So, we had our grand opening at the World Museum in Liverpool on Friday the 19th of September. I hadn’t realised just how grand the World Museum is until I went past it earlier that day on an open-top tourist bus. I was unable to stop myself exclaiming something that sounded like ‘Moly Twit!’ and as everyone turned to look at the over-excited, expleting woman at the back, I wanted to point and say “I’ve got work in there!”. Luckily, good old-fashioned British reserve kicked in and I just pretended to cough.
The time for the opening loomed large and, in the grip of the worst stage fright I’ve had in a long time and, looking faintly like Adam Ant’s mum in black and red, I made my way to the venue. A dozen or so of this year’s selected artists were in the anteroom, ‘mingling’. My first thought was how many of them already seemed to know each other, compounding the feeling that being an artist from the pointy end of the UK is a definite barrier to networking. I grabbed a drink and nervously made my way into the gallery.
There’s always a moment’s worry that my work has been stuck on a tiny monitor in the Gents or something, but on entering the gallery space it was instantly apparent that everyone’s work has equal billing. The quality of the curating hit me first and combined with the quality of the selected work it felt unsurprising that so many of our artistic household names are BNC alumni. As I walked around I wondered if the new David Hockney or Mona Hatoum were in this year’s show. I tried to hover inconspicuously by my videos to see if there was any audience consensus that I might be a ‘next big thing’ but moved swiftly on when I heard someone say “Have you seen that woman dressed as Adam Ant’s mum?”.