As we send off artwork of this Winter issue of Venue to the printer, we are struck – as indeed we always are – by the rich seam of creative talent that thrives here in our region. Our ‘home-grown’ artists, designers, sculptors, illustrators, writers, makers
and performers make this a dynamic place in which to live, work and do business. In this issue alone
we are bringing news from galleries in the region presenting the works of contemporary artists, as well as three-dimensional sculpture, ceramics and glass; we are flagging up a specialist show bringing the best contemporary craft by artists from across Europe who work with clay, glass and metal, using
a furnace to produce their unique items; we are previewing seasonal shows of contemporary craft featuring artists and makers whose innovative work includes ceramics, textiles, printmaking, jewellery, furniture and more; and we are welcoming back on tour the Eastern Angles theatre company with another of their hilarious spoofs, this time featuring the Brontë sisters.
We are also fortunate in having remarkable arts education provision in the region, with many of the institutions becoming popular arts hubs as well. In this issue we feature the University of Hertfordshire’s Art and Design Gallery in Hatfield, part of their UH Galleries venue in Hatfield and St Albans, which
is considered to be one of the most innovative contemporary art spaces in the UK. We also
report Cottenham Village College’s search for Cambridgeshire’s top 20 artists as part of this year’s Rheebridge Open Art Exhibition at the College, which is becoming a major visual arts event for the area. Alongside these ‘big players’ we have reports of some of the local initiatives running classes, competitions or workshops encouraging people
of all ages and abilities to become creative.
Another plus for our region, of course, is how fortunate we are to be so
accessible to the world-class arts venues in the capital, enabling us easily
to see and experience some of the very best creative talent the world has to offer. In our London Beat columns in this issue, as well as the visual arts events we think will reward a visit to the capital
this Winter, we have picked out for your interest exhibitions ranging from Pop Art Design, fashion
and textiles to perhaps more ‘edgy’, sometimes multi-media, events with political themes offering much to think about.
Our main aim at Venue is to provide a fitting showcase for our region’s artists and venues and
in doing that we hope to encourage our readers to support them and enjoy what they have to offer. You will be very aware, as we are, that for every artist or event we feature in Venue, there are hundreds of others that we have not been able to include. We
are always pleased to hear about your own events, or those that you have discovered, that have excited you and given you pleasure. Working together, we can ensure that our practitioners continue to thrive, and to make a vital contribution to the quality of life, and the wellbeing and economic health of our community here.
Fran Goss Editor