Wednesday, 2 May 2007
("Beginnings" by Edwin Slater, mixed media)
Delicartessen rose from the ashes of Imagination Art.
After several months of working in the shadows, visiting studios and building up a database of potential artists... Imagination Art launched in September 2006 to open up a door to emerging artists with something new to bring to the Edinburgh art scene.
As well as new artists, it introduced a new concept where the process is as important as the final result.
The Opening exhibition was very well received and included the works of Surrealist artist Michael Forbes.
Apart from displaying an eclectic collection of emerging talent and recently graduated art students, I.A. embraced a different idea about displaying art. We arranged a seated area with a coffee table storing magazines and books lent by the artists, so that visitors could appreciate also the processes and inspirations hidden behind the work. Books, photographs, cuttings, poems...were part of the collection of personal objects that “spoke” to the viewers.
This dog by surrealist artist Michael Forbes was intentionally looking back at viewers and trying to surprise them while adding a whimsical, relaxed note to the sobriety of the gallery space. It played with the idea of object & subject by turning the viewers into the observed subjects instead.
After an acclaimed opening exhibition and only a few months after the launch, the gallery was forced to close down due to unexpected circumstances. I then decided to take a brand-new agreement to display art in the Edinburgh Central Youth Hostel (the first 4 starred Hostel in Scotland) as a starting point to rescue some of the ideas behind Imagination Art. That is how Delicartessen.co.uk was born on a full moon 2nd of May 2007, and we celebrated our official launch and first private preview at the Conference Room of the Hostel.
These pages are a visual and textual story of Delicartessen’s first steps since that day. I hope that you will enjoy them. More over, I hope that in accordance to our motto, “let art be the meeting point”, they will turn into a space where you feel welcome to contribute, participate and share with us.
The name came about as in I.A. we did catering for the launch that we felt really contributed to the amazing atmosphere. Food is shared among friends and family, in confidence, in celebrations. The name was therefore, initially associated to our intention of providing “state of the art” food at our previews, which for practical reasons, hasn’t been the norm, although we still like to do the odd Spanish tortilla and nibbles whenever circumstances allow.
Good cuisine is an art, and Delicartessen relates to good taste too. Not to mention the hunger of our artists to break into the big world with their art. Now our main exhibiting venue, Joseph Pearce’s bar, also serves beautiful food. So the name still applies.