Monthly Archives: December 2011

98 registered for the conference

Nearly 100 people have registered to attend the AB+ Cultural Conference on 26 January 2012.

“This is very gratifying,” says Duncan Hendry, speaking on behalf of the conference’s Steering Group. “We anticipated that the conference would attract delegates from a wide cross section of the arts community in Aberdeen and the surrounding area and that is exactly what we are getting. But, in addition, it’s attracting people from organisations from further afield who have an interest – and a say – in the city, as well as delegates from the political and business communities.

“At a time when Creative Scotland is considering how they should invest in Aberdeen and the City Council is considering a UK City of Culture bid, this is a pivotal moment for the city and this conference will provide an opportunity for anyone with an interest in the arts and culture to have their say in shaping the future of the city.

“We are confident that the quality and quantity of the delegates who have already committed to attend the conference will ensure a lively creation of new ideas for driving culture forward in Aberdeen.

“Nevertheless, we are certain that there are many other people from the arts world who will sign up to attend the conference once they return from their festive break.”

Further details of the important workshop sessions – essentially the heart of the conference when ideas will be developed – will be announced early in the new year.

Meantime, the conference Steering Group offer you the best wishes for a happy, fulfilling and contented 2012.

Conference speakers announced

We’re pleased to report that our main speakers have confirmed their attendance. Charles Landry, an authority on urban futures and the use of creative approaches to enable cities achieve farsighted aims, will be joined by Valerie Watts, Chief Executive of Aberdeen City Council and Professor Paul Harris, Head of Gray’s School of Art.

Valerie will be describing her experiences in Northern Ireland with Londonderry’s bid to become European Capital of Culture and the impact this had on the arts there, whilst Paul will talk about bringing the V&A to Dundee.

Of course, whilst the speakers are important, the vital element will be the delegate participation in the two workshop sessions and we’ll have more details of these – and the subjects to be discussed – in the new year.

Some people have been asking us what time the conference starts and finishes. The answer is 9.15 for coffee and registration for a 10.00 a.m. start and close of business at 5.00 p.m. although there will then be an hour’s social and a glass of wine for those that want to network. We’ll bring you further news about the conference nearer the time, but in the meantime, could you please complete a short survey, regardless of whether you intend to come to the conference or otherwise?

The survey can be found at You should choose whether to answer as an individualor on behalf of an organisation (NOT both please!). The survey results will help us plan exactly how the conference runs so if you could please please please complete the survey by the end of the year, that would be very helpful. Thanks in anticipation of your co-operation!


Finally, if you haven’t signed up for the conference, the e-mail address again is This is a conference not to be missed! An opportunity for your voice to be heard in driving the future of the arts and culture in Aberdeen.