Forest & Valley Open Studios 2016 9th – 24th July 2016
Encouraging new talent, supporting established artists and commissioning new work.
Our area has a rich seam of artists living and working, and often inspired by, this beautiful part of Britain. The organizers have created the best free summer arts event to promote the arts and give people a great opportunity to shop for unique works as well as to meet and chat with the artists who made them.
This years sees some new innovations for this stalwart of the summer arts scene. The ever popular open studios, which sees artists throughout the Forest & Valley throw open their studio doors to the public, continues with some bright new names and new work from the great artists who have featured many times before. In addition and new for 2016 the festival organizers challenged artists to create new work on a the theme of “Are the natural resources of our forests merely a commodity”. Each artist was asked to submit their interpretation of the brief and the best were invited to create their ideas and awarded a small cash commission.
An independent panel made the final selections from the applicants and that will form a specific show at the Garden Café at Lydbrook.
In another new development this year, we have, with the help of local arts facilitator Rachael Shilston, launched our schools and young people program. The kids from the schools involved will be creating their own work either as individuals or in collaboration and this work will also feature in it’s own separate shows.
Inspiring creativity Rachael Shilston said
“I am delighted to be involved in Open Studios and am thrilled that two primary schools (St John’s C of E Academy & Mitcheldean) will be joining us for this year’s event. I believe it is important that young people’s artwork is also celebrated during this event, alongside local amateur and professional artists. Year Six pupils from both schools, will produce artwork that will be showcased in a number of popular venues across the Forest of Dean, including Puzzlewood and Hart’s Barn Cookery School.”