New chairman and committee for Chichester Open Studios

It’s all change at Chichester Open Studios as they wave goodbye to the committee of the past two years and say hello to the new chairman Jazmine Saunders and her team.
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Chichester Open Studios 2024 will be held on May 18, 19, 25, 26 and 27 (Bank Holiday Monday) when Jazmine will be hoping to build on the 150-plus artists who took part this year. Registration for 2024 runs throughout November, with more details on or get in touch via [email protected]. The aim will be to have a preview exhibition in mid-April at Oxmarket Contemporary ahead of the trail itself.

Jazmine took over as chairman from Mim McCann in September. The new team is Christine Burgess (social media and marketing), Linda Foskett (treasurer) and John Giuseppe and Jo Flatt (committee members): “Mim and I had a great meeting a couple of times to go over all the ins and outs of how it is run. She was so good at it handing over. I have done the trail myself as an artist in 2017 and I did it again last year. And I was going to do it a few years before but Covid intervened. What happened was that I offered to help Mim when she sent out a newsletter saying that she was struggling to get certain things done, and I said that I would volunteer. She took me up on my offer and we were talking about how everything was run and I started to become really fascinated by all the background and how it all works. I told her it would be a really good experience for me to learn and when she decided that she was stepping down I said to her that I would like to be on the committee, but she said to me that she had it in mind for me to be chairman.

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“The trail is a great thing. Artists really enjoy talking to people, and people just really love getting to see the artists. The visitors might be artistic themselves or they might be collectors but they love chatting and seeing the workshops and the studios, and the lovely thing is that it also inspires new artists. I really enjoyed talking to people when I did it and it's great to get different ideas and thoughts and different perspectives.”

Jazmine Saunders (contributed pic)Jazmine Saunders (contributed pic)
Jazmine Saunders (contributed pic)

Jazmine now intends to build on past successes. She has started off by changing the logo: “It was supposed to be a door for open doors but people didn't really understand that it was a door so we have got a new logo which is really is a mix of the old logo and something new.

“I want to stick to the tracks of the art trail but also I want to bring in some fresh ideas. One of the things that I want to do is get sponsorship, to get local businesses to sponsor an artist so that people who might not be able to afford going on the trail can get their fee covered by a sponsor. We have decided on the committee that we are calling it a bursary scheme and we've also got backing from Chichester City Council which is great.” Jazmine also wants to promote the sharing of venues so that no artist need ever be alone at home or in the studio with visitors and feeling vulnerable. If an artist is happy to be alone, then that's absolutely fine but if an artist would rather be paired with someone else then the art trail will look to accommodate that request.

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