Art Trails & Open Studios
Every spring across the country artists, sculptors, makers and a host of other creative souls prepare to meet their public.
Finishing touches are made to paintings, completed works are brought out into daylight, studios are tidied, price tags prepared and, most wonderful of all, artists come together in collaborations that enrich everyone. It’s art trail season! Here’s a snapshot of some of the brilliant events taking place across the region. There’s plenty to see, and buy, (be prepared – many venues cannot take credit cards). Before you read on I’d like to applaud the organisers, many of whom are artists themselves, working tirelessly behind the scenes to bring about this visual feast. Thank you!
Chichester Open Studios Art Trail – Five Days In May
3rd, 4th, 5th & 10th 11th May
This event, now in its fourteenth year, has become hugely successful in attracting local artists from the Chichester area to open their studios to the public. This year we have 173 artists displaying and demonstrating their skills in 123 different venues. Studios are spread out from the city across the South Downs and out to the sea, 200 square miles of beautiful countryside and picturesque villages.
Entry is free and the choice of venues is entirely up to you. To enable you to plan your visit we have arranged a Preview Exhibition at the Oxmarket Centre of Arts in Chichester from 15th April until 27th April, where all artists will be represented. We have an illustrated Trail Guide which is available from The Oxmarket and other central locations.
For detailed maps, more information on the artists plus examples of their work visit www.chichesterarttrail.org
Brighton & Hove Artists Open Houses
For four weekends in May, the Brighton and Hove Artists Open Houses festival opens its collective 200 front doors to exhibit the work of over 1,000 artists and makers.
The Artists Open Houses offers the chance to meet the artists and makers in their studios and homes and to view and buy artwork directly from them. The festival showcases work in every media from paintings, prints, sculpture, photography and video, to ceramics, glassware, textiles, and jewellery. It is an open to all, inclusive event, welcoming young and marginalized artists alongside its many established, professional artists.
Some of the most exciting work from Open House artists can be seen in The Open Houses Open Exhibition, a curated open submissions exhibition: Open House Upstairs @The Regency Town House with a theme of Translations.
A few miles out of town, within the South Downs National Park, is an inspirational artists trail of 15 artist houses, studios and workshops in and around the historic and picturesque village of Ditchling, a village with a rich arts and crafts heritage.
Pictured below is the beautiful nature-inspired silver jewellery of Vee Pease, part of a brilliant collection of new work by two dozen extraordinary artists and makers at Hummingbird Studio, Brighton. www.hummingbirdstudio.co.uk
Also don’t miss AOH 2014 brochure cover artist Jonny Hannah’s exhibition The Road To Dark Town, at The Old Market, Hove. www.aoh.org.uk
On the weekends from 3rd to 25th May, West Sussex painter and avid sketcher, Jane Denman, will be marking her 14th year exhibiting at the Brighton Open Houses.
“Preparing for the Open Houses usually starts in late November with ideas which then hopefully turn into paintings and drawings by May! It sounds like a long time to prepare but paintings take time and a lot of planning as well as time for oils to dry in a wintry climate.” Jane would describe herself as primarily a figurative painter, “I am constantly hoping to re-create a figure in my own individual way and often striving to achieve some sort of movement.” Jane exhibits with her good friend and artist, Frances Doherty (beautiful, vibrant ceramics) “each year we look forward to meeting and greeting new and familiar visitors who often make us their first house to visit.”
See Jane’s large paintings, drawings and some screen prints at 31 Havelock Road, Brighton BN1 6GL, 3rd – 25th May, 11am-5pm, weekends only.
Horsham Artists in Action & Open Studios Weekend
On 17th and 18th May artists and makers from around the Horsham district will be staging an exciting event bringing together over 30 artists in one place at the Roffey Park Institute. This group event will be the second time that Horsham Artists have come together under one roof to display, demonstrate and talk about their work. Entry to this weekend event is free and there is ample parking.
A second weekend on the 7th and 8th June will see 20 artists and makers in the district open their studio doors for a two day Artists Trail in and around Horsham. This is the perfect opportunity to meet an artist in their studio and find out more about their work. Entry is free and many venues offer refreshments.
The Open Studios events celebrate the rich and diverse talent of artists and makers producing paintings, sculpture, jewellery, ceramics and other high quality handcrafted items all made in and around Horsham.
Find a trail map and more details on www.horshamartistsopenstudios.co.uk as well as various outlets in Horsham.
Steyning Arts Summer Art Trail
from 24th May until 8th June
Steyning Arts is a co-operative of local artists and makers. Between us we produce paintings, sculpture, ceramics, jewellery, photography and more! We aim to make art accessible to everyone and offer quality pieces by skilled artists. At our events we offer diverse and exciting works suited to every taste and budget as well as the chance to meet and chat to the artists.
Our summer Art trail has been growing in size and popularity year on year. This summer we will be opening venues from 24th May until 8th June across Steyning and surrounding areas giving you three weeks to discover artists working and exhibiting in their homes, studios and local businesses. This year’s art trail will be run alongside the Steyning Festival which means there’s even more o offer and you might find it hard to limit your visit to just one weekend!
Steyning Arts exhibits all year round in venues throughout our town and beyond. We are excited to announce a showpiece exhibition in September in the new Arundel museum. www.steyningarts.co.uk
Adur Art Trail
which takes place this year from 31st May to 15th June, is organised by members of local volunteer led group adurArtcollective (www.adurartcollective). It takes its name from the district west of Brighton covering Fishersgate, Southwick, Shoreham by Sea, Lancing and Sompting, and the River Adur, which runs through it.
For the first two weeks of June the area will be festooned with the familiar blue and white bunting, which marks out the Trail. There are around 100 artists this year showing their work in venues varying from houses to houseboats, from churches to cafés and from galleries to shops. Last year saw the first ‘Centerpiece’ exhibition in Adur Art Trail, held in St Mary’s Hall in Shoreham. This was a great success and this will once again be a venue. Most venues will be open at weekends from 10am to 5pm but several, such as St Mary’s Hall, will be open daily.
As well as these exhibitions there will be workshops, walks and talks over the two weeks. Full details will be found on the adurArtcollective website and in the Art Trail guide which will be available mid May. Anyone interested in joining adurArtcollective or finding out more about the Art Trail can visit our website
www.adurartcollective.co.uk or contact us on firstname.lastname@example.org
South East Open Studios (SEOS)
Friday 6th – Sunday 22nd June
This June, 300 artists are confirmed to take part in one of the largest Open Studio events in England. With venues across Kent, East Sussex and the Surrey borders the South East Open Studios creates an opportunity to see behind the scenes of an artist’s workspace, and meet the artist in an informal atmosphere.
Whether you’re a professional artist or just curious, open studio events offer a unique insight into various art practices. With free demonstrations, a chance to ask questions, time to buy original pieces and learn more about your community – the festival offers a great summer’s day out for all ages.
A free guide book with all the listings is available from May and viewable on the website. Trail maps are also available to plan a route easily. www.seos-art.org
Surrey Artists’ Open Studios summer event
From 7th-22nd June Surrey Artists Open Studios offers the public a unique opportunity to visit artists’ studios, meet artists & makers, view demonstrations, explore and buy original artwork, enter a free prize draw, view taster exhibitions and take part in creative workshops.
With over 200 artists throughout Surrey and around its borders taking part this year there is a wide variety of work including printmaking, jewellery, ceramics, textiles, painting, wood-turning, sculpture, illustration, glass work and much more. Studio locations are all over Surrey, from vibrant commercial town centres to beautiful rural villages in the heart of Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
This year’s summer open studio event will kick-start with a launch event at East Surrey College on Sunday 11th May from 11am-3pm. This will be an opportunity for the public to see a range of work from participating studios and to take part in a workshop or demonstration. It will give a taste of the open studios event to come, but with lots to see and do all under one roof!
The website offers a fantastic resource: an online interactive map where you will be able to find studios taking part and to easily plan your visit with the touch of a button. Pick up a brochure at one of the Surrey libraries or arts venues.
Highlighted artists include Adam Aaronson, who will be showcasing free blown glass vessels and sculptures at his studio in West Horsley. His highly finished glass forms are a celebration of the simplicity of pure form and layering. You can see Adam at work and also take part in one of his popular workshops. And ceramicist Ali Tomlin will be showcasing her work as part of a group of artists based at Shalford Mill. Ali creates one-off, contemporary, mostly thrown ceramics often using simple blocks of colour to contrast the clean white porcelain forms.
For a taster of what all these artists have to offer please visit Find A Surrey Artist on the website, www.surreyopenstudios.org.uk, which also features all of the open studios artists, listings on arts venues, galleries, other Open Studios and event listings from artist members showing their current workshops.
A Taster Exhibition will take place at the Lewis Elton Gallery, University of Surrey, from 6th-29th May 2014. Full details can be found in the brochure.
Worthing Art Trail plus Art Trail LIVE
Over three weekends 14th to 15th, 21st to 22nd & 28th to 29th June, Worthing comes alive with the 2014 Art Trail, which this year also features a full day’s live event on the 21st at St Paul’s Art Centre headlined by local band Yumi and the Weather. The live event includes the other arts such as music, performance, film, animation, the spoken word and more.
The Art Trail itself gives visitors a glimpse into the lives and work of the town’s thriving artistic community. See sculpture, ceramics, paintings, toys, video art, jewellery and much more. Most of the art work is for sale at very reasonable prices and at some houses you will also be able to buy tea, coffee and homemade cakes and sit in the owners’ gardens. This year there are over 473 artists involved and counting!
Another innovation this year is that the trail has teamed up with Northbrook Student Radio to produce a Worthing Art Trail Transmission show for all three weekends. Any artists with an internet connection will be able to listen to the show and play it in their venue. Also the Town Hall and Chambers will be open and will feature video art, film and hopefully animation, plus it’s an excellent space for the fashion students to show off.
Organiser Mark Guthrie says, “The Worthing Art Trail is a combination of my two passions, art and business. In my opinion it’s the most wonderful thing to experience in Worthing and the surrounding area. Being a father of three, I wish for my children to grow up in an area that is cultured, full of life and has community spirit. The Worthing Art Trail can be a hub for this goal and can embrace other organisations that share our passions.
I’m devoted to promoting and supporting local artists and wish for the art trail to grow and develop into something that excels in these areas. I would like to take a moment to thank the team for being as devoted and passionate as I am, and to thank those artists, members of the community and local businesses who show support for us every year.”
Visit www.worthingarttrail.com for more information.
Graffham Festival Open Studios
– a celebration of local artistic talent
19th to 27th July
The beautiful downland village of Graffham, just south of Petworth, has long been an inspiration to artists ranging from Henry La Thangue to Ivon Hitchens and continues to draw artists, craftsmen and musicians in the 21st century.
This summer Graffham village will be hosting a festival of arts between 19th and 27th July. From its beginning as a visual arts festival, Graffham Festival has blossomed into a more ambitious project which now incorporates a wider creative and community programme (see more at p39). There will be something for all ages to revel in.
Initiated by local artists, the festival programme is underpinned by an Open Studios art trail exhibiting a wide variety of work from fifteen local painters, sculptors, potters and craftsmen. These Graffham artists will be opening their studios to the public over this weekend and additional work will be displayed in public locations
Visit www.graffhamfestival.co.uk for further information or call 01798 867026.
Hampshire Open Studios
Saturday 16th to Monday 25th August
The Arts are thriving in Hampshire. In August hundreds of artists in over 170 different venues across the whole county will be opening their homes, studios, village halls, garages, and even sheds to welcome you in and invite you to discover their work.
You can enjoy a huge variety of talents from first time exhibitors to emerging newcomers and well known professionals. Each year brings new artists and new venues – some people drop out and new ones appear, it keeps the HOS fresh, interesting and exciting. For ten days you could take this opportunity to acquire an original, talk to the artists, whilst touring around Hampshire finding some new corner that you didn’t know or rediscover places that you haven’t visited for a while. So take a couple of days off, longer if you can, and tour round Hampshire visiting artists studios, galleries, potteries, jewellery workshops, village halls and anywhere else our artists and craftsmen have set up. You can find out about workshops, watch work in progress ask about materials or technique or just enjoy the arts.
It’s all free; for your nearest venue check the website or look for the pink direction arrows in your area that will guide you to the artist’s door. There you can pick up the 70 page catalogue and begin your Hampshire Arts tour. The artists hope that it will be a voyage of discovery, both of the county and the wonderful arts and crafts here, there’s some great art out there, go out and find it!
Arundel Gallery Trail
16th to 25th August
Established and emerging artists and craftspeople, working in a wide range of media and materials, will be exhibiting work on this year’s Arundel Gallery Trail. Exhibitions can be seen in the beautiful and historic houses and gardens of Arundel, not normally open to the public. Look out for the beermat competition winners in local pubs, bars and restaurants.
There will be affordable, exciting and inspirational art to be seen in unique and unexpected places; look out for sculpture on the roundabout and even an installation using the tidal nature of the majestic River Arun.
What makes the Gallery Trail so special? The chance to speak to the artists themselves about their work and practice giving insight into their inspiration. Trail Guides are available from all venues and see us on Facebook for artists’ and visitors’ recommendations.
This year there is an Art Charity Auction in the memory of the late Arundel Gallery Trail Artist Susie Jenkins. This will be held at The Cathedral Centre on Sunday 13th July; viewing from 1pm and auction to commence at 2.30pm. Artists from this year’s Gallery Trail are kindly donating work to raise money for Susie’s chosen charity in El Salvador. The work will be available to see on the Arundel Gallery Trail website from the beginning of July.
The Gallery Trail artists and organisers look forward to seeing you from 16th to 25th August, come and enjoy the art in this stunning historic town.