Last week I went on a miniature press trip in my own city of Glasgow and it was tremendous fun. It was hosted by Citizen M and involved a sushi-filled drinks reception, followed by a trip to the launch party for the Turner Prize 2015 at the Tramway and ending with a delicious dinner at Stravagin in the city's West End.
Citizen M had kept the itinerary for the day pretty much under wraps. We knew we had to check in at 2PM, that there would be drinks at 5PM followed by a preview of the Turner Prize and dinner. None of us knew that we were actually leaving the hotel until they announced that the taxis were waiting outside. This made for such a fun night full of surprises. It was definitely one of the best blogger events and group press trips that I've ever attended. The hotel itself is so stylish, quirky and packed with colour. My room even had mood lighting and sound effects that were controlled via an iPad.
Luckily I knew a lot of the other blogger lovelies there, so I enjoyed a great catch up. Naomi Baxter from Fabugloss is a professional makeup artist and she did my makeup for me. I am really pleased with how it turned out. We went for a grey-toned smokey eye with false lashes and a nude lip. I got so caught up in chatting with everyone that I didn't notice that the 200 photos I was taking on my DSLR weren't saving anywhere as there wasn't an SD card in there! All of the beautiful photographs in this post (except the one of myself) were taken by the official event photographer Joni Israeli.
After having my makeup done and checking out my room, we all met in the Canteen M bar area for drinks and lots of sushi. Two hours passed so quickly, and it was time to head to the Tramway arts space in the Southside area of Glasgow, just outside the city. This is where the Turner Prize 2015 exhibition is being held until 17th January 2016. Now I must admit, I'm not that keen on art- especially not the abstract displays usually produced by Turner Prize entrants; but I was keen to see if actually being there with the pieces would change my mind. Sadly it didn't. I just didn't get 80% of it. This year's nominees are Assemble, Bonnie Camplin, Janice Kerbel and Nicole Wermers. The oddest of the bunch was definitely the room filled with chairs that had fur coats on the back of them by Nicole Wermers. It just looked like chairs with coats hanging on them, randomly scattered about a room. Her work is supposed to reflect how we take ownership of something temporarily in society by hanging our coats on the back of it. I'm afraid I don't think this is art.
The nominee that interested me the most, and whose idea I think is the cleverest, is definitely Janice Kerbel. She created poetry and scores of operatic music to audibly reflect the pain and disasters that happen to a man called Doug. She tried to make the audience feel these traumatic incidents in his life through sound. Being an ex-actress and theatre professional, this really appealed to me. The problem I had with it though is whether it is art or performance i.e. does it belong in a gallery or on a stage? Where do you draw the line of what is actually art and what isn't? Oh the questions! I suppose, first and foremost, the aim of all four of the artists was to make me feel something. Janice Kerbel is the only one who did.
After viewing the four entrant's work, we proceeded into the party. There were lots of canapes made with local Scottish produce on offer, so we spent some time here trying everything before heading to dinner at Stravaigin. Our dinner was a wonderful three-course menu; again full of lots of local Scottish produce. I had pigeon breast as a starter, followed by Aberdeen Angus steak with mash and truffle butter as a main course and finishing with a Dulce du Leche parfait with raspberries and a chocolate brownie for dessert.
At midnight we called it a night and headed back to our comfortable king size beds at Citizen M. I slept soundly in a food and alcohol induced coma after a truly wonderful evening.
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