Emsworth Arts Trail returns in new slot

Emsworth Arts Trail is back for 2021 with a new date in the calendar

Carol Price
Carol Price

Rather than its usual spring slot, the trail will run this year on September 11-12 and 18-19.

Adding to the celebration is the fact that this year marks 20 years since the first Emsworth Arts Trail.

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“With 95 artists taking part in venues across the town, it promises to be a real celebration of Emsworth’s vibrant and diverse art scene,” says trail spokeswoman Kate L’Amie.

“Most of the venues are in easy walking distance of the town centre and in order to further the trail’s credentials as a low-carbon and environmentally friendly event, 2021’s trail guide will once again be printed on sustainable FSC-certified paper.

“A trail guide is produced which has a clear map and information about each of the artists taking part. The guide will lead visitors on a fascinating tour of paintings, ceramics, photography, jewellery, textiles, furniture and more throughout Emsworth.

“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.”

The Emsworth Arts Trail began in 2001, with just ten artists exhibiting in their home studios.

Marian Forster, the founder of the trail, is looking forward to participating again this year: “I am delighted to have seen the trail grow and flourish over the last 20 years. It has been a privilege to see the exciting range of artists that have joined us. This year promises to be just as colourful as ever.”

After the cancellation of last year’s trail due to Covid, the decision was taken to change the dates to September for 2021. Artists and venues are planning to ensure that the event takes place in a Covid-secure manner.

Trail chairman Carol Price said: “Last year was a tough year for the arts, and we are so pleased to be returning this year, breathing life back into Emsworth’s fantastic arts scene.

“We like to think of ourselves as a community of artists, with new exhibitors always welcome. There are 15 new artists joining us this year. There is always something to surprise and fascinate; the Emsworth Arts Trail has certainly put the town on the map as a destination for art.

“Over the last 20 years visitor numbers have grown and grown, with art lovers arriving from far and wide. The 2019 event saw 99,000 individual visits recorded over the two weekends.

“The trail includes many local businesses and community venues; artists and makers exhibit their work in shops, halls, pubs, sailing clubs, home studios and pop up galleries. The result is a creative and colourful journey around Emsworth; a vibrant, community-wide event!

“As well as the art venues, visitors can explore the picturesque harbour, the shops and of course enjoy refreshments in one of Emsworth’s many coffee shops, pubs and restaurants.

“With the majority of venues located within a mile of the town centre, visitors often make a family day out of it by walking, cycling or scooting along the trail.

“The printed trail guide has been available in shops around Emsworth from August, and includes a map so you can plan your visit. There is a wide variety of work on show – painting, printmaking, photography, textile art, wood, ceramics, jewellery, glasswork, sculpture and new for this year, a blacksmith! There is something to interest everyone.”

You can find out more about some of the artists every Thursday at 12.15pm on Instagram.

To preview all the artists taking part and plan your visit, see emsworthartstrail.org.uk.