Brush up for this year’s Open Studios
Artisits in the area are being invited to sign up to be a part of Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios 2012. Applications are now open for the 16- day celebration of the county’s visual arts community, providing a platform for hundreds of artists to invite an eager public to see where and how they create their work. Run by Norfolk & Norwich Festival in collaboration with local artists, the open-access scheme is one of the most successful of its kind in the UK. In 2011 347 local artists welcomed more than 33,000 visitors into their workplaces. Attracting art lovers and curious first- timers with Art Trails, demonstrations and workshops, participating artists also sold an estimated £256,000 worth of work.
This summer Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios included 13 Art Trails and 200 separate events. It’s also a chance to boost the economy, with research by the scheme’s organisers showing that nearly one in four visitors to the studios this year ate out at a local restaurant or café and 31% visited a local pub. “Surviving as an artist or craftsperson,
is difficult in the current economic climate,” said artist Jemma Upton who set up the Big House Artists group in North Elmham this year with her partner James Paul Castle. “But there is a call for local art, crafts and expertise. We found that working together as a group we were able to cultivate better relationships with potential customers and attract a wider audience.” Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios 2012 will take place between May 26 and June 10. Artists wanting to take part can download an application from www.nnfestival.org.uk
. The cost for inclusion in the scheme is £95 for individual artists and £273 for groups of artists and includes a listing in the Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios brochure with a print run of 35,000, a listing on the Norfolk & Norwich Open Studios website, posters, postcards and the opportunity to take part in the high profile Central Taster Exhibition at The Forum in Norwich between April 23 and 26.
For more information email firstname.lastname@example.org
or call Sarah Witcomb on 01603 878285.
Gita Dickenson, from Overstrand, is a relatively unknown professional artist. “Taking part in Open Studios 2011 was a great opportunity for me to gain exposure and display my work to a wider audience,” she said. “It was really nice to meet people who either had a love of art or indeed were artists themselves and were touring around various studios.” She particularly liked the fact she could display what she wanted to, including sketches, and visitors could decide for themselves what they liked and discuss the various pieces. “In a gallery or exhibition this isn’t always possible,” she said, adding: “I’m very much looking forward to taking part in 2012.”
Leslie on board for 2012
Leslie Hawkes Nockels, from Cromer, works from his studio is an old railway carriage that has been sitting in the garden for 80 years or so
“The base now listing as the logs it rests on settle. My father used this to store his market garden produce. It is a
“passenger brake van” and over a 120-years-old. The North Norfolk Railway were very helpful – they say the Midland and Great Northern Line (the Muddle and Go Nowhere) never had a train of matched carriages – and they have helped me with some replacement things.
“Shadows of the original fitments and decorations can still be seen in the guards van section, and at the end four little windows open outwards allowing the guard to look back along the track as they trundled along.”
He said at that time it was lit by 10
oil lamps. “Someone had to walk along the roof and drop them down the six circular holes in the apex of the roof. I have just had it rewired and the electrician chose those same places to put my new lights!”
The black felted roof absorbed sunshine and used to make it very hot in summer. “I now have an insulated white roof,” he said. “It’s cooler in summer and warmer in winter. (When it was built all railway carriages left the factories with pure white canvas roofs!) “I do enjoy Open Studios – meeting a whole range of people, I do like chatting and they have such kind comments.
“Having to get all my work out on display gets me questioning and reassessing it and often at long last I see what it was that had been niggling for so long – no painting is safe from reworking until it leaves my studio.”
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