Shoreham's hidden art gem

TUCKED away among the many eateries in Shoreham's East Street is a little art gem.

Artists and Frames is not just another framing shop, but also an artist's gallery, with every picture hanging on the wall the work of the owner, Malcolm Hardy, pictured left.

The self-taught artist started painting seriously at the age of 20 and set up the shop 23 years ago when he was made redundant from a printing firm.

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Mr Hardy said: "In those days, shops didn't become vacant that often in Shore-ham and were sought after.

"I was lucky to secure this shop and have been here ever since."

Mr Hardy, who also does framing, has recently opened up the workshop area towards the back of the shop, as a gallery to encourage customers to walk round and browse.

He works in watercolours and oils and paints portraits, landscapes and other objects, as well as undertaking commissions.

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His customers come from far and wide, including India and America.

The faces of Marilyn Monroe, John Lennon, Mick Jagger and Michael Caine stare out from the main canvases hanging on the walls or stacked in rows on the floor.

Mr Hardy said: "My business is about 50/50 framing and paintings, but it is not your regular fish-and-chip Friday night trade '“ it ebbs and flows."