Devised by Exhibitions at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design, 'Nine Trades of Dundee' brings art and trade together, overcoming that initial barrier of what art is and preconceptions of who can be an ‘artist.’
Nine artists, with second non-art trades, were commissioned to lead collaborative art projects with workers from their particular trade in workplaces across Dundee from July 2009 – October 2010. A shared trade with its language, skill base and working experience is the common factor that brings artist and group together. The project then develops through engagement with the artistic process and experimentation to create a significant, inspiring and ambitious exchange between parties. This approach has resulted in a year of shared activity brought together in a hairdressing-and-art magazine, a reflective film considering the process of working within a controlled, industrial environment and a handmade coat, worn in a performance, that is embellished with 'tools of the trade' gathered through conversation alongside 6 other successful projects.
The organisers and two of the artists involved, artist and hairdresser Alan Grieve and artist and assistant bin loader Fraser Macdonald, talk about the project.