Sidmouth School of Art’s latest billboard artwork Our Town is currently being exhibited at the Sidmouth Wall space public art gallery overlooking the Ham East carpark.
This colourful abstract artwork which captures Sidmouth at a moment in time is already attracting a lot of attention.
This artwork is a celebration of the town’s unique qualities, with its charming buildings from different times in the history of Sidmouth interleaved with an abundance of lawns, trees and gardens both public and private.
Coordinating Artist Maureen Hawkridge led the collaboration of 60 people, the youngest being 5 and the oldest 85, who created a total of 234 individual artworks which were collaged together digitally to create the final piece. Maureen now retired, studied Painting and Sculpture at Leeds College of Art, and Education at Bristol University and taught for many years, runs the Exploring Art group within Sidmouth U3A.
Maureen Hawkridge said
“I’ve really enjoyed working with so many people, both younger and older, who have put their heart and soul into this celebration of our Town, and it’s exciting to have it displayed where it will be seen and admired by residents and visitors alike.”
Grace Essex, Sidmouth District Guides commissioner added
“The Sidmouth Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Rangers with expert tuition found the experience intriguing and enjoyable, an opportunity to work with other members of the Sidmouth community to be creative and have fun.”
Our Town presents Sidmouth’s quirky and decorative architectural styles and the iconic seafront. The artists interpretations of their own homes and careful placement of them, evokes a sense of pride and belonging. The artwork invites the viewer to keep discovering the incredible detail and personal touches. The overall collective montage honours what is special and unique about Sidmouth.
Sidmouth School of Art Artistic Director Coco Hodgkinson said
“It’s great to see this work on the billboard, the process took more than a year to complete and was a labour of love that embodies our Vision to Make Sidmouth the Artwork!”
This latest wallspace is part of a suite of new projects designed and delivered in partnership with Sidmouth School of Art and Sidmouth Coastal Community Hub. Fine Art prints of this artwork will be available to buy in the coming weeks – follow Sidmouth School of Art on Facebook and Instagram @sidmouthschool_art for latest updates.
Sidmouth Wall Space repurposes an unloved wall overlooking a car park in Sidmouth, Devon – it showcases community/public art that residents and visitors enjoy and are inspired by and engaged with and that add sustainable social value in parallel:
- connecting and collaborating with arts and cultural groups/organisations
- focusing on engaging young people and adults to develop confidence in their creativity
- working with people to involve them and their ideas, discovering and nurturing talent
- building a sense of wellbeing through shared identity/belonging and creative place-making
Sidmouth School of Art is about creativity and wellbeing through art and culture. Co-founder David Shrigley, OBE: “Art is about discovering what something means to you and expressing what you think and feel.”
Each billboard has a process behind it, working with artists and young people or local groups to build confidence, create an open access platform for public art and share skills. This is because we value that: Encouraging and engaging with art and our creative selves is a path to wellbeing and happiness.
Sidmouth Wallspace is a physical public outdoor gallery for everyone at the Ham carpark , Sidmouth, where the work of different artists using a variety of mediums are presented. Our project website provides a digital platform where work is also presented in our online galleries www.sidmouthart.org
The project is funded by the Arts Council England with support from Sidmouth Town Council.