North Light Arts marks ten years as a beacon of creativity
By Roger Cox
Saturday, 20th June 2020
“In a parallel universe, one in which the UK government acted swiftly and decisively in February and early March to prevent coronavirus taking hold on these shores, this week will see the opening of an exhibition at Dunbar Town House Museum and Gallery marking ten years of the local environmental arts organisation North Light Arts. On opening night, crowds of art lovers will mill around the exhibition space, sipping white wine, chatting merrily and giving hardly any thought at all to things like social distancing, R numbers and hand sanitizer.
Meanwhile, back in our world, due to the ongoing corona-crisis the creative director of North Light, Susie Goodwin, has had to cancel the planned retrospective and is holding it online instead. Digital exhibitions, no matter how slick, can never be a substitute for seeing art in the flesh, but even though this show isn’t occupying a physical space it still provides a good opportunity to look back on what has been a remarkably successful decade.
Conceived as an organisation that would “develop a creative conversation between specialists and communities as a catalyst for a change in our relationship with the environment,” North Light’s first major project was called The Knitted Harbour, and, on the surface at least, it did exactly what it said on the tin. In August 2010, knitters from all over the town came together to create an impressively detailed replica of Dunbar Harbour, using wool from local hill farmers for which there was no market at the time, and this was then exhibited at various venues around Dunbar and East Lothian, as part of a programme of events that also included performances by local writers, folk musicians and the community choir.
Featured Image: Dalziel + Scullion with work they created as part of their John Muir Residency in Dunbar in 2018