Pop-up galleries put art into the heart of communities

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Local Art Scene boss Trevor Hart

THE Lymington-based Local Art Scene is expanding its showcase of local talent with pop-up galleries starting next week, aiming to “put art into the heart of the community”.

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While the Local Art Scene’s High Street premises offers exhibiting space, it is limited in size, which last year led owner Trevor Hart to create an outdoor gallery space in Henderson Court, in front of the existing gallery.

Now it is going on the road with Hampshire County Council backing.

Trevor said: “The pop-up galleries are going to be out and about throughout the summer months allowing artists a vital space to exhibit works for sale.

“It’s a really important part of the local art community, and we are so excited to be leading this initiative.”

The first event launches on Wednesday at Setley Ridge Vineyard Garden Centre, Brockenhurst, which Trevor said “is a great chance to get a feel for the buzz around the art community”.

He said: “We are delighted to be expanding our reach into the heart of the community. We have a small gallery space in central Lymington, but it’s not big enough to be able to give everyone the opportunity to show their work.

“Our only option was to take our artists’ work out into the public arena, where there is an abundance of space and a ready-made audience, just waiting to be utilised.”

The pop-up community art gallery has been part-funded by a grant from Hampshire County Council, which has enabled the Local Art Scene to engage with more artists in the community who need exhibition space.

A selection of art to be found at the pop-up galleries

Trevor added: “Art is on the up. Even in this period of economic uncertainty, art is holding its own. The UK prides itself in having a rich culture in the arts and antiques market, generating £8bn a year.

“We as a nation excel at creating affordable art, we lead trends and are respected as world leaders in the field.

“Bring that scenario down to a local level, and you can find in our immediate locale some astonishingly talented artists, offering work that is affordable and current, which can rival work in some of the top London galleries.

“However, it isn’t that easy. The main problem that many artists face is the availability of gallery space in which to exhibit their works for sale. The Local Art Scene has responded to this by created outdoor gallery space in the form of a pop-up gallery.”

The new portable gallery provides over 675 sq ft of undercover exhibiting space for at least 12 artists. Fair weather allows this number to grow to over 24 exhibiting local artists.

This was branded successfully at Henderson Court as Art in the Yard, and proved a vibrant and exciting mix of work, which was well received by those passing through the courtyard.

The expanded reach sees more venue specific pop-up galleries to include Art in the Garden at Stanwell House, Lymington, and Setley Ridge, Brockenhurst; Art in the Yard at Earley Court, Lymington; and Art in the Village at The Green, Milford.

The Local Art Scene is run as a social enterprise, aimed at supporting local artists with their online marketing and creating opportunities to display their work direct to potential customers.

The website is designed to clearly direct the visitor to local artists, art galleries, suppliers, exhibitions and events in towns and cities across the UK.

For more information, go to www.thelocalartscene.com/pop-up-community-art-gallery.