Ribble Valley Art Studios – the new artists’ hub established in the heart of Clitheroe – held a preview of its first Annual Open Art Exhibition and presented the prize of £150 plus a solo exhibition and a year’s membership of the studios.
It went to Helen Smith, from Chatburn, for her autobiographical painting entitled “Broken”.
A striking image in stark pinks and greens against white, Helen’s picture was selected from around 45 pieces responding to the theme “New Beginnings”.
Artists from as far afield as Carlisle and Rochdale, Preston and West Yorkshire entered high quality pieces in a wide range of media and approaches. Bold landscapes hung alongside delicate textile pieces, precise etchings rubbed shoulders with collage work and witty photography sat with sculptural work.
The presentation of Helen’s prize was made by judge Richard Cross, a tutor and highly regarded local artist whose work has hung in the National Portrait Gallery and the Royal Academy. He was assisted in the selection and judging by Ribble Valley Arts Officer Katherine Rodgers and Jill Wright and Robert Parkinson, resident artists working at Ribble Valley Art Studios.
A delighted Helen commebnted: “I’m really pleased with this, especially as it gives me the chance to hold an exhibition – even better to win one! – and to get membership. I hope one day to have a studio here at Ribble Valley Art Studios.”
Helen’s exhibition at the studios will take place in the New Year.
Visitors crowded into the gallery and were very impressed by the work on display. In his presentation speech, Richard Cross described the studios as a “valuable asset to Clitheroe”. The work of the resident artists was also displayed and met with great interest.
The exhibition runs until November 28th and most of the work is for sale. The Studio and Gallery, at Bowland Chambers, off Wellgate, opens for visitors to view and buy on Wednesdays and Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The doors may also be open when artists are in working, and by appointment.
Proprietors Beverley Chapelhow and Keith Parkinson said: “If our board is outside we are open so please come and see us. Our artists are happy to talk to you about our work. We are friendly and approachable and welcome visitors.”
For more information about the studios, including the adult art classes run there and the forthcoming Christmas Showcase Exhibition, call in person, phone 07528055723 or visit: www.ribblevalleyartstudios.com