Artists take over Brean Down fort

Several National Trust countryside properties are currently in the spotlight as venues for artists to reveal their inspiration and creative processes until Sunday 2 October.

‘Sense of Place: Art on the Edge’

With over 210 venues taking part, Somerset Open Studios is a countywide opportunity to view over 300 artists and makers from a range of disciplines in their working environment. Now the largest visual art and design event in Somerset, this year’s line-up includes established names such as Richard Pomeroy, Angela Charles and Magnus Hammick; as well new and emerging artists.

At Brean Down fort, the second and final phase of the ‘Sense of Place’ art project gets underway. For ‘Sense of Place: Art on the Edge’, the abandoned fort buildings will be transformed into creative studios for two weeks; and visitors will be able to see artwork being created and have the chance to get involved.

The ‘Sense of Place’ project began last year and was a huge success, with hundreds of visitors making their way to the fort, to explore the installations throughout the buildings and witness the vibrant history and stories surrounding Brean Down coming to life through the arts.

Artists Donna Vale and Joy Merron have once again been leading a team of artists and working hard all year with the support of National Trust Rangers, to deliver an art experience which they hope will be even more successful than before.

‘Sense of Place: Art on the Edge’

Furthermore, following the two weeks of open studios there will be an exhibition of the artwork for an additional fortnight (every Thursday to Sunday, between Monday 3 and Sunday 16 October). Exploring a range of different themes, from the voices of Brean Down’s past to caring for the environment and plastic pollution, there will be something to pique everyone’s interest. Visitors will even have the chance to buy pieces of art and souvenirs of the project from the National Trust shop at Brean Down.

‘Sense of Place: Art on the Edge’

Tess Hirst, the National Trust’s Visitor Experience Manager for North Somerset comments: ‘We are so excited to have the artists back at Brean Down for another year. They interpret the fort, which many visitors may not even realise is there, in a completely new and exciting way. It’s so nice to see the whole place brought to life once again and to be given the chance to tell its story.’

In addition, artist Alice Maddicott will be touring several National Trust countryside places with her pop-up ‘Travelling Open Studio’ project. Members of the public are invited to come and create work inspired by the landscape in a new location each day and she will be finishing her tour at Brean Down, on Sunday 2 October, between 11am and 4pm.

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