Open Studios Ayrshire: April 24-27

By Sarah Green

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Open Studios Ayrshire: April 24-27

This year the third Open Studios Ayrshire art trail promises to be the biggest and best so far. Boasting over seventy artists and makers, the weekend of April 24-27 looks like it is going to be impressive. Exhibitions will take place in various venues across Ayrshire, including the likes of Maclaurin Galleries, Dumfries House and Boswell House, the McKechnie Institute and the Carrick Centre alongside artists' own studios.

Venues stretch from Stewarton to Girvan, from Auchinleck to Troon. This year there are also several art clubs and art groups that will be showcasing their material. Following on from last year's successes a varied programme of free workshops will be available to the general public, with new workshops for children being delivered by the staff from the Little Art School of Ayr in Girvan, Troon and Ayr. Also a competition for children and youth groups is being sponsored by Ayr Ice-cream family business Renaldo's.

For those who have not yet come across Open Studios Ayrshire (OSA), it is a non-profit artist led organisation, which aims to promote artists/makers in Ayrshire whilst supporting one other throughout the year. The hard work culminates in multiple exhibitions over a long weekend in April when artists throw open their studio doors to the public. The beautifully produced booklets and information available on the OSA website make it is possible to plan a route over the weekend to create an art trail that takes in an exhilarating landscape of painting, ceramics, glassware, jewellery, mixed media, textiles and photography.

Amongst the artists are the well established alongside the up and coming and the range of styles on offer means that there will be something to suit everyone's tastes. The colours, textures and shapes will not disappoint, as the plethora of talent that has emerged from Ayrshire over the last few years will be very much in evidence over the weekend of 24-27 of April this year.

When an artist throws open his or her studio doors, the general public is privy to a wonderful opportunity and privilege. The story behind a piece of art work is part of the journey to the finished piece, and being able to chat with the creator gives a wonderful insight into the process. Owning a piece of art becomes some much more personal when the artist has explained how the art work came to be.

The creative process for each artist or maker is often very different. Listening to the story behind the creativity places the piece of work in context and often helps to further understanding and appreciation. To add to this, some of the artists and makers will be working in their studios and will provide further insight into their creative process.

Set aside this weekend and it can also become a wonderful way to explore some of the local area, visiting villages and towns in all of the Ayrshires and taking in some of the amazing coastline and scenery along the way.

The Chairperson of OSA, Irene Walker says, "These are exciting times for OSA. Come and join us on the art trail where you will have an interesting, informative experience viewing the best of Ayrshire's art and visit some wonderful studios and venues."

The OSA run Ayrshire Art Trail takes place over the weekend of 24-27 April at various venues throughout Ayrshire.

Brochures promoting all artists, venues and art events will be available early March or visit the website at:

http://www.openstudiosayrshire.com/osa2014/

You can follow OSA on Facebook, by searching for OpenStudiosAyrshire, or on Twitter at OSAyrshire.

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