LookLook is an informal project organised by Su Grierson inviting international artists to Scotland to network with Scottish artists, visit galleries and arts organisations and experience some of our outstanding natural land. More than 60 international artists have visited since 2001.
Artists stay at my home in rural Perthshire or with other artist hosts when we travel further afield. They are networked with other rurally based artists as well as those from the cities. LookLook began when I left my Glasgow workplace to make my studio at my home in Perthshire. I felt a strong need to make my place, where I was living and working, the centre of something rather than feeling on the edge of an arts structure dominated by the city.
The first visit in 2001 happened when, on a first visit to Lithuania I was inspired by meeting six young textile artists who were then just completing their Masters degrees in Vilnius. Their determination and self belief in the face of very difficult times in their newly independent country triggered me to make them an invitation. The success of their visit and the spin offs for other Scottish textile artists later invited to Lithuania, were the drive for me to continue. Two larger visits were created in 2002 and 2005 in conjunction with Diane Maclean, and since then I have continued with further visits frequently based around attendance at the Perthshire visual Arts Forum of which I was Chair for seven years.
There have never been funds available in Scotland to support this project which has always meant that visiting artists must raise their air fares in their own country, and in Scotland they are supported by in-kind donations and goodwill of myself and local artists.
A great many spin-off opportunities have arisen directly through contacts made on LookLook both for Scottish artists and between the international visitors. As the web of connections widens it becomes impossible to trace the numerous indirect links that have been generated.
Artists have come from Lithuania, Estonia, Latvia, Finland, Sweden, New Zealand, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Spain, Iceland, Denmark, Mauritius, and Africa.