Excerpts from our Skills Biennale Press Release:
Scottish Sculpture Workshops is very pleased to present a collaboration between Ritchie Duncan of Alford Oats and Stephen Brandes, artist, for Skills Biennale 2014. Ritchie Duncan is an artisan oat miller employing methods and machinery dating back to the 1880s and Stephen Brandes is an internationally recognised visual artist and founding member of The Domestic Godless, a collective for Cork, Ireland, who seek to confound our everyday relationship to food with an irreverent attitude towards its presentation and consumption. Together they have concocted the Montgarrie Mobile Meal Mill and Porridge Bar.
Oatmeal and porridge have an iconic status within the dietary landscape of the British Isles. Both nutritious and versatile it is synonymous with both healthiness and austerity. Over the last two months, between Aberdeenshire and Cork, both artisan and artist have been developing ideas culminating in the two-week collaboration and public event on Friday 5th and Saturday 6th of September, from 12-6pm in the SSW yard.
Skills Biennale is a presentation of Slow Prototypes – a collaborative format established by SSW in 2012 – with five international arts organisations based in the North East. They are Deveron Arts, Scottish Sculpture Workshop, sound festival, Woodend Barn and Gray’s School of Art. Based around a central theme of Food and Sustainability, the Skills Biennale provides a platform for collaborations between artists and local food practices, ranging from small businesses, artisans, community groups and food banks.
The Slow Prototype format brings together international, contemporary artists with local craft and trades people, mutually affecting each other and generating surprising outcomes. Each collaboration emphasises the displacement from a default position, the artist and artisan coming together on equal grounds to create new experiences and share knowledge and make new work.