This year’s Spring Fling visual art and craft event was the biggest ever with 40,000 studio visits and £1.4 million for the local economy.
Organisers are celebrating a huge turnout which brought visitors from across Scotland and the rest of the UK to Dumfries and Galloway between -
Three national exhibitions of work by D&G artists and makers, in Glasgow, Newcastle and London also proved a big hit, attracting over 18,000 visitors.
Leah Black, Spring Fling Director, said: “It’s been a tremendous year, with more artists and makers than ever taking part and more than ever to see and do.
“The results have been wonderful for Spring Fling and the whole region. It’s great that such a large number of visitors have come her to enjoy some superb contemporary art and craft, and to get a taste of all the other wonderful things Dumfries and Galloway has to offer.
|Will Barras and Amy Winstanley as part of Spring Fling's Rural Mural|
“Spring Fling is constantly trying to renew itself and come up with fresh ideas. This year the Rural Murals were an enormous hit, with national and international street artists creating fabulous artworks on everything from houses and barns to a tractor and a horse blanket.”
The statistics for 2014 show that the main weekend in Dumfries and Galloway attracted 13, 450 visitors (up 13% from last year) who made 40,340 visits to 95 studios and spent £1,405m (up 42% from around £990,000 the year before). Nearly £250,000 was spent in studios with the rest going into other areas of the economy such as restaurants and hotels.
For the artists themselves there were tremendous benefits, with an average 429 visits and spending of £2,645 per studio – an increase of around 24% from 2013. Three quarters of the artists were also commissioned to produce new work.
Perhaps most rewarding of all was the public reaction, with 99% of visitors saying Spring Fling was “good” or “excellent”, worthy of recommending to other people.
Councillor Colin Smyth, the council’s Events Champion said: “The superb results for Spring Fling demonstrate the timeless appeal of the event, the hard work of its staff and board and the sustained investment that the council has put in over a number of years.
“Spring Fling is exactly the kind of international quality event that the Dumfries and Galloway Major Festivals and Events Strategy 2014-2017, was established to assist and help reach new heights.”
Looking to the future - applications open on for six weeks for SF 2015 with roadshow and photography sessions for those who are new to SF
Applications are once again being invited from our neighbours in south and east Ayrshire, Borders, Cumbria, South Lanarkshire. And new for 2015 - we are inviting applications from our Northern Irish neighbours