, beautiful and be the central point for the people of the area, just like a telling the time. Perhaps this is stating the obvious but I am drawn to make it challenging, for myself and the 12 people from Whitelaw Road, Macbeth Road, Almond Road & Tweed Street who will be invited to take part. They will be put into groups of four groups of three and be involved in a programme of talks and visits to inspire and inform them on art.
Tweed Street Tour
The Tweed Street Tour will focus on D6 bus route into Abbey view from Dumfermline. As starting point we will ask the people who live on Tweed Street, this is one of the street lines the route, to photograph the windows arrangements of the houses. For this initial stage I have invited the artist Marisa Privitera to engage with the residents of Tweed Street and to create a piece of work. We will see what happens over the next year.
A Public Sculpture in Abbeyview
We will start of the research, costing, best site and development of ideas to create a permanent piece of public art work in Abbeyview
R.A.D.A.R. Random And Dynamic Art Risks
The unforeseen happenings and inspiration in Abbeyview created by Nicola Atkinson Does Fly and three other artists. The only certain outcome will be a one colour 16 page booklet.
Details to follow on The Grass is Greener and Curiosity Cabinet.

Photographs © Nicola Atkinson Does Fly

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