A university professor has lashed out at a council funded arts venue for putting “fame” above local talent.
Professor Amy Bryzgel, of Aberdeen University, arranged to host Out of This World, an event to celebrate the achievements of women.
The line-up includes Huntly-based artist Norma D Hunter, handweaver Mary Carol Souness and gender equality speaker Terri Bell Halliwell.
>> Keep up to date with the latest news with The P&J newsletter
The event was scheduled to take place outside Peacock Visual Arts, but organisers were told last week that the date, November 10, had been double-booked.
The venue did offer the festival organisers alternative space in a back room – but Professor Bryzgel argued it would not have sufficed for the scale of their event, and that the arts venue had “let down” local artists.
The manager of Peacocks told her that a “famous filmmaker” would be giving a workshop on her booked date.
Prof Bryzel said: “Peacock is one of the few arts venues in town and rather than work out a compromise that would enable people to attend both events, they have simply kicked out the ‘local’ ‘less famous’ artist, even though we had book the event well in advance and even started advertising it weeks ago, the other event only started advertising this weekend.”
Peacock Visual Arts is supported by Aberdeen City Council and Creative Scotland.
Joe Coleman, general manager of Peacock Visual Arts said he was “baffled” by the complaint.
He said: “Not only do we not recognise her version of events, she also went out of her way to reject the compromises and alternatives we offered subsequent to our error being discovered.
“We always look to accommodate and support local talent, as our current exhibition “Submit” demonstrates.”
The organisers of Out of This World have now organised a replacement venue for their show, now on November 10 at George Street, in front of John Lewis.
Prof Bryzgel added: “It is my hope that members of the public will feel welcome to come, have a chat, and participate in whatever way they feel comfortable, extending the use of the public square as a place for discourse to take place.”