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From Wirksworth to Upper Broughton

Art is a funny business. You never can be sure where it will take you.

September saw a month long exhibition at Wirksworth Heritage Centre, Derbyshire, coinciding with the fabulous Wirksworth Festival and Art Trail. The trail is a great opportunity to meet artists, see tons of great art and have a nosey around some of the quirky homes and buildings, hugging the charming characterful streets of this delightful Derbyshire town. The atmosphere buzzes with crowds of folk wandering in and out of numerous sites, enjoying what is essentially one huge art gallery.

Despite being well attended, and many admirers gazing fondly at the paintings, sadly, they all came back home with only cards sold.

Nevertheless, there was a glimmer of hope.

One lady came along to the festival who happened to be organising an art show over the border in Nottinghamshire at Upper Broughton. Spotting my art work, she invited me to submit to their event. I was, if I’m honest, a little deflated and thinking ‘what’s the point, if I can’t sell at a popular art festival’.

However, Upper Broughton may be a small village, but they certainly know how to host an art show. Not only was it very well organised, considerate, fair (they don’t rip off artists) and the standard of art work impressive but the event was surprisingly busy. Preview night, glowed with excitement and delicious nibbles, worth a trip for the fruit cake with cheese alone!

It took a lap of the main display room to come across ‘Summers End’, my first painting. It hung facing some distractingly yummy nibbles. I almost missed the little card tucked in the frame claiming it’s award, because celery stacked against grapes, cheese and slabs of fruit cake were tempting the eyes from the art. Celery crunching I read the card ‘Winner of the Fourwalls Award’. My inner child skipped a little dance of joy and between mouthfuls of dainty and delicious fruit cake I got chatting and missed the little red dot being stuck on it. Sold to a local in the village.

We returned on Sunday afternoon for more cake and to collect, only to walk through the door and discover a little red dot on ‘Pink Trees’, my second original painting in the show. ‘Wow’ both paintings sold and within minutes and just before the show ending a ‘Curious Hare’ print left the browser to travel to its new home in Valencia, Spain. That made my day.

I was fortunate enough to meet the buyers of Summers End and Curious Hare and that for me is a bonus. From concept to completion, so much time is devoted to each creation that a genuine bond develops, and this may seem daft, but I become somewhat attached to them and like to know where they’re going to live and with whom!

So happy to know that Summers End and Curious Hare have lovely new homes. A weekend of smiles.

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