Hot 100 2012: 39-30
Konx-Om-Pax, Ingleby Gallery and NVA among Scotland's hottest cultural contributors in 2012
The Hot 100 is our list of Scotland’s 100 hottest individuals and groups who’ve made a splash this year, from comic book writers to comedians, artists to actors. If they've contributed to Scotland's cultural landscape in 2012, you'll find them here.
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Running up that hill
The internationally renowned public art organisation surpassed itself with an ambitious collaboration with the Edinburgh International Festival. Speed of Light brought Arthur’s Seat to life in a breathtaking visual display that included choreographed runners in specially designed light suits and participants carrying illuminated, singing staffs. (AR)
38 Anna Freemantle
This model-turned-event organiser added a new fixture to Edinburgh’s calendar, with the first Edinburgh International Fashion Festival. The line-up featured catwalk shows from Pam Hogg, Aimee McWilliams and bebaroque, plus perfumier masterclasses, and talks on ‘Dressing the Self’ and ‘The Fragility of Ideas’. The year ends with a Christmas market from Noir!, Freemantle’s club-music-events hybrid. (CS)
School dinner blog
Argyll primary pupil Martha Payne became the unlikely champion of an outcry against poor quality school meals via her NeverSeconds blog, galvanising campaigners and celebrity chefs to demand more appealing food in our institutions and raising £120,000 for hunger charity Mary’s Meals. (DR / Photo: John Helliwell)
36 The Gardener’s Cottage
Edinburgh’s most intriguing new restaurant opening in 2012, Ed Murray and Dean Mailley have invigorated the capital’s food scene with their commitment to good value set meals, ultra-local sourcing and convivial, communal dining in an unexpected setting. (DR)
35 Rob Drummond
A shot at stardom
A prominent member of the new generation of exciting Scottish theatre-makers, Drummond’s Bullet Catch was one of the highlights of this year’s Fringe. Always keen to suffer for his art, Drummond’s re-enactment of the world’s riskiest stage stunt required an audience member to fire a gun at him every night. (AR)
‘I’d say I listen to music 75% of the time. When I’m awake that is.’ It comes as zero surprise to learn that Tom Scholefield, aka Konx-Om-Pax, is fairly obsessed with his music.
‘Something like ‘Donkey Rhubarb’ by Aphex Twin sounds amazing first thing in the morning. Or when it’s grim weather outside, like today, some old jungle, or cheesy happy hardcore is good. Techno, house, or dance is what I’m usually listening to.’
Scholefield’s kaleidoscopic work covers music from pretty much every angle going – there’s the sleeve artwork he created for Oneohtrix Point Never, tour T-shirts and posters for Mogwai, 3D sound/ music installations for Optimo (Hot 100 #57), live visuals for Laurel Halo, videos he’s directed for Hudson Mohawke (Hot 100 #17) and animated for Jamie Lidell… safe to say, the boy is no slouch. And when he’s not in the studio designing dripping, glowing, morphing acid-trips to look at, he’s producing his own aural equivalents.
His glistening, eerie music spans the soft ambient soundscapes of Eno, the chiming, retro-futuristic synths of his friend Daniel Lopatin, the polychrome beat odyssies of HudMo and the unnerving drama of Mogwai. If you’re wondering where to hear it, you’ll find last year’s Light and Extension on his label, Display Copy (yep, he runs his own label, too). This year’s superbly textured and chilled Regional Surrealism was his first on Planet Mu. For a taster, try Scholefield’s own favourite, the Boards of Canada-esque last track, ‘Let’s Go Swimming’, where he slowed down the vocal on a Hans Christian Andersen storytelling tape he’s had since he was a toddler. ‘That’s my favourite – for nostalgic reasons. I slowed it down and it ended up this kind of spaced-out jam.’
Look out for an EP in 2013 from the ever-talented Konx, plus experiments in analogue film and coloured liquids, to use as projections at live shows next year.
‘I guess I like to keep myself interested,’ he understates. ‘I don’t have any dream plans for next year really, just to do more stuff, and better. My music direction doesn’t so much change, it just meanders. But I feel like now’s the time to step up, and do bigger things.’ (CS / Photo: Kirstin Kerr)
Friends of Franz
Craig Tannock’s hipster bar-venue-vegan café (with its own excellent record shop, Monorail) hit its tenth anniversary. As if to confirm its status as one of the city’s brightest outposts of indie culture, the celebratory party featured sets from Muscles of Joy and RM Hubbert, plus Franz Ferdinand’s first Glasgow show in four years. (DP)
32 Greg McHugh
Character actor delivers
A solid year of consolidation for the Edinburgh-born comic as he reprised two very, very different characters: the fowl-blowdrying Howard in Channel 4’s Fresh Meat and his camp soldier in the Beeb’s Gary: Tank Commander. He was also very much himself in Mr Whitehall’s comedy travelogue, Hit the Road Jack. (BD)
31 Ingleby Gallery
It’s four years since Edinburgh’s Ingleby Gallery moved premises to Calton Road on the site of the former Venue nightclub, going on to carve out a reputation as one of the most exciting private galleries in the UK. But even by their own high standards, 2012 has been a remarkable year for the Ingleby, with a programme that included acclaimed exhibitions by well-known Scottish artists such as Alison Watt and Ian Hamilton Finlay alongside new work by up-and-coming young talents like Kevin Harman.
‘Two things stick out,’ says co-proprietor Richard Ingleby of his highlights from the past year, ‘visiting Jonathan Owen’s studio to see a newly completed carving and realising that, in the course of a single work, he’d become a world-class artist. And watching happy, smiling people sheltering from the pouring rain, bathed in the gorgeous light of Callum Innes’ Regent Bridge.’
Another event that fired the public’s imagination, receiving a five-star review from this very magazine in the process, was the Ian Hamilton Finlay retrospective, Twilight Remembers, which included a vast range of familiar and recently discovered work from the poet, artist and gardener. ‘Finally, 20 years too late, Scotland has woken up to the fact Finlay was one of the great artists of the 20th century,’ says Ingleby. ‘Our show felt very true to Ian’s spirit and the combination of subversive humour and poetic seriousness seemed to strike a chord with people.’
As Ingleby makes clear, there are no plans for the gallery to rest on its laurels in 2013. ‘We’re looking forward to solo shows for Katie Paterson, Peter Liversidge and the brilliant Brazilian Iran do Espirito Santo. We’re also working on a series of very short, connected shows that will leave people exhausted and stimulated in equal measure.’ (AR)
30 Vicky Featherstone
Going out on a high
The inaugural artistic director of the National Theatre of Scotland may be moving on to London’s Royal Court, but she’s leaving the national company in rude health. Successes in 2012 included the popular comedy-horror hit An Appointment with the Wicker Man and pulling together the prescient exploration of print journalism, Enquirer, just in time for Leveson. (AR / Photo: Mark Hamilton)