Positive Feedback and Future for Lyme Regis ArtsFest

Lyme Regis ArtsFest concluded its 10th successful year at its Annual General Meeting on Thursday 24th January. Retiring Chairman Sally Holman presided over the meeting and reflected on the last 10 years, expressing delight at how the annual festival has evolved and grown, attracting new artists and events across the arts spectrum each year. Healthy visitor numbers, well-attended workshops and events, and good sales for artists at the 2012 ArtsFest reinforce the positive message that the Lyme Regis arts scene is alive and kicking!

In her financial report, treasurer Wendy Davies especially thanked Lyme’s local businesses, both for welcoming artists onto their premises as part of the Art Trail and for so many having sponsored a ‘red spot’ in the ArtsFest brochure. Added together, these £25 spots helped to cover the costs of the colourful and all-important brochure. Appreciation was also given for the continued financial support of West Dorset District Council and Lyme Regis Town Council.

The biggest thanks of the evening went to Sally Holman for her years at the helm of ArtsFest. Though leadership now passes to Christine Allison and Karol Kulik, supported by the newly elected steering group, Sally will continue to work on ArtsFest events and workshops with co-ordinator Anthea Simmons.

As Sally pointed out, ArtsFest has always valued the importance of building partnerships with the local community. This year that objective is being addressed by its exciting re:collection project with the Lyme Regis Museum. Launched last autumn and having received recognition and a grant from Arts Council England, the re:collection initiative will come to a creative crescendo at this year’s ArtsFest (21st - 29th Sept). As a precursor, ArtsFest and the Museum are hosting a series of exhibitions in the Museum’s Rotunda Gallery, the latest of which—photographer Maisie Hill’s ‘Both Object and Observer’—runs until 27th March.

The AGM was followed by a thought-provoking presentation and lively discussion led by illustrator Keith Robinson about an old favourite, Vincent Van Gogh. Keith and ArtsFest are keen to continue these friendly and informal discussions (now called ‘Talking Pictures’) on a monthly basis to be held in a congenial local venue. As sessions will be open to all, please email keith@keith-robinson.com to register your interest in joining ‘Talking Pictures’.

Several artists new to ArtsFest attended the AGM and the group is eager to welcome creative people from all disciplines. An Artists’ Handbook, providing full information about getting involved, is available from www.lymeregisartsfest.com, and the next ArtsFest Artists’ Meeting will be at 7pm in the Guildhall on Tuesday 5th March.

2 February 2013

Published on 04/02/2013.

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