Wednesday, 8 May 2013

Art for arts sake

May's a good month to visit Brighton.

It's funny how the internet age has changed the amount of things we know about.  I grew up in a small village on the Herts/Essex borders called Hatfield Heath.  It was everything that a village should be.  A large green on which cricket was played every year and the site of the annual summer fete.  There was a butcher, a baker, a haberdashery, a general store, a garage, a news agent and plenty of pubs.  I don't think any of them exist any more, although I suspect cricket is still played on the green.  I remember once my practically hysterical mother screaming blue murder at me as I sauntered across, not realising that a few hours earlier adders had been found in the grass.

What I didn't know, but I suspect I would now if I was growing up there was that just down the road lived and worked Britain's greatest sculptor, Henry Moore.  It seems extraordinary to me that within spitting distance was someone with such talent and fame and we didn't even know.  These days, his home, studios and grounds are open to the public.  We went the weekend before last with a couple of friends.  He used to deliver the newspapers every morning.  As well as many of Moore's works, there is currently a Rodin exhibition as well, so well worth the trip down the country lanes.

I particularly liked this's in a field of sheep, and the reason it changes colour is because the sheep rub up against it...I guess it's worth a fortune, and the sheep have no idea at all!

But back to Brighton.

May is festival month in Brighton, so whatever your taste in arts, there's something to see or do.  It's odd then that in all the years I've lived there I've not managed to see more than a handful of things.  But the last couple of years we've discovered the Artists Open Houses event...essentially it's an opportunity to see all the creative stuff that comes out of Brighton, as well as having a nose round people's houses...who could resist.

We really like Frances Bloomfield who creates these

And Sophie Woodrow who creates these

Just down the road from us, Studio 323 is doing a project of photographing everyone who comes in.  We had our portrait taken, so I expect it will pop up here some time.  See if you can spot us!