Monday, 8 June 2009
One of the delights of being with the Cambridge Open Studios as a participating artist is that you also help out at some of the pre launch events. This is how I found myself in the Lothbury centre in Weston Colville at the invitation of Clarissa Cochran, not only to exhibit but also to steward the exhibition on the very first Saturday.
This could have been a quiet day in the beautiful countryside between Cambridge and Newmarket were it not for the welcoming and inclusive people of Weston Colville! For on this Saturday, they also held their Fun and family event. Jane Pryor, herself an abstract artist, was besieged by families with junior school children in the hall we shared. Paint brushes, bright colours and enthusiasm abounded as the visitors made leaf prints for a future Church event. A parallel session composed stories about what life was like in a flower.
Alan Ogden, helping organise the events, returned at lunchtime and friendly yet forceful manner ensured that I was not confined to the hall but got out into the sun and enjoyed some of the food on offer. I had the best chocolate brownies I've eaten for a long time!
But what has this to do with Open Studios?!? The village event had a beneficial effect on the exhibition. The parents took a spare moment to view the exhibition; when the BBQ finished, there was a steady trickle of curious visitors. There were at least 22 adults and at least the same number of children who came to look at the pictures, ask questions, peer down my microscope at the delightfully gruesome headlouse and take away the Open Studios leaflets.
The overall moral of the story is that if you want to make your exhibition even more successful in the future, consider joining forces with or timing it to match a nearby event.
The Lothbury exhibition continues till the end of June. Cambridge Open Studios Weekends start the first weekend in July. I'm exhibiting the first two weekends, so do come along to artists 134 (Chris Thomas) and 133 (Alison Hullyer) in Milton!