2018 saw the continuation of a movement of artists taking matters into their own hands. Markets and independently run exhibitions once again dominated the art calendar and artists opened their doors in more studio and home sales than in the past. This new approach to selling art means that galleries are no longer the sole location for buyers and artists are able to take more risks and get direct feedback from their supporters. This has translated into artists trying new things, slowly shedding their safer and more practical practices. Our prediction for 2019 is that the local art scene will see artists delving into new areas, expanding their skill set and dabbling in brand new mediums. Already we have seen Wulf transform again with his latest exhibition of monoprints derived from lifting oil paintings off glass plates. Ashley Thompson has maintained her style but began working on circular canvases and changed the observers point of view by having us look through portholes onto seascapes and landscapes limiting our visibility and telling us our position; a bold take on familiar content. Danielle Du Boulay hung massive abstract canvases as part of the BPTT Bridge Gallery's changing display, showing a new side of this artist and nodding toward things we can expect from her in the New Year. Nicholas Huggins moved away from his typical format and started free hand drawing for a series of portraits that bring a new feel to his signature brand.
The moral of the story? While we can only ever hazard a guess at what is to come next what we do expect is more risk in 2019 new perspectives and artists challenging themselves in new ways and we eagerly look forward to all the mistakes, mess, happy accidents and general newness that will come with this.