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China on my mind

Thanks to architect Charlie Sutherland, who brought two young architect / planners to Lawson Park (Karen and Grizedale Art's home in the Lake District) to talk about Cheng Du in SW China, a city of 12 million where Charlie is planning and designing many things including the 6000 sq m+ museum. 

We barely caught our breath as they showed us a series of startlingly futuristic animations of cityscapes, all of which will be done and dusted by 2016. One of their major practical and philosophical challenges is the linking of the rural to the urban - we toured them around the Lake District showing them what is called 'the tourist offer' here (shops selling tat, poor food, expensive parking) and highlighting how Grizedale and Somewhere's approaches to working with the indigenous cultures we find differed from this. Cheng Du will soon have all the iconic arts spaces of any world city that has arrived - museums, opera houses etc - but potentially it can also have a cultural masterplan that develops grassroots creativity for all its citizens and connects them with each other as well as China's past glory.

I gave a short presentation about What Will the Harvest Be? and hopefully the Mayor of Cheng Du is enjoying the website as I speak....

A Weekend in the Country - Dec 5th & 6th

We're screening our short film 'Little Deluxe Living' (followed by a Q & A with Karen) on Sat 5th Dec at 6pm as part of 'A Weekend in the Country' which is a new film festival by BRICarts at the Victory Hall in Broughton-in-Furness in the Lake District.
More info here.

Photo: Tim Olden

Somewhere on TV

Now I am slightly nervous about drawing anyones attention to this (!) but we might be on the telly tonight, & perhaps (of course) looking like real twits ...

Whilst up at Grizedale over the summer Hugh Fearnley-Wittingstall and the River Cottage crew, were filming a special programme around the Coniston Water Festival - which our It's a Lake District Knockout kicked off ...

Aside from having to let Hugh join in the tug-of-war (seen as the most 'suitable rural game' we played) the toast (pictured here) was all we, or the other guests, really saw of the man himself. However the crew did seem to be filming most of our event, so I'm intrigued to see how it comes out ... and how they explain that we were compering (then eating) dressed as Tudors!

Channel 4 20.00 - set your videos.