The annual Emsworth Arts Trail is set to scale new creative heights this year thanks to a record-breaking number of artists and groups taking part. Venues throughout the town will see a total of 107 participants exhibit during the last weekend in April and first in May.
A preview event will be held at Brookfield Hotel, April 4, from 6pm to 9pm. MP Alan Mak will be in attendance and it is a chance to see a piece of art from each of this year’s exhibitors.
The Emsworth Art Trail runs on the two weekends of April 27, 28 and May 4, 5, 6.
Arts trail chairman Carol Price said: “The Emsworth Arts Trail has certainly put the town on the map as a destination for art. Now in our 19th year, we have seen visitor numbers grow year on year and art lovers arriving from far and wide – so much so, last year’s event saw more than 87,000 visits recorded over the five days at 99 venues – an impressive increase from the 8,000 who went to 26 venues when records began in 2012.
“We like to think of ourselves as a community of artists, with new exhibitors always welcome, so we are delighted to have 26 talented new artists join us. It means there is always something new to surprise and fascinate – from both the new and established participants.”
“Since the trail began in 2001, with just a handful of artists exhibiting in their home studios, the event has grown to include many local businesses and community venues. Artists and makers exhibit their work in local shops, halls, pubs, sailing clubs, home studios and pop up galleries, resulting in a creative and colourful voyage of discovery.
“With the majority of venues located within a mile of the town centre, visitors often make a family day out of it by walking or cycling along the trail. Plus, with such a wide variety of work on show, there is something to interest everyone from painters, printmakers, photographers, textile artists, wood carvers and ceramicists to jewellers and sculptors.”
Emsworth Arts Trail was first established in 2001 with just six artists opening up their studios to the public. Interest in the event and participation grew year on year and the trail was adopted as part of the Havant Arts Trail from 2004-2011. In 2012 the trail became the Emsworth Art Trail we know today, and this year will be the eighth trail since becoming independent from the Havant May Days.
“Emsworth Arts Trail offers the chance to see and meet designers, painters and makers in their own homes and studios. Community halls, pubs and shops also act as exhibition space to bring creativity to every corner of the town. A trail guide is produced which has a clear map and information about each of the artists taking part.”