Four North-east artists will share a £3,000 Seed Fund to make some of their ideas become a reality and form a key part of the Look Again festival, which begins in April.
Celebrating the best of visual art and design, the festival aims to challenge the way we see the Granite City and put the North-east on the map as a centre of excellence for innovative and imaginative projects.
Supported by Aberdeen City Council, the cash was open to North-east artists and designers at any stage of their creative careers.
It is hoped the initiative will encourage more artwork to be produced and shared across any publicly-owned streets, pathways, parks and open spaces.
“It’s beyond the white gallery space so you’re reaching a whole other audience.”
That’s one of the things which drew Janet McEwan to become involved with the festival.
Having moved to the Granite City to study at Gray’s School of Art in the 1970s, she wanted her piece to reflect the local culture.
She said: “I’m really interested in working in the public realm and I’m really interested in keeping my connection with Aberdeen.
“I think it’s great to have art moving out into public space – Spectra and Look Again festivals are positive moves as far as I’m concerned.”
The inspiration behind Janet’s work Ring Tones was the church bells of St Nicholas Kirk.
Her piece will be sound-based but also draws on the architecture of the church.
It will be produced in collaboration with an Aberdeen-based musician.
She said: “Working with sounds in the public realm is a whole new arena for me so I’m being tested and slightly stretched.”
Janet believes Look Again festival, which first started in 2015, is building in quality year-on-year.
She added: “The ideas are getting slightly more challenging every year and more interesting.”
Allan Watson first came to Aberdeen in 1982.
He arrived in the Granite City as a student at Gray’s School of Art and has remained for most of the time since.
His piece Road Sign was inspired by electronic traffic signs that he wanted to show more unusual messages.
He said: “The initial idea started by sitting in traffic and seeing this variable-message sign. I wished it was saying something more interesting than just to turn left.
“Since then it’s evolved into the notion of putting that machine out of place and taking it somewhere it shouldn’t be.”
His piece does not have a specific location yet, but the artist hopes it could be put in the St Nicholas Kirkyard.
He believes the Look Again festival is important for bringing artists to the Granite City and creating a cultural melting pot for ideas.
Allan added: “Culture doesn’t happen in isolation, culture is constantly moving in and out of each other’s territories.
“In that sense I think that’s an absolutely crucial part of Look Again.
“The mixture of artists who are based locally and internationally – that’s something I think that’s really important.”
Fiona McCubbin is a Dundee-based visual artist who graduated from Gray’s School of Art in 2013.
Fiona specialises in printmaking, sculpture and text-based work.
She said: “I found the initiative really exciting. It was motivating to work on a project that I maybe wouldn’t have had the chance to do otherwise.
“I think Aberdeen’s definitely moved forward with the way viewers perceive visual art.
“There’s definitely a lot more socially engaged practice going on and performance art that the public seem to want to get involved with.
“This is a definite progression and way forward for Aberdeen.”
Fiona’s is producing a text-based sculptural piece in the city centre.
Called Weather the Storm, its aim is to instil hope in people during the post-Brexit vote economic climate.
Meanwhile, Craig Barrowman will also exhibit his piece Through the Looking Glass.