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Artists from West Norfolk get set to welcome visitors as part of Norfolk Open Studios

Makers and creators from across West Norfolk are preparing to open their studio doors to share their creative processes.

The artists will be opening their studio doors as part of Norfolk Open Studios from September 24 until October 9.

The free event will see more than 290 artists taking part throughout the county and in West Norfolk 33 artists will be sharing and selling their work.

Nelson Academy. Credit: Gill Sekatawa. (58760270)
Nelson Academy. Credit: Gill Sekatawa. (58760270)

Artists will be at work in their studios, garages, spare rooms, garden rooms, community spaces and schools sharing how they work.

Artists at all stages of their careers will be taking part, from school and college students through to emerging artists and established and professional creators and makers.

Visitors will find painters, sculptors, weavers, ceramicists, furniture makers, wood workers, jewellery makers, pyrographers, textile artists and lots more throughout the varied landscapes of Norfolk.

Deborah Sedgwick 'A Study In Gouache’ 2022 (58759573)
Deborah Sedgwick 'A Study In Gouache’ 2022 (58759573)

Artist Jennifer Williams, who is based in Stow Bridge, said: “I’m taking part in Norfolk Open Studios to raise awareness about my practice, working in a niche and understated handcraft that is ultimately fizzling out – I want to inspire and educate people about the exciting possibilities.

“I use a large 16 shaft George Wood Dobby Floor Loom and a smaller 4 shaft table loom. My studio is based at my home in West Norfolk in a detached partly agricultural building with beautiful views of the farmers’ fields.

“Visiting my studio, you can expect to have full demonstrations of my working practice upon request and you can give any of these things a try with the assistance of myself. I decided to take part in Norfolk Open Studios because of the encouragement and community of the group, and I want to offer an insight into what I do.”

Painter Peta Wainwight based in Great Bircham said: “I am taking part in Norfolk Open Studios because it is a great way to meet other artists and showcase my work. Working alone in a studio is isolating so I like to find opportunities to meet like-minded people and also get my work out there and seen. I hope to have lots of visitors and meet many new faces.

Peta Wainwright, Great Bircham: Anyone for a Dip? (58760195)
Peta Wainwright, Great Bircham: Anyone for a Dip? (58760195)

“I am really excited to be taking part, I have always wanted to be involved in Norfolk Open Studios and I am finally doing it. I can’t wait to invite people into my treasured space.

“I find pleasure in the Norfolk landscape, especially the wide-open skies and the atmospheric and changing weather patterns. I love the sea as much as I do the country lanes. So, my work is always reflecting where my current interests lie.”

Art Trails will also be in place across the county, allowing visitors to enjoy several studios and local attractions in one day.

In West Norfolk five schools are taking part – Nelson Academy, Gaywood Primary School, Kings Lynn Academy and Heacham and Snettisham Schools.

Deborah Sedgwick 'A Study In Gouache’ 2022 (58759573)
Deborah Sedgwick 'A Study In Gouache’ 2022 (58759573)

Throughout the duration of Norfolk Open Studios, artists will be offering additional events, demonstrations and workshops to share their skills and practice. In West Norfolk there is an online art auction, autumnal art-making session and mono-printing workshop.

Ros Dixon, Norfolk Open Studios Administrator, said: “It’s always exciting planning for Norfolk Open Studios. The event brings so much pleasure and inspiration to visitors, and it gives people a brilliant reason to go out and about in Norfolk to explore and discover.

“The artists look forward to it so much as well, they really enjoy the opportunity to invite people into their workspaces and to have a chat about their work.

“There are some amazing Norfolk schools taking part, the work they create is extraordinary. It’s well-worth including some of these schools in your studio visits.”

Studios are free to visit and much of the work will be for sale. All details, including studio opening days, directions, art trails and additional events and demonstrations, can be found in the Norfolk Open Studios brochure and on the event’s website.

One visitor to the last Open Studios event said: “A marvellous insight into the incredibly talented artists we have here in Norfolk! Loved it.”

Another said: “In a world of mass production, it is easy to forget about creativity.”

Brochures can be picked up from Tourist Information Centres, libraries, cafés and various art venues across Norfolk. For more information visit norfolkstudios.org.uk

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