Well it's time for another guest post and today Guy Maberly tells all budding artists why they should register for the Christmas Artists Open Houses Festival...
It’s a fair bet that when, in 1982, Fiveway’s artist Ned Hoskins opened his front door so the public could view his artwork, he probably didn’t foresee what his idea would grow to become. Other artists in the area soon followed suit and the unique experience of viewing and buying artwork directly from the artist, in their home, proved to be a very popular one. Before long, the Artists Open House Festival was born.
That was 30 years ago and since then the festival has grown enormously. Today, a wide spectrum of arts and crafts can be found on display across the festival, from hundreds of artists, including jewellery, painting, sculpture, printmaking, ceramics, textiles, photography and many other media.
Registration is now open for this year’s Christmas festival. Any artist living within the 01273 telephone code area can register and the festival is open to all parts of the local community regardless of what stage you are at in your artistic career.
There are almost too many great reasons for registering to be part of the Artists Open Houses Festival, but here are the top five:
- Great opportunity to showcase your work
You will gain immediate access to a ready-made audience and with Christmas just around the corner this is an ideal time for you to have your work on display. Your profile, as an artist, will be boosted and, if you can grab peoples’ attention in your house, then your reputation can rapidly grow, through word-of-mouth alone, bringing in an increasing number of visitors to see your work.
- It’s cost-effective
Registration for the Christmas festival is less expensive than the one in May and, if you include other artists in your house exhibition, that cost can be shared. Exhibiting with friends (or other artists) can also attract more visitors to your house. Check our price list here.
- The opportunity to create your own gallery
Curating an exhibition is exciting and it's up to you how you choose to display your work in your own home. As one of our artists, Jonny Hannah puts it:
“I’ve always loved the idea that anyone can ‘do it themselves’. Galleries may not come knocking on your door, but you can make your own gallery. Break the rules, be informal, throw caution to the wind and see what happens."
The Artists Open Houses team are always available to provide advice or suggestions on how to exhibit your work, if you need it.
Once you’ve taken part in one AOH Festival you’ll almost certainly start to think about the next one. Kay Aplin’s story, of how she turned her home into a piece of art is quite inspirational.
- Access to marketing and publicity
Once you have registered, a dedicated PR and marketing team will be working alongside you to promote your work and the festival as a whole. At Christmas your listing will be featured in 25,000 brochures as well as on the AOH website and via a full digital media campaign. The AOH festival also receives local and national press coverage.
- Becoming part of a community
By registering you will become part of a large community of artists in Brighton and Hove. You will meet like-minded people, with whom you can discuss ideas, and there are always opportunities for collaborations for future events. And, as long-time Artist Open Houser Jude Clynick says, “despite all the work involved, it’s fun!’
The AOH Christmas festival begins on the last weekend of November and runs until the second weekend of December. If you want to get involved then make sure you register by Tuesday 1st October to be part of this fantastic celebration.
Find out more: